Monthly Archives: December 2017

//December

Get Fit Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb

Considering whether to climb Mount Kinabalu whilst traveling Sabah, Borneo?

Wondering how challenging is the Mount Kinabalu Climb and how fit you need to be. You do not need to be super fit to climb Mount Kinabalu but you do need to be in good physical condition.

Get Fit Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb

Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb

Climbing Mt. Kinabalu is a tough physical challenge but not a technical climb as such. The average climber ascends from the starting point of Timpohon Gate within Kinabalu Park to Panalaban (aka Laban Rata), located a.s.l 3,333m in approximatley 4 – 6 hours. Our good friend Ravi Tharumalingam two time Mt Everest submitter recommends taking your time and aiming for a minimum 6 hour ascent time to reduce the effects of altitude sickness which can effect some people at this elevation.

Unrelenting large, seemingly endless rock steps form the well trodden path. The route is 99% uphill and the secret to a successfully climb is to take it slowly, unless you’re competing in the annual Kinabalu Climbathon, climbing Mt. Kinabalu is not a competition.

Rest huts are located along the route at 1KM intervals, equipped with squat toilets and untreated water they provide a seating area and an opportunity to discuss with other climbers the climbing experience.

The benefits of packing light for your Mt. Kinabalu climb becomes evident soon after you start your climb when everything starts to feel 10kg heavier than when you packed. Refer to our Preparation & FAQ page for a suggested packing list. Porters are available and can be requested upon booking, extra fees apply.

Clouds will begin to close in and more often than not it will begin raining around 12 noon and usually disperse around 5pm just in time for sunset.

Get Fit Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb

Once you arrive at the Panalaban plateau you will find your basic accommodation. There are three huts to accommodate climbers, Laban Rata Resthouse, Pendant Hut and Lamaing Hut. All provide dormitory accommodation. Laban Rata & Pendant Hut also have private rooms available. If the weather has heated the water its slightly warmer than freezing cold, but don’t expect any luxuries at the overnight rest stop.

Temperatures at Laban Rata are 6 – 10°C at night, plummeting further to 2°C at the summit with wind chill sometimes subtracting yet another few degrees from that.

The summit ascent starts at 2.30am and this is when a good torchlight is required. The final ascent from Laban Rata passing through the final check point in the dark is gruelling, steep slopes and some ropes to assist pave the route. If it’s a clear night, do take a moment to enjoy the night sky, with no light pollution its breathtaking.

Most people take around 2-3 hours to reach Mount Kinabalu’s summit from the Panalaban plateau, the objective is to arrive just before sunrise. If your ascent the day prior was quick then your guide may suggest you begin later than 2:30 am to avoid a long wait at the summit. The views at the top are spectacular. It can be extremely cold up there, especially since you may be sweating from the physical excursion then waiting in surrounding temperatures of 2°C for the sun to rise so make sure you take dry warm clothes. Due to the mountains close proximity to the equator Mt Kinabalu is not snow capped, so the mountains granite surface is visible year round. Take  a moment to appreciate the mountains beauty, you might even see hardcore paragliders going for an alternative descent.

Get Fit Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb

Once sunrise is over and you have absorbed enough of the views then its time to begin the descent. If you are climbing with the optional Via Ferrata activities then you will descend via a different route which will involve ropes & bridges, if you are descending via the standard route, you will follow the same route as the ascent. Irrespective your decent from Panalaban follows the same route as the ascent.

The descent, including breakfast at Laban Rata, will take 5 – 9 hours depending on your pace. People often report the descent being more challenging than the ascent due to the unrelenting use of your knee joints and pressure on your shins & surrounding muscles. Our advice is to take your time and enjoy the entire experience.

Once you reach Timpohon Gate (the starting & ending point) our guide will show you where to find the park shuttle bus which will bring you 5.5km down the windy roads back to the Balsam Cafe where you will meet our team to bring you back to Kota Kinabalu, unless you wish to remain another night at Kinabalu Park or Poring Hot Springs in the various lodges available.

How should i prepare to climb Mt Kinabalu

• A good amount of outdoor cardiovascular exercise (power walking, cycling, running, mountain biking etc) and getting out for long days in the hills whenever possible is great preparation for your climb.
• We recommend all climbers take cardiovascular sports at least twice a week, with each session being a minimum of 2 hours in duration at a medium intensity.
• Fitness training should begin 2-3 months leading up to your trip, this way you should be well prepared.

We have a number of Mount Kinabalu climbing packages available to suit your budget and requirement. Contact Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures for more information.

Get Fit Mount Kinabalu Summit Climb2018-07-13T22:11:17+08:00

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter

Hi everyone! In this post, get to know Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures and read about our activities in the November 2017 Monthly Newsletter. We have gathered a selection of special happenings for your reading pleasure as well as to showcase the beauty of Sabah and give you an insight on us as a company. This month, it had been very eventful and lively with the November 2017 PADI Instructor Development Course, a birthday surprise surprise for our Downbelow Director Joanne Swann, the Downbelow X Rip Curl Marine Conservation Program 2017, the new Go Pro Hero 6 Black Camera arrives at Downbelow Dive Shop, our Downbelow Team removed a ghost net from the waters of TARP and many more exciting news!

