Sheer exhilaration and jubilation was what 60 participants of Ford Ranger Owner’s Club (FROC) Borneo Region felt when they completed the first 4×4 expedition by land to a place called Ulu Engkuah, located in the District of Song, Kapit, Sarawak.
Organised by Ford Ranger Owner’s Club (FROC) Borneo Region and supported by Sime Darby Auto Connexion, the sole distributor for Ford in Malaysia, this three days two nights expedition will mark a spot in the history books of FROC Borneo Region as having driven through 120 kilometres in 8 hours through the gravel route of Ngungun-Song Estate on wet and slippery surface, passing through river crossings and unexpected hilly terrains in 16 Ford Ranger pickup trucks.
“This was indeed one of the best and most successful 4×4 offroad expedition FROC Borneo Region has organised,” exclaimed an excited Martinson Banyang, organising chairperson of FROC Borneo Region.
“The team not only experienced the tough drive route and the terrains but they also shared in the culture and food of the local native villagers, as well as a greater awareness of nature conservation,” he said.
Ulu Engkuah is a remote and uncharted village located in the district of Song, under the division of Kapit, Sarawak. It is surrounded by preserved lush virgin rainforests of Borneo, pristine rivers, and fresh air. Located 120km from the main town of Kanowit, Sarawak, the only way to reach Ulu Engkuah is only via the Rajang river, the main river of Sarawak. Charting a route via land by the FROC Borneo Region team was tedious but the team received help from the local orang asli from the village. The exploration of this route also opens up development possibilities for the people of Ulu Engkuah.
02“We could not have reached our destination without a reliable vehicle like the Ford Ranger that really impressed us with its smart features and tough capabilities to conquer unexpected obstacles, rivers, bumpy roads and hilly terrains,” said Martinson. “It also introduced some of the new members of the team as well as the communities living there, to an alternative route to reach Ulu Engkuah.”
With the Ranger’s capability to carry a tonne of payload (or 1000kg), participating members did not have to think twice to load up their Rangers to the brim with equipments, food and water, camping materials, and personal items for the journey. It endured slippery uphill and downhill slopes with an inclination of 45 degrees that got its Hill Launch Assist feature swinging into action at the right time. Crossing through deep and shallow waters was also an easy task for the Ranger with its water-wading capability.
FROC Borneo Region is already planning ahead for a more mentally and physically challenging, thrilling and extreme off road trip to test their Rangers and the drivers to the maximum with a long distance off roading of 12-18 hours, deep into the jungle.