Friday, December 21, 2012

LV Outreach - Taking the children to Manila Ocean Park - November 2012

We promised to return for 3 of the childrens birthdays when we first visited the foundation last September. Make it somehow extra special. Maybe some food, prizes, games and a photobooth. But we never anticipated that asking for sponsorship from friends and families will allow us to make it even more special for all the children. And after a few weeks of planning with friends who dedicated time to help, it was final, we will be taking them to Manila Ocean Park!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Sagada, Mt. Province - December 2012

There will always be something in Sagada worth returning to. The sweet mountain chill, the smell of pines in the morning, the un-even terrains, picturesque landscapes, sunrises that makes you take off your fleece and sunsets that invite the cold back, cheap veggies, brown rice, and if you're lucky- a wedding or a local festival.
I have fallen in love with this place ever since we came here last 2009 and even when the distance sums up to a clear 12hours+ of travel, the laid back life in a cool, stress free environment makes it all worth it.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Mt. Daraitan Traverse - Tanay Rizal/Gen. Nakar Quezon - December 2012

My day started at noon on the 7th of December, with an eat all you can lunch team building at Ortigas, followed by a collegue visit at the Lung center, then a 9hr shift that ended at 2am on the 8th. Heavy shit. Hardly any rest. And a lot in mind. I had less than two hours to finalize and limit my pack to 15kilos as I had to leave at 4am to meet with the rest of TUCO (The United Climbers Organization), same guys I frequently join and adopt myself into- supporting their climbs and causes. This time, its a climb to Tanay Rizal, starting at Barangay Daraitan crossing General Nakar Quezon and back.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Mt. Daguldol - San Juan, Batangas - October 2012

It was final. Push, even if it rains. Push, even when its just the three of us.

We were initially opting to do a 2-hit climb. Mt. Maculot, then Mt. Manabu.But we were all looking for one that we have not yet tried. So even when Pinoy Mountaineer claims that it is a 5hour 670MASL climb, (it's usually longer when us, normal people pace) we head on out to San Juan Batangas and climbed Mt. Daguldol.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Visiting a Childrens Foundation - September 2012

Me and my wife were excited to have been invited by Chie to be part of her team. As her yearly birthday celebration (and as one of her many), she always makes it a point to help out in the community. This time, at a children's foundation in Quezon City

For reasons of misrepresentations and avoiding scam, the foundation, although known and recognized by the DSWD- appreciates that their information is not spread through social media-reason they restrict being named.
We divided the children into 3 groups (Team Spirit, Team Sam and the Cuties, and Team SpongeBob) and went on with the day, a game at a time. The children also had a lot up their sleeves- presentations showcasing their well rehearsed dances and songs.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Boracay Island, Malay - September 2012

Date of Travel : 23-25 September 2012

There's not much left new to say and explore in Boracay that has not been written, but as we have previously intended, we have returned to this island in Malay for some unfinished business. This time, with less crowd, less hype and as a domino effect, this is followed by cheaper rates, stress free strolls and the beach all to ourselves, almost. We went Para sailing, enjoyed Puka beach, spent less on food(well, we tried), and watched the sun set at White beach.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Mt. Mangatarem - Mangatarem, Pangasinan - August 2012

Mt. Mangatarem in Brgy. Pacalat, Mangatarem Pangasinan holds no joke when it comes to trail difficulty and challenge. We were the first group to be allowed to discover the mountain range, trek the locals trail and in spite of the exhausting hike, we were there to accomplish 3 things; Plant trees, do a Medical mission and carry out a school outreach program. This, all through the efforts of Event organizer T.U.C.O (The United Climbers Organization), in cooperation with Kabataang Binuklod ng Kalikasan Mountaineering Society (KABAN) and Hunyango Mountaineering Society (HMS). The project was called, Mt. Mangatarem 3-4-1 (Tree for Juan).

