Rajang River Cruise

Succour
21st June 2009, 07:12
If there are any Blue Funnel or Glen Line lads who might have visited the Rajang River Sarawak for logs during their time at sea. Pandaw Cruises are starting their Rajang River Cruises in July.
See below if interested, I will be on it in August.
Succour
http://www.borneo.com.au/sarawak/tours/rej1

oceangoer
21st June 2009, 07:19
If there are any Blue Funnel or Glen Line lads who might have visited the Rajang River Sarawak for logs during their time at sea.

We used to go up there in the early '60's for sawn Red Meranti timber and a good game of football against the sawmill.

Water paint separations of various cargo parcels together with the problem of "keeping the face straight", and the Cargo Plan became a nightmare.

Bill Davies
21st June 2009, 23:21
No thanks! They would have to offer the 'Cruise' free.

Bill

jmcg
21st June 2009, 23:46
Could do worse than the Rajang. I enjoyed the many trips there + Jesselton and Sandakan. Have promised myself a trip back to Singapore before I'm too old and cantakerous.

Will keep it in mind. Thanks for posting the "gen".

BW

J

Tom Inglis
22nd June 2009, 12:43
If there are any Blue Funnel or Glen Line lads who might have visited the Rajang River Sarawak for logs during their time at sea. Pandaw Cruises are starting their Rajang River Cruises in July.
See below if interested, I will be on it in August.
Succour
http://www.borneo.com.au/sarawak/tours/rej1

I was middy and up to 2nd mate in Blue Funnel and like many others, my memories of Rajang River are not that good. I remember more that once we were stuck there for days and days [weeks] in endless rain. "Banyack ujang" and as soon as we opened up the hatches it was not long before the cry went up "ujang datang, tutup lacass" Yes the football was interesting in the quagmire caused by the perpetual rain. It's nice to remember these days and days swinging at anchor in the Rajang and the excitement when a Ben boat turned up to break the monotomy. as for a cruise? No thanks. I like the sun on my back without the rain.
I am sure it will be interesting for some however. Let's hear about how it went after your trip in August
All the best
Tom Inglis

Gareth Jones
22nd June 2009, 13:00
Could do worse than the Rajang. I enjoyed the many trips there + Jesselton and Sandakan. Have promised myself a trip back to Singapore before I'm too old and cantakerous.

Will keep it in mind. Thanks for posting the "gen".

BW

J

Just came back from a Singapore holiday and although the holiday was OK, the place is totally unrecognisable - Bugis street long gone -it's all spotlessly clean - no drunken sailors - no men with womens chests !! - Only met 2 Brits - some aussies but the majority of tourists that we saw were mainly Indian, Korean and Japanese.

Pat Kennedy
22nd June 2009, 13:52
Up the Rajang again? You must be joking, it was a hellhole. I saw dead bodies floating downstream there and no one taking a blind bit of notice.
Hot, wet, smelly, and infested with all kinds of flying insects, some as big as your fist.
A bit like some pubs in Birkenhead.
Pat

jmcg
22nd June 2009, 16:38
That is why it was so interesting! Another place -very much sanitised was/is Labuan. Beautiful clear water. Autolycus was the first BF vessel to load either latex or palm oil from one of these Borneo ports. There was one hell of a party I can recall. It might have been Jesselton or Labuan. It wasnt Sandakan though. Remember the "Sandakan Queen". Just for the "sailors".

Never had any probs with the mosies -except for Bangkok.

As for dead bodies - a couple of ED chaps told me that during the Nigerian /Biafran war it was very common to see dozens of dead bodies trapped between the jetties and ship sides in Lagos and indeed up the creeks.

Gareth

Yes, Ive been told that the place is but a shadow of its former glory and has been sanitised to such an extent that it is thoroughly modern city setting the standards for cleanliness and ecology.

BW

J

Alistair Macnab
22nd June 2009, 16:52
After calling at Sandakan, we called at Boihan and Wallace Bay in North Borneo. Perhaps you Blue Funnel or Ben Line chaps can freshen up this old man's memory of these logging/sawed timber load ports?
We used to call there regularly on Bank Line's Oriental African Line in the 1950s but never went to Rajang River ports. Whatever the port names. they were all somewhat primitive!

holland25
23rd June 2009, 00:12
In the late 50s I must have loaded in the Rejang every trip I did with BF. On one occasion two of us were offered a trip to the town, which I think must have been Sibu, in a long canoe with a big engine on the back. The crew consisted of the helmsman and the lookout. The lookout had elongated eardrums so I suppose he must have been a Dyak. His job was most crucial, since he was watching for obstacles in the river. At the speed we were travelling a collision would have been unpleasant, and perhaps allowed us to meet up with some of the natural inhabitants of the river, who may have resented our intrusion.It was a fascinating trip, done just before dark.We walked around the town for a while, probably had a drink, attended a Chinese wedding party, at which we were made welcome.When it came time to return to the ship the lookout had disappeared, it was rumoured he had met up with a lady friend. We were directed to the work boats which were taking a shift change of loaders, so we returned in a more sedate manner.It was a memorable run ashore and one of the bonuses of seagoing.

Ken Green
23rd June 2009, 15:47
Early in 1953,(I believe it would be march),I was third mate on the Liberty ship "Flintshire" loading logs in the Rejang river. There were no shore lights or lit beacons to check that we were not dragging the anchor during the hours of darkness. As the night began to fall the Mate called me to get into a sampan, gave me an oil lamp, pointed towards a beacon and told me to place the lamp on the flat base of it. As we were about to push off from the ship he shouted, "If a big hairy arm comes out of the jungle and grabs you, drop the lamp, it's the only one we've got"!!

