Dairy Farm Loop Trail

After having scaled Singapore’s tallest mountain – okay, hill – via the main summit road in Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, we decided to try an alternative backdoor way to get to the summit of Bukit Timah Hill, via the Dairy Farm Loop Trail.

The Dairy Farm Loop Trail can be accessed from Dairy Farm Nature Park, and is just a short hop from Carpark B.

Marked as “Difficult”, the trail was all ready to torture us with its long and endless flight of stairs from the get-go. But we were all prepared for a good vertical workout and proceeded dauntlessly.

A short distance from the start, Dairy Farm Hut appeared and presented us with two options: to continue on the main trail or branch off for a slight detour.

Whichever option we take, the stairs will continue…

…on and on relentlessly.

We could pause anytime mid-step and pretend to enjoy the view around us, while sneaking a few breaths.

Eventually we arrived at North View Hut, where we discovered that we were barely half-way there.

We allowed ourselves a short break, before continuing our climb.

We were given a brief reprieve when the trail flattened out for a bit, giving us a chance to steady our breaths.

Foraging on the forest floor was the Common Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica), whose leafy green body blended in very well with his surroundings. We spent some time playing hide and seek with him, before he hurried off into the forest.

Shortly after, another branch on the trail appeared and we had the option to continue along Dairy Farm Loop Trail to the summit via Rengas Path, or take a detour via Jungle Fall Path. Haven’t had our fill of calf action and thigh burn, we took the turn-off and followed the yellow trail marker for Jungle Fall Path.

The trail took us downhill for a while – all that elevation gain gone to waste – before ascending again. After navigating stairs for most of the way, we were happily distracted by a wee waterfall (Jungle Fall?) flowing down the slope beside the trail. Well, that little trickle is as close as we could get to a waterfall in Singapore.

At times, it may seem tempting to venture off side trails, but we were duly warned of the dangers of doing so and obediently stayed on the main trail.

More huffing and puffing later…

…the trail joins up with the main road leading to the summit of Bukit Timah Hill, where crowds of climbers suddenly materialized before our eyes.

The very familiar summit marker soon appeared, surrounded by crowds of people who were loitering around the summit area.

We made our way back down and found the turn-off for Rengas Path. From there, it was downhill all the way.

We encountered many twists…

…and turns…

…and bumps along the way.

After a short break to catch our breaths and tank up on water, all was good and we made it all the way to the end.

Back at Dairy Farm Nature Park, we were delighted to spot not just one but a family of three Straw-headed bulbuls (Pycnonotus zeylanicus).

Having heard their resonant singing voice many times on our hikes, we were happy to finally make their acquaintance.

It was altogether a pleasant and enjoyable 6.5 km hike along this alternative route up Bukit Timah Hill.