Friday, July 27, 2012

Bukit Gombak Hill (2)

Recently, my blogger friend Chun See had uploaded several pictures of Bukit Gombak taken in the 1960s on his heritage blog. Prompted by this, I wrote a post on Bukit Gombak as well and included a sketch superimposed over a RAF reconnaissance photo of the ridge taken in 1958.

Another friend Peter asked if I could do a comparison of my sketch of Gombak against the pictures that Chun See had. Peter is more of a graphics person than of reading texts. So this is what I did for him.

click on the photo to get an enlarged view for clarity

The top section is the aerial sketch I made superimposed onto a montage from the RAF photos.
The bottom section is the picture from Chun See showing Bukit Gombak from the 'back' taken from the Tengah area.
In the middle is a photo I took 2 days ago from Choa Chu Kang. I went to Tengah to try to get the same angle as the bottom picture, but the view is now completely obscured by trees.

In the middle photo, the buildings on the left are the Bukit Batok Fire Station and ITE College, while the tall white blocks on the right are the flats along Bukit Batok West Ave 5 which were allocated to the ex-Hillview Estate residents when they were resettled enbloc there.

Here's another little trivia about Bukit Gombak which many may not know about.
The ridge along Bukit Gombak hill has a 'valley' in the middle.
Geologically, this is known as a COL, making the ridge saddle shaped.
You can see this clearly in the bottom picture above.
In the top picture you can see a kampong located in this col, just at the word "outline".

This physical feature actually gives Bukit Gombak 2 peaks along its ridge.
The higher peak is at 139m (where the radar station was) while the lower peak is at 132m (left side of that kampong)
Based on this fact, Bukit Gombak technically would have the 2nd AND 3rd highest peaks in Singapore. However, most geologist consider Bukit Gombak as a single entity and so Bukit Batok Hill retains its 3rd position at 120m and while Mount Faber is 4th position at 105m.

In the middle photo, the col is now obscured by trees and most people do not see it anymore.

Addendum: (Aug 2012) - SURPRISED.
I finally found out the name of the hill on the other end of the Gombak Ridge! You'll be as surprise as I was. Click here for the answer.


  1. i spend my childhood days till age of 11 at the foot of bt gombak, just beside the railway crossing. That was from 1973-1984. I remembered very well that i saw 3 very big metal doors which was closed and my dad told me that those were tunnels built by the british which leads to naval base during pre war times and today that place is occupied by the MINDEF. I googled for some info on these tunnels but there is nothing available. I'm not sure you have any info on this. Last but not least, i enjoy your blog alot as it brings back the rustic image of 9th & 10th mile.

    1. There were lots of rumours about that installation but mainly all hearsay. I do not know much about it though.
      Thanks for visiting my blog and I appreciate your comments and compliments.