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Gonna share one of my extreme hiking experience, but gonna use "tag-lish" for this one,dahil sa sobrang unforgettable experience nito eh hindi ko sya maeexpress fully when I use english alone lol. Like my usual way of writing, para lang akong nagkwekwento.. with feelings 😅.
I always want to try major hikes even if some of our so-called "minor hikes" eh kasing hirap na ng major ang mga assaults. We even customized our dri-fit for that hike, we were really excited.
It was my birthday hike last July, 2015. We traverse Mt. Makiling from Sto. Tomas, Batangas to UPLB Laguna - or popularly known as MAKTRAV. It has a height of 1, 090+ MASL and trail difficulty of 5/9. Yes, 5/9 difficulty, but it feels like 7/9 for me haha.
MAKTRAV has 30 stations. Mixed trail. Assault, gradual, long walk. From station 1 to station 9 was a bit of a challenge having that steep assault and narrow trail. While station 10 to 19 was a long walk. This was the first mountain that I almost cry and gave up. I wanna go back but I can't dahil traverse kami. And that was the time that I'm so heavy, I weight 55kls plus the weight of my bag itself.
Rain started to fall when we're in station 10. Hindi sya ambon. Bagyo sya. 1st time namin binagyo sa taas kaya walang clearing. Hindi ko na halos maappreciate yung ganda ng Makiling dahil bukod sa walang clearing nagmamadali na kami dahil sobrang lakas ng ulan, basa na kami. Sobrang lamig, at di kami pwede huminto kasi lalong delikado. Kakapanood lang namen nung movie na Mount Everest. Ganun na ko kapraning haha. Nakakasad lang na there's no view in the summit.
And because of rain, limatik's started to show. Limatik is the leeches that inhabit Philippine forests. Naglalabasan sila kapag umuulan, that's why always double check if the area has limatik, summer is a perfect time if you want to avoid them. We knew that there's a limatiks there but dahil di namin inexpect ang ulan, nagulat ako sa dami nila. We brought alcohols and cotton buds, actually we always have first aid kit everytime we go on hiking, even biogesic coz most of the time, inaatake ako ng migraine ko dahil sa sobrang init.
Medyo ready kami coz we did some research, we even put our earphones dahil takot kami mapasukan sa ears. The sad part was, yung guide namin walang gamit man lang na first aid, mahal mahal ng bayad eh, what if wala kami dala.
Anyways, 1st victim of limatik in our group, pumasok sa mata nya. Ilang minuto din bago maalis. She had to endure the pain of alcohol and cotton buds in her eyes. And naging attentive na kami. Kada kumakapit spray kme ng alcohol. We're looking at each other to check our faces. I even got limatik on my cheeks. Yay. I remember nung tumingin ako sa friend ko na kasunod ko, may limatik sya sa noo, inisprayan ko sya agad, automatic..kaya pati eyes nya nsprayan, my bad lol.
Mahirap na nga sya dahil sa limatik and ulan, dumating pa kami sa pinakamahirap lalo na phase. It's at station 19 where we need to pull ourselves up with ropes to ascend what they called "haring bato" That's the hardest part dahil sa sobrang putik wala ng kakapitan yung sandals/shoes namin kasi madulas na. That's why yung guide namin, meron sa taas na hahatak habang nakakapit kami sa rope at meron sa baba na itutulak pwet namin pataas haha. Whew, kapag naaalala ko, I'm so grateful that we survived Mount Makiling. Napakaepic grabe. Imagine, we had to climb but there's no rocks and even solid na lupa na matatapakan. Dumudulas kami if hindi kami itutulak from behind.
After that another long walk na pababa. Habang naglalakad kami bigla na lang lumalabas yung mag limatik sa paa namin, nagugulat n lang kame my dugo na.We were so tired to react to limatiks, kaya iniignore na lang namen sila, lalabas din naman sila ng katawan kapag busog na haha. Need namin magmadali dahil padilim na, at I don't want to see Makiling the diwata of that mountain lol. Mahirap maabutan ng dilim sa gubat, dun kami hindi ready and may pasok pa kami sa work kinabukasan.
Finally,nakababa na kami., natapos na ang duguang pakikibaka sa mga limatik, pagyakap sa mapuputik na bato at pag iwas sa mga bangin. We gathered to pay our guides, and that was the time na nalaman namin na yung isa naming kasamayung dinapuan limatik sa mata, muntik na syang mahulog sa bangin. Buti na lang payat sya at yung bag nyang dala Hydro bag lang and buti na lang din pagkadulas nya napahawak sya sa damo kaya natulungan sya makaakyat ng iba nameng kasama.
We almost lost her. Nauuna sila sa trail eh kaya pala pagdaan namin dun sa area kung san sya nahulog natakot kami kasi halos nabutas na yung half ng dadaanan eh bangin na sa side na yun. It was already getting dark so we decided to walk since no motorcycle arrives. Yung feeling na gusto ko na lang gumulong dahil bibigay na legs ko. Ten hours hike was no joke. Plus the rain and limatiks added to the challenge. After more than an hour of walking, we reached station 1 at the gate of UPLB, where we washed up and ride a jeepney going to the highway. Hanggang pag uwe pahirapan sa pag sakay ng bus paCubao. We ate at Jollibee muna and its funny na may lumabas pa na limatik sa paa ko -____-, busog na busog sya, bilog na nga eh.😅😅
I still want to go back there, but summer season haha. I don't want to experience limatik again. Challenging but full of memories. It's one for the books.