Anak Tempurung is a cave located in the eastern face of Gunung Tempurung. It is smaller than the famous Gua Tempurung, being less than 1km in length. To get there, we turned into a dirt track just after Sg.Siput South and drove to the eastern face of Gunung Tempurung. We passed a parked bulldozer which is being used to widen the track. This would mean that some form of development is being planned in this area. There were no signs or indications of what this might be. Once we located the stream that runs into Anak Tempurung, we parked and followed the flow of water to find the entrance to the cave nearby. Roots of a large tree growing at the entrance partially blocked our entry but we still managed to squeeze in. The stream in the cave is still quite clean despite the earthworks outside and a few species of fish live in these dark waters, including a white catfish. They are quite shy and could not be caught by hand for a closer look.
White Catfish in the stream
Not being a large cave, the features inside are not very prominent. The usual stalagmites, stalactites, curtains and flowstones can be found here. Mud and stones can be found pressed along the upper walls and ledges of the cave. This shows that the cave floods to a high level when there is heavy rain on the mountains that feed the stream. This is certainly not a cave to explore during a rainstorm! The stream has cut the cave along the eastern face of the hill and it emerges again a few hundred metres south of the entrance, with a larger opening. The stream continues its flow along the side of the hill and its waters may eventually merge with the stream in Gua Tempurung which is still further South.
It was only about half past eleven when we emerged from Anak Tempurung so we decided to also visit Gua Tempurung as it is nearby. As before, we located the stream and followed it to the where it enters Gua Tempurung. There was a large group of tourists resting at the cave opening. They had taken the tour from the main entrance and had just completed the walk to the back exit. There were about 40 of them led by two guides. They were quite noisy and not well under control of the guides. We had a short chat with the guides and proceeded into the cave to do our own exploring. Gua Tempurung is still quite majestic even after commercialisation but the management still has a lot to do to keep people from littering, writing graffitti and generally defacing the features of the cave. It is obvious that this is still going on in the cave as there is fresh grafitti and litter in the cave. More groups kept coming in while we were in the cave showing that the tourist traffic is quite heavy, especially during weekends. A lot of care needs to be taken if Gua Tempurung is to maintain its magnificence and beauty for years to come despite the heavy tourist load it is carrying.
Flowstone in Gua Tempurung
We kept to the stream and walked almost up to the main entrance admiring the features along the way, away from the noisy crowds. There is still quite a bit of animal life in the cave and we came across a few species of arthropods on the cave floor. Near the main entrance, we turned and headed back out to the rear exit to end our exploration for this day. The trip ended with a simple lunch at a coffee shop in Sg. Siput South.
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