Brunei Darussalam

Hiking the Bukit Shahbandar “14 Hills” Extended Trail

17/4/2015: I’ve included a complete trail map of Bukit Shahbandar at the end of this post. If you’ve stumbled across this page looking for a map to hike the hills, feel free to scroll right down.

We’ve lost count the number of times we had hiked up to this Pondok 4 guide pole, started at it for a moment and succumbed to defeat by mere threat of the distance, time and effort it would take for us to complete. Yet on the morning of October 27th the morning when we were only going to hike the usual 9 Hills trail we started at this pole again, the three of us briefly looked at each other — we’ve done this many times except on this day, none of us was going to back down. So here I am, on the eve of my second 14 Hills hike tomorrow, writing about my epic first attempt. Tomorrow’s hike is going to be our largest group hike yet — a total of 13 members.


More pictures from our first 14 Hills hike on Facebook

It took the three of us 4 hours to complete 7.39 kms burning 2000 calories along the way. It would have taken a slightly shorter time had Eric and I not stopped between Pondok 8 and 9 for a 15 minutes photography lesson using his Samsung Galaxy S4.
My morning fuel before the 14 hills hike — two eggs, 4 broccoli flowerets, smoked beef, smoked salmon and MrBaker’s delicious Muesli 80% wholemeal bread along with all the healthy grains. Not pictured is my usual shot of CBTL espresso
The trail between Pondok 4 and 5 poles normally takes no more than 5 minutes. The extended loop between them is a whole different story — distance itself measures longer than the usual 9 Hills.
Eric snapped this photo of my wife and I as we reached the first of a series of poles on the extended loop. 370M to head back to Pondok 4 and be on the way out or soldier on.
Once on the extended loop, a view from across the green landscape is the red soil vista from where we had taken numerous group photos, giving us a sense of scale and distance somewhat.


There are three wooden crossings like this on the extended loop unlike the bridges you’re accustomed to seeing on the 4 and 9 hills trail.
Eric had asked me many times since we first met more than a year, maybe 2, earlier to give him lessons to improve his photography. No better opportunity and timing to learn and have some fun right at Shahbandar. More on Facebook.
My lunch at MOD in Jerudong after 4 hours of intense hiking had left me with a significant increase in appetite — Thai cuisine (chicken basil rice and broccoli mixed vegetables).
Updated 13/04/15 — Bukit Shahbandar trail map covering extended trails that connect the entire forest. Click on map for more information.

9 thoughts on “Hiking the Bukit Shahbandar “14 Hills” Extended Trail

  1. Forwarded from Google+ Comment

    IngSiang Tan | 06/11/2013 11:09 AM
    I went into this route accidentally (via hill 5) a couple years ago (before the route were properly hashed/marked out, and there were no distance markings at all) during my routine 9 hills hike. I had a friend who wasn’t a regular hiker and we only allowed enough time a 9 hills hike.

    Ended up coming out @ 8-9pm (and went on newspaper because we/our family called bomba). Damn.

    We were only 1 hill away from pondok 4 (since we went the reverse direction, i.e. hill 5 to hill 4. If only we push on a little bit more (to hill 4), then I would probably be confident enough to push through all the way in absolute darkness. (after 730pm).


    1. You’re now the second person I know who got lost and made news. In one of our earlier 9 hills hikes we crossed path with two visitors who lost their way for 4 hours and one of them was dehydrated he had difficulty continuing. We spare him our water and guided them out of the forest — they were already so near Pondok 9 when we met them. If you ever want to head back for another 14 hills attempt let me know.


  2. Tried Shahbandar twice, long, long time ago, but didn’t manage to go the whole distance for fear of getting lost and ending up in BB. By the way, Jan do you know of anybody here in BSB who cleans lenses? As much as possible, I’d like to have it done locally than going the Interhouse route to KL or wherever. I’ve got a Canon 85mm f/1.8 that seemed to have inhaled small dust particles and has some sort of, what i think, fungus in it. Seldom used & usually stayed in my camera bag. I’m at the point of opening it up myself but for now has witheld myself from doing so. For the (useless) record, i’ve repaired 2 kit lenses already but i’m quite hesitant in opening up this 85 for obvious reasons. Any recommendation would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.


    1. Hi Sam,

      No, I don’t happen to know anyone who cleans lenses here. It isn’t something I would attempt myself even though I have successfully cleaned all the camera sensors. They’re not the same thing. The last time I took apart the tension ring on my EF 100-400mm hundreds of tiny ball bearings fell out and I had no choice but to return the entire lens to Interhouse to have it professionally replaced by Canon Service Centre Singapore. The tension ring has worked itself loose over the years and needed replacing anyway. Keeping lenses inside your camera bag is the quickest way to encourage fungus growth and removing it can be rather costly. You really should invest in a dry cabinet and store your equipment in an environment that prohibits fungus growth.


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