Cycle West Singapore 80km-Training for RTI

Last weekend, I followed Randy to cycle West Singapore for 80km. Slowly but surely, I am training towards 100km and first RTI ( 125 or 150km Round the Island).

(RI trip completed May 2021, read here. You may wish to read our North 50km and East 80km cycling trips too)

Our route covered 80km (90km for Randy) and includes four short breaks. We did take some photos at scenic spots. (Must enjoy your ride journey and have happy memories)

Cycle West Singapore 80km
Cycle West Singapore 80km

RIT for me is not for personal glory, but sort of a bucket list.
We know we can do it physically, but we need to commit the time (actual day and mileage) to achieve our goal.

No need set time limit, nor personal best, just aim for completion and a sense of achievement.

On that note, East side (Tanah Merah Coastal road) is definitely easier to navigate compared to the slopes along Kranji, Lim Chu Kang or old Choa Chu Kang.  East side (From Pasir Ris to TMCR to ECP) has beautiful and wide pavements (PCN). TMCR has dedicated bike lane too!

Relive video:
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*Strava and Relive to capture your bike trip

West side some sections do no have pavement nor PCN (yet), and you will encounter more trucks and dogs too!

01 Break at Causeway Point

Our ride brought us from Sengkang-Seletar-Yishun-Canbera-Woodlands-Kranji-Lim Chu Kang-Jurong West-Bouna Vista-River Valley-Bugis-Kallang-Macpherson-Sengkang

Estimated timing/checkpoints:
0600 Setoff Sengkang
0715 Sembawang Canberra (17km)
0745 Causeway point 20 min break
0850 LCK Jetty (40km)
0950 Lakeside MRT (50km)
1000 Mcd Jurong East (15 min)
1130 Queentown Petrol staton (5 min)
1220 Bugis (70km)
1320 Sengkang (85km)

Sungei Gedong Armour
02 Lim Chu Kang Jetty and Sungei Gedong Armour HQ

For first timers to west side, you should attempt Kranji and Lim Chu Kang only during weekends. There are no pavements and a lot of trucks will be playing the roads during weekdays!

a)Vehicles wise, roads there are relatively quieter Saturday or Sunday but expect hundred of cyclists 🙂

b)Beside the trucks, the slopes along LCK are killers and will really whack your calves. Better ensure you have enough water (hydration and no full bladder). I did not spot any public toilet or coffeeshop for a good 20km (Kranji to Jalan Bahar).

c)Hardcore folks will cycle 3am or 4am too, but the cemeteries look spooky at night

d)There is higher chance of being chased by dogs rather than ghosts. If you do encounter dogs, some experts will recommend out-pacing the dogs by cycling above 40kmh! My foldie max is only 30kmh so I can only go for next options.

Slow down, and dogs will find you too-boring to chase. Otherwise, dismount and pretend to throw a rock. (PRETEND only, otherwise someone might complain dog abuse)

Disclaimer. Please do not blame me if above dog-panic steps fail. I would panic too if a crazy dog threatens to snap at my heels

Fyi. Lim Chu Kang road will become a runway for F15 and F16 during an emergency, do read our 2016 Ex-Torrent blog post.

Back to two wheels, just cycle straight along LCK towards Jalan Bahar, Jalan Boon Lay. You can break at Lakeside or Chinese Garden area. We continued to Jem.

Turn left towards Lakeside Garden (and MRT) at this junction (GPS 1.337888, 103.710052). Just cycle under 10 minutes to reach Lakeside MRT, and you can head towards Jem (Jurong East MRT).

After Jem, turn right at this junction along Boon Lay Way (GPS 1.328629, 103.749727) and just follow the canal ( Ulu Pandan Park Connector)

With respect to Bouna Vista direction, the right side path of canal is more “scenic” and cooling.

03 Temporary path next to Chinese Garden, and Jurong East MRT (2nd break)

Special mention to garang Randy. He keeps motivating me and is my navigation guru, and he does not need Google Maps!

Really helpful to have him around as I am quite poor navigating the West Side of SG.

Old Railway bridge.

Follow canal all the way towards Bouna Vista and Holland Village. Go straight towards Queenstown. Ulu Pandan PCN is about 6km.

Turn Left “small path” (GPS 1.294833, 103.806194) before Queenstown MRT to go along river “Alexandra Canal Linear Park” PCN.

Follow river to Clarke Quay and Boat Quay, look out for pedestrians. There are at least 4 or 5 small junctions to cut across, but route is quiet and cooling as you cycle in between flats and condos.

Colourful Alkaff bridge

From here on, we cycled towards Bugis and Kallang Park Connector.

We were fortunate as the day was warm and not too hot. Nevertheless, 80km took me 7 hours to complete (including breaks).

Back to Sengkang Neighbourhood

Referring to the coast-to-coast map below (credit Straits Time url), we are excited about new upcoming trails across Singapore.

-Does it mean Kranji and LCK will be more cyclist friendly?
– Looking forward to RIR (Round Island Route) as it means we can explore more without cycling on roads

singapore new coast to coast trails
Singapore new coast to coast trails

While we ride, do not forget to enjoy the ride and scenery. Every kilometre is a milestone, a memory.

