A Tale of Mount Kinabalu - Crocker Range

If I just say Mount Kinabalu is the tallest peak in Crocker Ranger in the Borneo Island, it sounds like a mundane primary school Geography lesson. To make it interesting, let me tell the local story that we heard from Hatta, our cabbie (similar version is available in Wikipedia as well).

After few KMs down the road from Kota Kinabalu, Hatta pointed at the distant mist covered Mount Kinabalu and I wanted to take a picture, so he pulled over. From then, he started telling about the legendary folklore vividly:)

Kinabalu sneaking out of mist

Eons ago A Chinese Prince was marooned in this part of the Borneo. He fell in love with a local Kadazan tribal girl and married her.

View from Bundhu Tuhan - a kampung (Village in Malay)on the way to Kinabalu

They lived happily and had children!

The Prince started missing his parents, and wanted to visit them. He told his wife that he would go home, meet and get permission from his dad (the Chinese Emperor), and take his wife and the children to China.

Pic taken from the moving cab - using sports mode

Though the girl was apprehensive at first, she believed in the prince's promise that he would come back for her and bid him farewell.

From the moving cab - Village where the Kadazan girl lived!?

Entrance to National Park - UNESCO site

The Kadazan girl was eagerly waiting for the prince. However, the sea shore was far from her village. So, she climbed the tallest mountain near her village to gaze at the South China Sea, hoping to see the prince' ship.

Guest houses for the climbers

As months passed to years, there was no sign of the prince.

Timpohon Point view - Kinabalu

Forced by the Emperor, the prince married another princess for the benefit of the kingdom, and kept away from the Kadazan girl with a heavy heart. Sounds like a typical bollywood movie plot, or any mythological, mystical, historical story, right?

Timpohon Point view - valley

Well, the poor girl was not aware of the prince' betrayal, so she went up the mountain everyday at dawn and came back to the village only at night, to tend to their children.

Entrance to the trekking path leading to Mount Kinabalu

Only climbers with permit are allowed and guide are allowed

We heard only seasoned climbers could make it!

As you go higher, the weather is cold. Imagine how the Kadazan girl would have suffered the harsh weather! By, now the villagers had started calling her the widow of the Chinese prince, as they assumed that the prince might have died on the sea!

Mount Kinabalu - from the viewing deck above the trekking entrance

Finally, the dedicated wife died on the hill top, still longing for the prince. The villagers started believing that her ghost was up in the mountain, waiting for the prince' return and they honored her by naming the mount as Kinabalu meaning Chinese Widow in Kadazan language!

We were touched by the story:)
You might also like to read/see pics of my other Borneo experiences...

Poring - Canopy Walkway Bridge
Aerial Views - Borneo
Water ways of Brunei - Air Kampung, Venice of the East
The Giant Flower - Rafflesia
Jesselton - Kota Kinabalu


Lesley said...

What a sad, but romantic story.
That sign looks a bit menacing, but if it is a protected area, I guess menacing helps!

Thanks for joining in to signs, signs. I have fixed your link .

Martha Z said...

A lovely spot and an interesting but not uncommon myth to go with it.

Pretty Life Online said...

nice post for skywatch... Have a great weekend ahead!!! Hoping you can visit @ my little corner.

chubskulit said...

Gorgeous sky!

My Sky Watch, have a happy weekend!

Dhemz said...

beautiful views...thanks for sharing the tale...good to know!

Al said...

Great shots and a fascinating story. I'd love to climb that - I bet the views would be incredible!

forgetmenot said...

Lovely story and truly beautiful pictures. What a view!!! Thanks for sharing such beautiful photos. Mickie :)

Marlene said...

Interesting tale. My husband has been to Kinabalu and he's always thinking of going back there with me. Lovely photos, too.

Evelyn said...

How sad - reminds me of Madame Butterfly. Love your pics - I climbed it about 20 years ago. One of my best trips. Very memorable.

Hey Harriet said...

A very beautiful series of photos! I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend :)

HOOTIN' ANNI said...

Beautiful photos and very interesting story.

My Sunday Link: Shadow of Old Glory

Hope your weekend is treating you well!!

James said...

What a beautiful place!

Leckeres für Mensch und Katze said...

Great pictures! :) LG Tina

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