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tacloban, Leyte - July 2012

Tacloban is surrounded by mountain ranges and is a city by the sea. Small and laid back, probably one that pars in the line of Tagbilaran, Silay and Dumaguete. Taclobanons speak and fully understand Tagalog and is not difficult to communicate with given the dialect barrier. The gentle and very approachable Warays were very kind to us during our short 3 day trip, guiding us in our misadventures in getting lost in their small city. If you're a fan of immersing in a place you can retire to, Tacloban is worth checking out. People are sparsed, evident in their Downtown area, where we have often wondered why concentration of the masses is not as heavy. Well disciplined, Traffic is respected, as well as parking and jeep routes. We were able to go to Rafael's Farm, Caluwayan Palm Island Resort and spent our last day just wandering about the city starting off at the Mac Arthur Park, then to Sto. Nino Shrine and Magsaysay Boulevard.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Mt. Banahaw de Tayabas - Tayabas, Quezon - June 2012

KABANAHAW Cleanup Crusade 2012 – Tayabas Tree Planting Project
Personal Struggles.
I must admit, I've been tossing coins and consulting logic to determine if my capacity to climb will enable me to carry on this cause. I am not a fan of high impact climbing (climbing in huge groups) but if with a cause, defeats my reservations as well as attempt to push myself to my limits. But that was besides the point. At 2158 MASL and an uber tight Itinerary of 1 day to climb, I personally think its suicide. There was also no assurance of a water source leaving us packed with heavy loads to cover our fluid needs.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Mt. Pico De Loro - Ternate, Cavite - June 2012

I was excited to test the Deuter Aircontact 55+10 and the Apexus Halcon tent- my ever supportive wife allowed purchase- that 2 weeks before the climb, I was already walking our small unit, hip-testing, simulating and experimenting with the load distribution.
Climbing buddies, and couple, Gian and Leo of, invited me once again to climb with them for an overnight hike to Mt. Palay palay, Pico De Loro.
They picked me up on a taxi after my shift and we took a bus at Edsa Crame going Baclaran. From there we held a JL Liner bus going to Maragondon. (P78). One can also take a Saulog bus to Ternate at the same area. These two towns are border to border with each other and tricycles that can take you to DENR are available at most road sides.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Laiya - San Juan Batangas - May 2012

Way back when we were children, with not much obligations and responsibilities to attend to, we were fortunate to be able to freely enjoy yearly summer vacations with our families. At which point, even though we highly anticipate the change of scene and the fun the outdoors bring, being children, we often do not see nor appreciate the value of family bonding's. These things that we let pass, we miss and appreciate come time that we all grew up and have families of our own.
Through the efforts of my wife and her sibs, a nearby get away was set. Laiya, San Juan Batangas. My family has been here before and the December winds that the sea brought back then reminded me of how peaceful the place was.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Mt. Banahaw, Cleanup Crusade - Kinabuhayan, Quezon - May 2012

The Kabanahaw Clean up drive is an initiative headed by KABAN (Kabataang Binuklod ng Kalikasan) Mountaineering Society to enlist and organize groups of mountaineers and freelancers to pick and clean up garbage from the still recovering Mt. Banahaw after each years holy week-when devotees flock the mountain for pilgrimage and all sorts of religious reasons.
This year is the 7th Kabanahaw Clean up Crusade.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Mt. Batulao - Nasugbu, Batangas - April 2012

There's no easy mountain to climb. Each, unique. Mt. Batulao in Nasugbu Batangas, a 4/9 811MASL Minor climb is one of them so called day hikes that beginners will find challenging and rewarding at the same time. I’ve been browsing photos and reading blog posts about this mountain and have often mistaken its saw teeth ridges as one from the great Guiting Guiting. The magnificent range of the mountains that defines the old and new trail is as well an art on its own.
I was fortunate enough to have survived a couple of day hikes, some turned 12hour hikes namely and I have scaled twice each, Manabu and Maculot and once in Makiling UPLB trail, but that's just to emphasize that I am a noobie at the hobby and a lamer for that matter.
I find it jaw dropingly awesome that the Pro’s can climb this mountain in 75minutes using the new trail. Nothing is impossible, but wheres the fun in that? LOL.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tagbilaran-Panglao, Bohol - March 2012