This post shares Cycle West Singapore 80km, next posts will share Cycle East side 🙂

Sharing some other related posts to trails or Lim Chu Kang below:
-RSAF Ex-Torrent 2016 (LCK runway)
-More details and landmarks about Park Connectors (PCN) at nParks link
-Coast to Coast Walk 42 km from Lakeside to Punggol

SengkangBabies cycling
-Cycle 70 km East, TMCR (link)
-Cycle 80 km West, Lim Chu Kang(link)
-Cycle to Woodlands and back for 50km (link)
-Cycle 50km to explore 3 Reservoirs and 3 parks
-Completed Round Island 140km!  (Click for GPX routing)
-Cycle 20km to Green Corridor (or Marina Bay and Sportshub)

*Read MTB\RoadBike\Foldie selection, & Foldable bike shortlisting
-Follow my family’s cycling experience here .
-Instagram SengkangBabies #skbCycles

A Day in the Army – recruitment drive

Simulation allows soldiers to hone their skills and train their muscle memory in a safe environment. Soldier’s reflexes and instincts will be automatically triggered during an emergency.

Simulations offer soldiers an opportunity to handle real-life scenarios which are otherwise not feasible to practice on real platforms. Example vehicle overturning drills, artillery bombardment or evasive drills from hostile helicopter gunship.

Simulation helps save precious resources like fuel, ammunition and most importantly, time.

With “hands on” confidence, soldiers improve their situation awareness, and are more effective when they get involved in real missions. With effective simulation, Singapore’s NSFs can stand on their own and match professional soldiers in overseas Leopard Main battle tanks proficiency contest.

At the “Army for a Day” recruitment exercise (Sungei Gedong Armour HQ), invited guests got an in depth appreciation of how simulation helps to enhance training. It was fun for guests to experience drifting a 60ton Leopard or testing the Bronco’s gravity defying drive-train, the adrenalin is no less than a Universal Studios ride.

Simulation is virtual, but concentration is real, perspiration is real.

We may be playing a “computer game”, but we can really feel the motion and jolt, when you drive your vehicle up and down the dunes, or when you overturn a Bronco! It was not easy to maneuver my Bionix up the ramp of a landing bridge (picture below).

Here, I would like to thanks and salute all the drivers I have come across. Be it an infantry carrier or a tank, everyone’s lives are in the good hands of our drivers. Drivers are always the last ones to rest after a mission as they need to wash the vehicle. Treat your driver well and he or she will let you eat less humps.

Simulation sounds complicated, but for today’s IPAD generation, the concept of driving a 60ton Leopard is the same as driving a car. The familiar steering wheel, automatic gearbox, the accelerate and brake pedals.
Armour Simulation Sungei Gedong

Live firing was the other highlight of our tour. Nothing comes close to a Leopard tank’s 120mm blast. You can feel the impact and vibes from 50m away. We witnessed a task force (comprising Light strikes, Terrex, Bionixs and Leopards) raining havoc on their targets. Impressive and devastating.

I should know, I was a Bionix gunner during my Armour days (41 and 441). Those days, we had to set up the target boards, pile up endless oil drums under the hot sun. Was glad to know these manual strenuous tasks are no longer necessary, thank you Productivity!

When the Terrex is engaging enemy via it’s turret auto-gun, it reminds me of Sigourney Weaver driving her all-wheel APC (Armoured personal carrier image) crushing ALIENs along the way! Mean, accurate and deadly.

It feels different to revisit Area-D as a civilian, and not in green fatigue. Saribun area offers one of the most scenic landscapes in Singapore (有山有海). Funny, when we are in green, “sightseeing” was the last thing on our mind :p
Singapore Armour live firing

Static army assets were on display, pre-enlistees could get up close to Army toys and armaments.
A Day in the Army recruitment

You can even pretend to be a Leopard tank loader. This round weighs 19kg, imagine how the loader needs to shove the rounds into the barrel for firing. In a real mission, Leopard tank will be “firing on the move”. Just imagine the confine space for the loader.

In wartime, speed (and precision) is everything, you better engage and destroy enemy tanks within xx seconds, or hostile forces will pinpoint your position and return fire.
IMAG4624

Mobile field sanitation, washing, shower and even cook-house. Hope this comfort items will be for humanitarian efforts. I hope there will not come a day when our NSFs demand hot shower in camp (or worse, outfield!)
IMAG4619

A few interesting tidbits from my Armour days:

– the fire power of an Armour battalion is three times that of an infantry (hearsay from my reservist days).
Really dread lugging the 0.5 heavy machine gun and barrels from armskote to vehicle shed!
The countless GPMGs and jerry cans and 1206s!

– I am wondering whether troopers still pack maggie mee, bread and nutella, and cocktail for their 4D3N outfield trips

– Other services always admire Armour roaming around in Area-D, just like armoured taxis. They will not envy us when they see the amount of barang barang we need to dismantle and wash after each exercise!

– Those in M113 (converted to Bionix) always envy those in AMX13 (replaced by Leopards)
– Tankees always get more water, and aircon!
– When in comes to “body maintenance”, troopers have to squeeze into the Bionix hull, ramp, or engine top
– it gets more challenging with each reservist cycle, as soldiers grow horizontally

– Not sure whether there are anymore moon leaves in Saribun. Armoured vehicles use moon leaves for camouflage.

Sweet or sour, once you don a Black Beret, you are part of Armour family.
Once Armour, Always Armour.

Armour Logo

In case you need to find our more details:
A Day in the Army registration (email link provided)
Senang Diri blog for more SAF news
Fanpage Cyberpioneer
Leopard Main Battle Tank Youtube
Bronco Youtube

* NDP 2015 will involve Mobile columns again (every 5 years). Do not MISS it!