To download the newsletter, click here. For further info, you can contact us at +6012 866 1935 or email us at info@DownbelowAdventures.com.

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter (Page 1)

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter (Page 2)

November 2017 Monthly Newsletter2018-02-03T00:57:59+08:00

Success PADI Instructor Development Course

Congratulations to our November / December candidates for successfully completing our PADI Instructor Development Course and becoming PADI Open Water Scuba Instructors. You are now at a super exciting point of your scuba diving career where you have a world of opportunities to choose from. Where in the world do you want to work? Previous candidates of Downbelow are located all over the globe. Check out the PADI employment board to see what jobs are on offer and begin living your dream!

Success PADI Instructor Development Course

Not Yet A PADI Instructor?

Join us for our next PADI IDC. Attitude & teamwork are the keys to success during your PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC). The IDC is great fun as well as a rewarding and unforgettable experience where you meet people that will likely become lifelong friends.

Resident Platinum PADI Course Director Richard & Pablo PADI Course Director together with our Downbelow Go PRO team will help you develop a clear understanding of the PADI philosophy of continuing education and the full range of PADI programs. We will show you how to take advantage of the teaching materials and tools, including digital products that are available to you as a PADI Instructor.

Teaching is an easy and exhilarating experience once you’ve understood the basic teaching methods and how to fully use the PADI system. The programs are performance based; feedback and encouragement for your improvement is guaranteed throughout the course to inform you of your progress and level of proficiency.

Our modern classroom facilities located at our head office are used for the PADI Instructor Development Course presentations by PADI Course Directors Richard & Pablo and their Go PRO team as well as the IDC candidates. Knowledge development presentation on topics such as dive theory, builds on the candidates knowledge base and is essential to teaching students.

Theory workshops will take place in the classroom, however we encourage candidates to study independently on their own time too. There are valuable benefits to staying in our adventure lodge during the IDC so you can spend evenings in study groups and practicing presentations in our purpose built facilities. This also develops a great team spirit and bond.

Success PADI Instructor Development Course

Our PADI Instructor Development Course – IDC Package Includes Three Instructor Courses

• PADI Assistant Instructor Course (AI)
• PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor (OWSI)
• Emergency First Response Instructor Course (EFRI).

If you already have any of these qualifications, we can tailor your training accordingly.

Once all three courses are successfully completed, you will be prepared for the PADI Instructor Examination (IE), which is a 2 day standardized, objective evaluation conducted by PADI Instructor Examiners from PADI Asia Pacific. We conduct the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) 5 times every year directly before the PADI IE.

This way our candidates knowledge and skills are fresh and fully prepared for the PADI IE evaluation. To find out more about Downbelow’s next IDC in Asia, check out our PADI Instructor Development Courses IDC schedule page. Visit our FAQ page for lots of answers to your questions.

What can I do after I become a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor?

You can enroll in our PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer preparation course where you will be taught five additional PADI Specialty Instructor Courses and gain valuable teaching experience.

Not yet a PADI Divemaster? It’s no problem. You can join us at any diver level and we will design a program for you that incorporates all required prerequisite courses before the IDC.

Contact us at Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures to learn more about our internship options.

Success PADI Instructor Development Course2018-02-03T00:58:00+08:00

Awarded PADI Career Development Centre

Everyone at Downbelow Marine & Wildlife Adventures S/B is feeling very proud right now on receiving the news that PADI have awarded us the prestigious distinction of PADI Career Development Centre, moving us into the highest level of educational professionalism in our industry.

Awarded PADI Career Development Centre

We are also very touched by all the amazing comments on facebook from so many clients & friends. Downbelow began life as a small two person UK dive centre almost two decades ago. Since then we have developed into a respected company with more than forty employees. With exemplary work & environmental ethics, Downbelow has become a way of life. Our team play a huge role in what makes Downbelow very special, our joint commitment to learn, to educate and to share great experiences is what keeps us motivated, dynamic and full of energy. We provide careers and opportunity for all that work within the company and everyone that chooses to educate themselves through us and its fantastic to gain such prestigious recognition for our efforts.

How to Become a PADI Scuba Instructor 

Our two resident PADI Course Directors & GoPro Team not only prepare people to be successful in becoming future PADI instructors, we are providing employees for our growing industry and creating ambassadors for our sport, oceans, outdoor and diving lifestyle.

Our next PADI Instructor Development Course begins 29th January 2018. Come and join us in the knowledge that you have chosen a PADI Career Development Centre to start your career in scuba diving. We remain 100% commited to creating life changing opportunities for professionals in the dive industry.

Awarded PADI Career Development Centre2018-02-03T00:58:00+08:00