June 13, 2016

Kampong Trail to Venus Drive

Pipeline Trail

This was an interesting walk because we intended to look for a trail to one of the supporting towers below the TreeTop bridge probably used for maintenance access. 

Kampong Trail

We met at the Bukit Timah Food Centre. Then we proceeded to Hindhede Road for the start of the  Kampong Trail. After crossing Rifle Range Road the trail leads to the Durian Loop a former durian plantation. During the durian season we could see many durian lovers waiting to pick the ripe fruits that dropped from the trees. The early birds would have scoured all the regular trails and just picked up those that dropped during the early morning. The trail loops back to Rifle Range Road and on to ST Kinetics. Just to the right after crossing the barrier is where the pipeline trail starts. 

A shelter on the Petaling Trail

Pipeline Trail 

The trail is undulating. It follows the boundary of ST Kinetics compound until the spillway. When we reached the spillway we turned left and walked along it toward Peirce Reservoir.  The spillway is used to discharge water from Peirce Reservoir to MacRitchie Reservoir. 

After a brief stop at the beach to admire the scenery, we returned to the lower end of the spillway. Here there is a bridge where we crossed over to continue along the pipeline trail.

At the flow control station we separated into two groups one going to the Ranger Station first to await the second group. The other group continued straight on the trail behind the control station to the bottom of the TreeTop bridge. 

The beginning of the pipeline trail

TreeTop Walk 

Here we searched for signs of a trail to the tower. The first trail turned out to be impassable. We backtracked a little bit and did find a trail. We trekked along this and very soon arrived at the tower. We moved a bit further on and climbed onto the beginning of the boardwalk. This was the beginning of a long flight of steps to the top of the hill.

We stopped for a while at the first hut after the bridge. This is at the top of the long staircase. After this we moved along the rest of the boardwalk also called the Petaling Trail. When we reached the Sime Trail we turned left towards the Ranger Station. 

The endless staircase

Ranger Station 

As usual we  rested here. The Ranger Station has toilet facilities and two water coolers for us to replenish our water bottles. Here we usually met other hikers and exchanged greetings and information. 

We left the Ranger Station as it started to rain. It became a heavy downpour accompanied by lightning. At the SICC clubhouse we took shelter at a storage area. When the rain weakened we quickly continued our walk to Upper Thomson Road. The two groups met up along Venus Drive and finished the remaining walk to the Venus Drive car park.

Our Route

Map data ©2016 Google, Urban Redevelopment Authority

February 25, 2016

Sungei Serangoon Park Connector

Otters enjoying a meal at Serangoon River

Punggol-Sengkang

This is a lucky area bound by the Punggol River on the west, the Serangoon River on the east and the Johor Straits to the north. This results in about 25km of waterways along which walking and cycling tracks were built. Coney Island was just opened in October 2015 adding 2.4km on the main trail.

In addition to three MRT stations at Punggol, Sengkang and Buangkok on the North-East Line, the area has two LRT lines one serving Punggol and the other Sengkang.


Serangoon River

Serangoon Park Connector

We started with a meetup at the Hougang St 21 Food Centre for an early lunch. This place has two popular fish ball noodles stalls both equally crowded with a queue even at 11am. The chicken rice, bak chor mee, laksa, wanton mee, hainanese curry rice, rojak are also popular. It is situated beside the Heartland Mall at the Kovan MRT Station.

After lunch we walked along Tampines Road until we reached the Serangoon River next to Hougang Ave 7. It forms part of the reservoir created by the East and West Dams at both ends of Coney Island.


F&B outlets at Tebing Lane

We walked along the river bank on the Sungei Serangoon Park Connector. Initially the banks were protected with concrete but further along the trail just before Buangkok Drive, the banks were covered with vegetation giving a more rustic look. Across the river was the former Lorong Halus Dumping Ground for our refuse. It used to propagate a stink as we drive past the area along Tampines Road. The land was left to regenerate for decades and now will be developed for high-tech industries. The banks across the river was forested. We had walked the trail on the opposite bank years ago. Last time we walked the trail it was muddy and we were concerned that the water was contaminated with leachate from the landfill. We need to choose a day when the trail is dry before going that way again.

At Buangkok Drive which runs parallel to Sungei Pinang, the park connector turns to the left and 400m away is Punggol Park.

Sungei Serangoon Park Connector

Instead of continuing along the Serangoon Park Connector, we crossed under the Buankok East Drive on to another park connector called Sungei Serangoon Park Connector. This is a pleasant track with Sengkang flats on the left and the Serangoon River on the right. The park connector continued below the Tampines Expressway into Punggol. Here the park connector is named Punggol Promenade all the way to Punggol Point. 

Just before the Pedestrian Bridge at Lorong Halus at Tebing Lane we passed F&B outlets consisting of restaurants and fastfood. Uncle Leong Seafood is located here. Just before the pedestrian bridge to the Lorong Halus Wetland Reserve we spotted a family of otters frolicking in the reservoir. One of them was munching on a sizeable fish. We rested at the Lorong Halus Wetland Reserve where there are toilet facilities and a water cooler for us to replenish our water supply.

Punggol Waterway

Punggol Waterway

After the Pedestrian Bridge, we reached the Punggol Waterway. Here we turned west and walked along the waterway. Both sides are being developed with thousands of flats being built so the skyline has changed drastically since the waterway was opened just a few years back. Several specially designed pedestrian bridges cross the waterway providing excitement and photo opportunities. We passed the Sunset Bridge at the entrance to the waterway. Just before Punggol Road is the Wave Bridge. After walking below the Punggol Road, we came to the Kelong Bridge near where we exit the waterway and walked along Punggol Road. We ended our walk at Punggol MRT Station.


Related Posts
Punggol Park Connector - from Buangkok to Punggol
Punggol Point
Punggol Waterway Punggol Promenade 


Route Map

Map data ©2016 Google