Miri and Mulu National Park

Michael Hughes and Ger White
Fri 20 Jul 2012 02:35
We've been in Miri for about a week now---good sheltered marina--apparently with a resident crocadile, though we haven't seen it--but I won't be diving to scrub the bottom! Town is a long walk or a short taxi--shopping malls, bars, restaurants and lots of little Chinese shops selling pretty much everything.
On Monday, we took a short half hour flight to the Mulu National Park--to a landing strip in the middle of rainforest--and stayed there for 3 days. Lots of walking on paths hacked out of the jungle--sore legs when we got back!! The main attraction is a series of caves in the limestone cliffs--each one quite different. Dripping stalacmites/tites, the caves go on for enormous distances. And one, Deer Cave, is the largest cave in the world---or so we were told and I can believe it---hundreds of metres high and wide, and half a mile long in the main winding cave. Another had a significant river flowing through it!
And in the early evening, millions of bats that live in Deer Cave come flying out for their nightime foraging---great sight watching these clouds of bats flying out in formations designed to confuse the awaiting eagles.
But we're now back on board, provisioning and planning the next trip--around 110 miles up to the island of Labuan--which we're doing as part of a race--the BIYC--Borneo International Yacht Challenge. We have a race in the bay off Miri on Sunday, and then on Monday the passage race to Labuan. And we're very confident of not coming first (or second, third........). Other boats are currently hanking on their racing sails and have half a dozen big guys on board. The BIYC finishes next week with racing at Kota Kinabalu--so we'll only be in Labuan long enough to restock the beer and wine---it's a duty free island!!
Onwards and upwards.