It has been a year since I last visited a bike trail. I miss the adrenaline rush, the aching legs and the heat of the sun onto my skin. Dax and I already agreed to hit the trail again every Saturday mornings. But with the haze lingering for more than a month now, we cannot even cycle to Punggol Park. For now, I can only do a throwback of our last ride.
Singapore is a flat terrain. When I transferred here I already prepared myself that there will be no La Mesa Watershed, No Nuvali nor Heroes trail here. But, good thing Google helped me discover some trails within the Central Catchment Nature Reserve.
We started our ride at Yishun then pass by Mandai Avenue. The ride is slightly inclined. What I love about passing by this road is it feels like you are not in a city. You can see a lot of trees, less cars and monkeys sometimes. We passed by the Upper Seletar Reservoir which is a good sight to take in. If only we had time back then, we could have sit there and just talk non stop to each other. By the way, we started our ride around 2pm. We first pass by Singapore Zoo then back to the start of the Park Connector onto the trail. The Central Park Connector is located inside a nature reserve that links the Mandai Park and Gangsa Trail.
We started at Track 15. This is highly recommended for bikers who are not skilled or confident enough to enjoy the Bukit Timah Trail experience like me. It can be muddy and slippery after a downpour. It was an easy ride, then along the trail comes something definitely not for beginners – the Gangsa Track! It was over before I had the time to react or even backed out. Good thing I survived it! Then lastly, we entered the Butterfly, a 3.3km-long trail that offers Singapore’s definitive experience in roots riding. It is a real jungle riding with a lot of roots, slippery sections and a couple of jumps.This is where I had an accident. I was riding quite fast and when I saw the turn ahead I already pressed the break but apparently the breaks didn’t do the trick. Next thing I know, I was swimming on dirt, blood dripping from my arm. I was okay after a week after that.
Sadly, this trail is now closed for upgrading works by the Natural Parks Board. Good thing, we were able to ride it even once.
Over all, its a 7 out of 10 in terms of difficulty. There was a variety of turns and terrain. Its a 8 out of 10 for accessibility since its just relatively near Yishun. We also encountered some riders along the way. But because of the timing its actually not safe if ever you will encounter an accident alone. Beauty wise its a 10 for me because its the first time i went on a “real” trail with my husband 😘. We did not explore until the Bukit Timah trail because its getting darker.
It was a good ride and I thank Singapore government for preserving areas like this. Next on the list is the Old Railway.