Mt. Kinabalu vs Mt. Fuji Solo Hike Experience Comparison

highest peak of Southeast Asia and highest peak of Japan

The reason why I hiked Mt. Kinabalu (2013) is because I want to go higher on my amateur mountaineering achievement. That time, the highest mountain I summited was  Mt. Pulag, 3rd highest in Philippines at 2,922masl for two times (2010 and 2011). Then, at a sudden plan due to appropriate month to hike, I planned to summit Mt. Fuji (2014) which was my first time to hike alone on my entire life and my first time also on night hike.  

Mt. Kinabalu from Malaysia and Mt. Fuji from Japan are two of the most popular mountains and tourist-hiker friendly peaks in Asia. As an amateur hiker, this two mountains are the top-most priority on the bucket list. As such, I visited them both and the following was the observation I had during the course.

MT. KINABALU (4,095masl) is the highest mountain in Southeast Asia. Trekking Mt. Kinabalu is expensive trek because it can only be trekked with a recognized local travel agency supported by a mandatory guide and optional porter. The summit push is mildly difficult because of the rope-support ascent early morning and has to descend at around 0600H because of fixed itinerary. On the other hand, MT. FUJI (3,776masl) is the highest mountain in Japan. Trekking Mt. Fuji is not that expensive because it can be done independently (no guide and porter support) and no registration or park fees, only confirmed accommodation is required.


Mt. Kinabalu solo hike (May 2013)

Mt. Kinabalu solo hike (May 2013)

Mt. Kinabalu solo hike (May 2013)

Mt. Kinabalu solo hike (May 2013)

Mt. Kinabalu solo hike (May 2013)

MT. KINABALU MOUNTAIN NAME MT. FUJI
4,095masl (LowPeak) SUMMIT ELEVATION 3,776masl
Sabah, Malaysia LOCATION Yamanashi / Shizuoka, Japan
Highest peak in Southeast Asia FEATURE Highest peak in Japan
Highest peak in Malaysia one of Japan's 3 holy mountains
February to May BEST MONTHS TO HIKE July to September
October to January WORST MONTHS TO HIKE October to February
2 days TREKKING DURATION 2 days
Timpohon (long but easy) TRAILS Yoshida (popular and easy)
Mesilau (short but hard) Subashiri (meet Yoshida on 8th stn)
Gotemba (long at 5th stn)
Fujinomiya (closest 5th stn to summit)
rainforest, rocky TRAIL TYPE rainforest, rocky, alpine
continuously ascent then descent continuously ascent then descent
sheltered little space TRAIL STOP-OVERS little shelter, little space to stay
can purchase refreshments can purchase refreshments
km marker for every 500m TRAIL MARKERS very well-signed post
guide required HIKE JOURNEY can be done independently
$220 ESTIMATED MINIMUM BUDGET $120
advance booking required for entire trek (guide/accommodation included) PREPARATION advance booking required only for accommodation
included in advance booking REGISTRATION free of charge
MAY 25 TO 26, 2013 DATE I VISITED AUGUST 09 TO 10, 2014
with guide only, no porter HIKE JOURNEY solo (no guide/porter)
Timpohon CHOSEN TRAIL Yoshida
fixed CHOSEN TRAIL REMARKS self-customized
2 days TREK DURATION 2 days
Easy to Moderate TREK DIFFICULTY Easy to Moderate
17km TREK RETURN DISTANCE 13km
Laban Rata Dormitory (3,273masl) ACCOMMODATION Seikanso Lodge (2,390masl)
in the rainforest trail only RAINING entire trek (strong typhoon)
Kota Kinabalu TRIP START Nagoya
Kota Kinabalu TRIP END Tokyo
Day One
ITINERARY
Day One
0830H Kinabalu Park (registration) 1325H Fuji 5th Station ( registration)
0900H ETD Kinabalu Park 1400H ETD Fuji 5th Station
1250H lunch 1435H Seikanso Lodge (6th Station)
1600H ETA Laban Rata dormitory 1600H dinner & sleep
2000H sleep 2300H ETD Seikanso Lodge
Day Two Day Two
0130H wake-up 0020H ETA 7th Station
0230H ETD Laban Rata Dormitory 0230H ETA 8th Station
0645H Mt. Kinabalu Summit 0500H strong typhoon (3,300masl)
0700H Mt. Kinabalu Summit 0615H ETA 7th Station
0930H ETA Laban Rata dormitory 0715H ETA Seikanso Lodge (6th Stn)
1030H ETD Laban Rata Dormitory 0800H ETD 6th Station
1530H ETA Kinabalu Park 0930H ETA Fuji 5th Station
MODERATE SUMMIT PUSH MODERATE
YES, despite aching legs SUMMITED NO, due to strong typhoon
4,095masl HIGHEST ELEVATION REACHED 3,300masl
$538 BUDGET ON ENTIRE TRIP $1,015

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much of thanks for visiting the viewing deck ^_^

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