Puting Bato Bago Biente Uno

Hep hep! My more than 30-days of being officially unemployed has never been full of boredom. Thanks to God and to every individual whose with me in those precious time. ๐Ÿ™‚ Those days are filled with too much excitement that has something to do with: 1. unexpected future escapades (no for spoiler-me ๐Ÿ˜› ), 2. reunions (my big sissy went home after so many years ๐Ÿ˜€ ) and 3. guess what? I’ve finally scaled my second peak for this year! Hooray! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

My love for nature, particularly for mountains has stayed with me ever since the day I first assaulted Mt. Talomo. It was only more than three months but I could no longer hold myself from taking every opportunity to do a trek. (Thanks SAMEC ๐Ÿ˜€ ) Through these people and our mutual love for this hobby, I can continually prove to myself that even a non-athletic type person like me can surviveย treacherous trails and hours of trekking/walking.

I always get the chance to join this trekking through an invitation by my good friend, Milliscent, whose now holding dual-significant position both in SAMEC (President) and UM-CRCYC (Vice-President). I’m just merely a guest in their every expedition. ๐Ÿ˜› And this time, they were having special acceptance activity for their two members.

We started our journey by having an assembly in Ramon Magsaysay Park at supposed-to-be-7:00am-call-time-turned-out-to-9am. This park is famous enough to the locals and travelers as all the bus going to the Northern part and Samal Island will pass here.

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Photo Credit: Joel Gallego Jr.

After finally waiting for others to arrive at around 9 am, we’ve jumped to the bus. It’s only minutes away toย the Sta. Ana Wharf but all the buses had to queue which made our trip a lot longer. There, the queuing itself already tested our patience. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Barge came and we were already aboard. From the port, it took us 30-minute ride going to Penaplata where we had to ride single motor (habal-habal) and buy for any necessities. After few successful negotiations, we made a deal of P40/each at one motor bike carrying 3-4 passengers. In our case, there were four of us passengers (me, Mililscent, Shara, Ace) and one driver, a total of five individuals in one motorbike. What a great ride! โค

Along the way, there were bumpy, zigzags and a number of ascent/descent portions of the road that required extra precaution to the driver and passengers alike. The whole ride was actually a reminiscent of the Canibad Escapade I made with my fellow co-workmates last year. ย However, the road we had passed by was more convenient compared to the road leading to Canibad. Few minutes later and we arrived at Brgy. Guilon, the jump-off area for Mt. Puting Bato.

At around 11:00 am, we started our trek going to the highest peak in the Island Garden City of Samal. The first few minutes of walking already made us exhausted. Lesson: Never go for a trek without feeding yourself! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ That’s so true

At this part, I made a realization to never underestimate any mountains. Haha I learned that the hardest way, though! ๐Ÿ˜€ We continued to walk after barely half an hour of trekking until we reached the grassland up above. Guess what, the view of the mainland instantly save us from feeling a lot of exhaustion. I was glad enough that I was one of my fellow mountain enthusiast to reach this first.

We stopped by at the house and requested the kid to get us buko juice. We paid P10 as an entrance fee and another P15 for each of the coconut.

After refreshing ourselves, we continued to hike the remaining distance to reach the peak. Although this time, tall grasses dominated the whole trail. These grasses were as tall as five feet. Thank God I’m much taller than they were. ๐Ÿ˜›

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Up above, I’d seen an unfinished house facing a great view – a basin-like forest and the sea beyond.

However, such great view can be deceiving too. You’d be passing a cracked soil ย that’s more than 10 feet deep, a cliff at the side and a number of wooden stairs. Being tactful is a must.

We continued once more and we reached a house wherein another P 10 would be collected. Near the house were the cottages for rent and lots and lots of corals rocks! Yes! coral rocks on top of he mountain.

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The white limestone where Puting Bato got its name.

The white limestone where Puting Bato got its name.

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These coral rocks seem to be the living evident that Davao was once found under the water. The remaining trail, however, became less difficult. We’d passed through grasses again up to the last house where another P 10 will be collected.

Along the way, looked what I’d found! โค

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red-orange mushroom

Finally, reaching the peak after more than two-hour trek, almost 1 noon on May 30, 2015.

Of course, reaching the peak was as rewarding as it had always been. We had a great view of the sea and the Davao Oriental. ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ Unfortunately, I never had captured this portion as the battery of my camera went down. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

We ate our lunch at the Puting Bato peak and as guests, we were not allowed to witness their activity so we decided to take a nap. At about 3 pm, we made our descent.

Along the way, something happened that made me realize how vulnerable we were to danger as outdoor enthusiasts. Never ever underestimate the trail no matter how easy it may seem. In our case, I’m fortunate enough to be with responsible mountaineers who would never leave you and would give you the best kind of assistance when needed. The kind of camaraderie and compassion they had for both members and guests would totally leave you in awe. Good job guys!

Anyhow, the remaining hours of our adventure days were spent at the Isla Beach Resort just few meters away from the Samal Port.

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