sign in a cave in Laos

16 July 2012

Gunung Kanthan quarry

Gunung Kanthan is the northernmost limestone hill in the Kinta Valley. It is also one of the largest hills. The Kinta Valley is approx 40 km long running north to south, with the city of Ipoh roughly in the middle. Ipoh is the capital of Perak, in West Malaysia.

The biggest known cave in Gunung Kanthan is Gua Kanthan. This cave is home to an endemic trapdoor spider, Liphistius kanthan.

Gunung Kanthan is being quarried by Lafarge.
Their plant is on the west side of the hill across the Ipoh to Kuala Kangsar trunk road. The railway line runs past the works.
Gua Kanthan is at the southern end of the hill which is currently untouched by the quarrying, but for how long????
On a visit in Nov 2011 I drove along the whole eastern side of Gunung Kanthan (green line). These first few photos are the untouched southeast side of the hill, where there are fish ponds and gardens.
This cave was visible from the track but when we tried to get nearer, we found the land occupied by an (illegal?) monastery
and the monks would not let us in as they said it was a meditation place. It looked like they were occupying quite a large cave. Ponds and gardens surrounding the monastery
This guy was slowly crossing the road
Another cave, or at least a large opening
We then came to the centre of the hill, where the quarry has bisected the hill.
Note the red excavator on the hillslope (below)
This is now the northeast side of the hill. The JCB was sending down a lot of stones
It looked as if there could be caves hidden behind the rubble at the base of the hill
Field of corn
Half the hill is quarried, half is still pristine
Driving along the northeast side, another large opening
Towards the north end the track got smaller and was blocked by a fence, so we were unable to get to the very end of the hill.

On the return, another view of the centre of the hill
and the Lafarge plant is visible

On a caving trip to Gua Kanthan in 1993, we exited via the back door and tried to walk around the hill to look for caves. However we had trouble negotiating the vegetation and the swamps and saw no caves and later found ourselves in the quarry workings

Guunung Kanthan register number Prk 47/01.

© Liz Price
No reproduction without permission

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