Midyear Mountain Madness: Tarak Ridge – 09/22-23/2012

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(To keep the sequence in their proper chronological order, I should really be blogging about my Taiwan trip right now. But since I’ve been writing about mountains for the past few entries, I thought I’d stay on that trend and write about another climb that happened in the middle of the year. And besides, I haven’t yet decided how I’d blog about my Taiwan trip so allow me to dilly-dally a bit while I’m taking some ideas into consideration.)

Like the past 3 mountains I’ve been to, this climb to Tarak Ridge in Bataan was unplanned.  The way we in HLGG schedule our minor climbs is like this: Continue reading

Midyear Mountain Madness: Mt. Sembrano – 06/23/2012

I was in third year high school when I first climbed a mountain.  It was located in the town of Jalajala, Rizal.  Our section had an outreach/exposure activity among the fisher folk of that town and as an extra assignment, our math teacher tasked us to measure the height of a nearby mountain using a length of rope and a meter stick.  I don’t remember the locals ever mentioning the name of that mountain, and frankly I didn’t really care.  I had no idea that almost 2 decades later, I would take mountain climbing as a hobby. Continue reading

Midyear Mountain Madness: Mt. Arayat – 05/06/2012

(Photo courtesy of Vernz Fabroa)

I’m typing this entry in probably the worst manner of cramming on this side of blogging.  The year has almost ended yet I’m writing about an event that isn’t even past the midpoint of the year.  Meanwhile, there are 3 more mountains, 4 provinces and 1 overseas trip that I would still have to write an entry each about that I would need to skim through when I come up with a year-ender entry. Continue reading

Midyear Mountain Madness: Mt. Cristobal – 04/29/2012

(Photo courtesy of Vernz Fabroa)

Located between the provinces of Laguna and Quezon, Mt. Cristobal has perhaps an undeserved reputation of being the “Devil’s Mountain”.  Supposedly this differentiates it from the neighboring Mt. Banahaw, which is reputedly a sacred mountain to the many local cults inhabiting the environs of both mountains.  As it became apparent to me later on, Mt. Cristobal turned out to be a pleasantly charming mountain, and quite possibly my new favorite day hike destination. Continue reading

Holy Week 2012: Apo Reef (Day 2) and Pandan Island

Didn’t get to have much sleep that night both because I retired to my tent rather late, and that I normally have trouble sleeping in unfamiliar surroundings.  I guess this was a good thing because oversleeping and waking up sweltering inside the tent under the blazing summer sun was not such a good prospect.  My shallow sleep enabled me to discern when daylight was nearing.  And when I finally opened my tent, this is the view that greeted me: Continue reading

Holy Week 2012: Apo Reef (Day 1)

The previous night, we crashed in this small resort in the town of Sablayan.  We were exhausted, grimy and, for a few of us, bruised and injured from our torturous Mt. Iglit climb.  Needless to say, we were glad to have been able to wash up, have dinner, and lie down on real cushioned beds to rest our overworked backs and legs.  Some of us were still able to have a few drinks to cap the night.  I would have loved to join them, but I was just too dead tired, and it was already getting late. Continue reading

Holy Week 2012: Penitencia sa Mt. Iglit (ikalawang yugto)

Viernes Santo na.  Gumising kami ng mga 4am para makapag-almusal at makapag-handa sa aming summit assault sa Mt. Iglit.  Hindi pa malamig nang natulog kami nung nakaraang gabi, pero sa oras ng pag-gising namin ay maginaw na.  Ang una kong ginawa ay nagbihis sa loob ng tent ko ng pang-akyat ng bundok.  At dahil malapit nang mamatay ang baterya ng flashlight ko, yung BlackBerry na lang ang ginamit kong ilaw. Continue reading

Holy Week 2012: Penitencia sa Mt. Iglit (unang yugto)

(photo courtesy of Herbert Lapuz)

Para maiba naman, magta-Tagalog ako dito sa Mt. Iglit series dahil ilang beses ko nang iniisip kung paano ko ikukwento ito …at ang pakiramdam ko, parang walang dating yung lahat ng pinagdaanan ko sa putaragis napakahirap na bundok na ito kung magi-English ako.  Oo nga pala, lahat ng litrato dito ay hindi sa akin.  Puro video ang kinunan ko dahil  mas madaling ilabas yung BlackBerry nung araw na iyon. Yung DSLR kasi masyadong mabusisi. Continue reading

Holy Week 2012: Sitio Tamisan Outreach

When HLGG undertakes a major activity, it always follows this pattern: first, the outreach; next, the mountain climbing activity; and finally, beach bumming or simply just bumming around somewhere where we could relax our aching muscles from the climb.  Our trip in Occidental Mindoro followed exactly this pattern and so I will first blog about our outreach activity. Continue reading