Date of Travel : 14-17 March 2012

Second time In Bohol.
There is so much to appreciate in Bohol and personally, I could say that it's bang for your budget. Back in 2009, we were able to do the Country and Panglao Tour and visit most of the significant boast-abouts of Bohol. The Chocolate hills, the Man-Made Forest, Bayoyoy in Dauis, The Baclayon Church, Loboc River (just to name a few), as well as Balicasag and Panglao Islands. This year, we decided to return with an initial plan to just beach bum and relax. Although the IT was not as fat as the previous, we were still able to tire ourselves while relaxing our minds to the laid back feel of Tagbilaran and the less Tourist-Merchant Stressed beaches of Panglao and Balicasag.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Mt. Makiling - Los Baños, Laguna - March 2012

Setting Expectations. Mt. Makilng, Peak 2, UP Forestry trail.
1090 MASL, Approximately 4hours of hike and limatiks. Basically, thats what I expected from this, my first 1 thousand meters above sea level climb. Admittedly, I paid less mind and preparation seeing Geralds photos of a seemingly easy wide rough road trail. But none the less I was excited, a bit nervous as my knees and ankles were oddly giving out signs of pinches of pains a few days before the hike. (and previous disclaimer still applies)

Friday, February 17, 2012

Mt. Maculot - Cuenca, Batangas - Febrauary 2012

You know you're out of shape when you easily pant, suffer knee inflammations at a rated 3/9 minor trek and finish a 2hour climb/descent more than the projected. Then again the latter is debatable and panting is expected when you do Mt. Maculot..

Mt. Maculot Redux. I was invited by couples Gian and Leo to join them do Maculot. My wife was then forced to get herself some clothing and gear to abide by my invitation to drag her with me. So it was the 4 of us.
We took the same route when I first did Maculot with only a few differences.
  • 3am-4:30am - Bus at Cubao Araneta - Old Puregold area. To Batangas, Tambo Exit. (P132x2)
  • 4:30am-5:15am - Tapsi at Tessies Goto - Tambo Exit. (P60x2)
  • 5:15am-5:45am - Jeep to Cuenca - (P20x2)
  • 5:45am-5:55am - Tricycle to Jump off, passed by Barangay Registration. (P20x2 + P10x2 Environmental Fee)
  • 6:15am-9:05am - Trek to Campsite, rest then off to the Rockies.
  • Lunch at the Rockies.
  • A Cold Refreshing Sprite care of the 711 at the Campsite (P35x2)
  • 12:45 Descent.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Boracay Island, Malay - December 2011

Date of Travel : 15-18 December 2011
Disclaimer: A huge amount of resource has already been dedicated in finding ones way in Boracay. Being a Boracay virgin, I have listed those that I think will assist first timers, who would like to have a tip of the ice idea of what this place has to offer. 
We are coffee loving people who prefers spending vacations in a sound and quiet environment and here we list our sentiments and opinions about how Boracay appealed to us.

Boracay for Noobs.
Domestically , there are two ways to get to Boracay from Manila. Via Kalibo and Caticlan; the long and short route. Although the Caticlan route is preferable, ticket price restrictions during the season we went there is still viable above the latter.

The Kalibo Route.
If you know or have reviewed your Geographic’s or read user experiences through blogs,(which should be a requirement to anyone going places) you’ll see and know that the municipality of Kalibo in the province of Panay requires:

  • 1 and a half hour van/bus ride to the Caticlan Jetty Port
  • 15minute boat transfer to the Island of Boracay
  •  20minute tricycle/multicab ride to your preferred resort.
Make sure you alot extra leeway for ticket purchase and van/bus waiting time. This is important so as not to miss your schedule and flight going home.
The Caticlan route however, only requires a P50-5minute trike ride to get to the port then cross the island.