I transferred to Straits Steamship Co. in December of '53 and spent many years sailing up and down the Rejang as second mate, mate and master calling at Binatang, Sareki(I don't think that is spelt right!),Sibu and one fantastic trip right up the river to Kapit. No charts for the river above Sibu, all we had was a Land and Survey map to go on! Once there we loaded a full cargo of illipe nuts for transshipment at Singapore. It took us two days to get up to Kapit against the flow and twelve hours to get back.
Ah happy memories!

Bill Davies
26th June 2009, 21:19
Straits SS Co. seemed to be a favourite move for the BF Mates who grew weary of the promotion prospects. Capt John Bax a member of this site was one of the alumni.
From all accounts life in the Hong Kong companies seemed equally as good and the promotion was rapid also.
If I had my time again I may have chosen that route. Living on the Peak in HK does have its attractions.

Paul Barford
30th June 2009, 15:49
If there are any Blue Funnel or Glen Line lads who might have visited the Rajang River Sarawak for logs during their time at sea. Pandaw Cruises are starting their Rajang River Cruises in July.
See below if interested, I will be on it in August.
Succour
http://www.borneo.com.au/sarawak/tours/rej1

Was many times up there whilst in Ben Line, we regarded the place and Telok Ayer similarly-as RnR after the 'hectic' stays in Bangkok and Manila. Usually on of the first load ports before heading back home. Very first time I was there was on the Bennevis in 1972-none air conditioned steam ship (formerly aircraft carrier). Sustained a perforated ear drum on that trip and was sent up-river to Seriki to the doctors. Always remember-Lao's clinic-he looked in my ear with a huge "Ever-Ready" torch, gave me an injection in the back-side and a few 'sweeties' to take. Later as no improvement (surprise surprise!)I saw old Doc Bain in Singapore who fixed me up, he told me the tablets were in fact like Parma Violets!!
Not on my holiday list-even after 37 years.(Thumb)

Barber Hector
30th June 2009, 15:49
My first three voyages deep sea were on the Monmouthshire. Very comfortable old ship. We did the Rejang timber loading as last port before Singapore and the bus-stop ports on the way home.
Gentleman A.K.Sanderson was our old man; we used to play the local saw mill team [Williams family ?] at football on occasion and one voyage we actually played the Diomed's team. Scarface Sanderson was their old man. Well we did our best but they had a white crowd and beat us easily. I actually passed out due to lack of salt through sweating too much.
I remember the Rejang mainly through the lack of salt issue and I feel on the moral high ground when these numpties ashore keep going on that salt will kill us.
Also it is where I spent my 21st birthday. 49 years ago yesterday, 29th.
My oppo Clive Knibb almost died one night when a beastie dropped down on him when he was lying on his bunk reading a book. The yells could be heard around the ship !!
The ship's agent [Borneo Company] would come up from Sibu to deal with the ship. Always thought they were a strange lot, but after all it was Borneo and the heat never abated.
Rejang. Good memories, giant beasties, mossies that loved us but no way would I go back for a repeat.

Tai Pan
1st July 2009, 11:05
Bohihan. That was a pituresque place, a small lagoon and one house, the agents. We went ashore in the Lifeboat complete with sarnies and beer, had a great afternoon swimming , however 3rd mate forgot about a small tidal drop and we were stuck on the sand, (I think this story is told in Voyage East) got it off after a lot of heaving, being the R/O ,I held the painter, very important job. ship was Ulysses, Capt Harris.
Rejang River. ugh, no thanks.

CaptJim
13th August 2009, 18:29
We used to go up there in the early '60's for sawn Red Meranti timber and a good game of football against the sawmill.

Water paint separations of various cargo parcels together with the problem of "keeping the face straight", and the Cargo Plan became a nightmare.

did my first trip up the rejang on the rhesus in 49 OM jock weir again on the glenshiel in 54 OM albert lane the attached photos might bring back some memories. remember the football against the sawmill --the played in bare feet if i remember right - and still beat us . the mate on the photo is austin rundel a cornish man

Succour
3rd September 2009, 12:04
Very good 8 nights on Pandaw Orient.
Passengers were a mature mix of Australian, German, Japanese, American, and British. The Skipper was from UK, the crew a mix of Malay and Myanmarese and the mate, pilot, and shore guide were local lads from Kuching. A dry spell meant the river wasn't at full flow and therefore the Pelagus rapids were very tame. After joining the vessel at Sibu we set off and called at Kapit, Kanowit, Balleh river, Muau, Tanjing Kunyit, Sarekei, Song and finally back to the Rajang Delta and Sibu a distance of 719km.
Shore excursions to Iban Longhouses, Pepper and rubber farms, historic forts from the Rajah Brooke era. Songkit weaving factory and schools. The Guide was half Iban so he was able to give us lots of local info. The crew and pursers were a nice bunch of lads, and good sports doing Elvis impersonations and Iban dances. The Bar was 24hr complimentary, with locally brewed Tiger and Stella Artois. Attached a few pics of logs being towed, Kapit, Kanowit, and a pic of the sundeck and bar. All in all great fun especially for us old lads who had been here before in the sixties. Mossies weren't a problem, a few big flying things and beautiful butterflies. Good food by Malay chef. a most enjoyable trip and recommended.
Thanks Lads.
Succour.

14662

14663

14664

14665
14661