MT. BINACAYAN : ACCEPT, LET GO & MOVE ON
Why stay at home when you can opt for a spontaneous adventure?
Take a leap of faith and conquer your own fears.
Intriguing isn’t it?
Why does my title have so much feels?
Masyadong ma-hugot? (well, expect this post to have lots of hugot)
Oo naaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Yes besh!!!!!!!
It’s hard to admit but maybe I am.
Emotionally broken + physically tired = ‘Adulting‘ is brutally crushing me alive! My 23 yr. old self is literally begging my 18 yr. old self to take me back in college where everything is as easy as passing my practical examinations.
First step : #ACCEPT the reality
Usually, when someone says I’m heartbroken the first cause that will come to our mind is love related. But in reality, there are so many reasons to get our hearts broken. In my case, negativity in my current life progress made my heart bleed much more than I expected. I actually spent a lot of time thinking how can I escape my present dilemma and sometimes I feel like it’s driving me crazy! Too many what ifs, whys, hesitations and confusions that’s when I decided to just let it be.
Second Step: #LettingGo
Different from my source of heart break, my college best friend/hiking buddy for this adventure just got out from a 6 years long relationship. Like OMG!!!!!!! Totoooooo baaaaa!!!!!!!!Nakakahinayang noh?!Di biro ang anim na taon! But offcourse, everything happens for a reason.
And to you my dear readers, whatever type of heartbreak you are dealing with right now . Gaano man kabigat o kagaan yan, ang masasabi ko lang sa ngayon ay kapit ka lang, classic toh pero…….
Third Step: #MovingOn
Since it’s her first time to, I chose a mountain that is considered as an easy one. Let’s just say….. I was absolutely wrong by thinking that it’s a chill hike haha forgive me beshy! The trail was actually haaaaaaaaaarder than expected!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sabi na eh, wag agad agad naniniwala.
Mt. Binacayan (424 MASL) is located in Montalban Rizal and is considered one of the favorite hiking spot in the Rizal because it is known for its view of a Sea Of Clouds (SOC ) from peak 1 up to the summit. But just like our wishes, it’s a matter of luck to witness it. So better pray hard days before your climb for its appearance but never assume that there will be! ‘Wag kang umasa at wag kang mag-assume masasaktan ka lang’.
Location: Brgy. Wawa, Montalban Rizal Philippines
Why Choose Mt. Binacayan?
- View it offers: Sierra Madre Mountain Ranges, overview of the beauty of metro, The Rockies
- Side trips/ Activities: Wawa Dam
- Probable: Sea of Clouds
- Affordability: estimated 350 per head
- Proximity from the Metro: 2 hours
How to get there?
–Via private transporation:
- Waze can bring you until Barangay Wawa which is the drop-off location.
- There is an area for parking that is free of charge
- Leave early: If you’ll be coming from Metro Manila I advise for you to leave at 2 AM, so you can start your climb at 4:15 AM just in time to witness sunrise at the summit.
-Via Public Transportation:
From Cubao Farmers Market:
-Ride a Jeepney /Fx bound to Eastwood. Fare: 50/each if FX/ UV Express ; 25/ each if jeepney. Travel time: 60 minutes.
-Ride a tricycle/jeep bound to the Barangay Hall of Wawa. Fare: 60/trip if tricycle special; 10/each if jeepney. Travel time: 10 minutes.
- I prefer to ride a tricycle to the barangay hall because if you will ride the jeepney, you need to wait for it be full which will most probably take forever! Hahaha
What to bring:
- At least 1 Liter of water
- Hand Gloves. Also available in the Barangay Hall for 40/each.
- Small towel
- Mosquito Repellant
- Trail food. Example: Jelly Ace, chocolate bars, bubble gum etc etc
- Extra clothes
- Rain Coat
What to wear:
-Dry-fit shirt/rash guard
*Applicable for females: for your IG gaming, wear a nice sports bra inside. Trust me you’ll be needing it!
*I prefer wearing leggings because it will protect you from the sharp grasses and rock edges.
-Hiking shoes/ Rubber Shoes/ Hiking Sandals
*I prefer wearing Hiking Sandals because it’s very easy to clean after and also it’s very lightweight.
-Strictly follow the Leave No Trail Principles!
-Respect the beauty of nature and be responsible enough to take care of your own waste.
-Climb with precaution, fall at your own risk. This also applies to life!
Upon arrival at the DENR office we first registered and paid a fee of 50 Pesos each person, then our hiking guide was assigned to us. We started our activity with a short prayer to ask for guidance, followed by a fast warm up. It is very important to stretch your body and do simple warm ups before your climb to help it adjust to the activities ahead.
LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!
At around 5:30 AM, we started climbing a cemented stair-like trail which lasted for around 10 minutes followed by a long concrete road. During the hike you will be meeting different people, just don’t forget to greet your fellow hikers. It’s part of the climbing etiquette to always greet people and wish them good luck on their climb. Although the area is cemented, my legs were already aching at this point but definitely not as painful as my current heartache hahaha! #pushthehugot I also had difficulty of breathing in the first minutes of our hike, my lungs is such a weakling!
The trail here is very well defined but there are a lot of points where a confusing turn to either left or right needs to be made. That’s why a guide is always is strictly needed! A few year ago, a group of teenagers violated this rule and climbed on their own. Guess what? They got lost and took almost the whole day to go down without even reaching the summit, they might have took the wrong turns. The initial trail composed mostly of agricultural terrain with a few big rock formations. Since it rained the night before our climb, it took us an hour and a half to reach the resting spot because of the muddy trail.
The Nipa Resting Spot
There are plenty of nipa hut in this area where one can rest for free. This is the perfect spot to relax before the start of assault to first peak. A sari-sari store which is open during weekends is located here if ever you don’t have your own trail food and you already consumed your water. Matutong magpahinga kung pagod ka na. There is also fresh fruit shakes available and my favorite flavor can be bought for just 40 pesos!!!! AVOCADO SHAKE!!!!!! YAAAAAY!!!!!
The kind of trail starting here is moderately difficult consisting of big and small rough limestone formations where at some point you need to scramble your way up because of the almost 90 degree rock elevation. That’s why putting on hand gloves is very important to prevent yourself from sharp rock injuries. And finally we reached our first peak, also known as ‘The Rockies’ !!!!!!!
Rockies/ First Peak
We continued our way to the second peak where the famous heart stopping shot is being taken at. The trail going there had the same difficulty as earlier with additional thick bamboo forest before reaching the peak.
I know it’s nice to have these heart stopping Instagram worthy shots but remember to always put your safety first. Listen to your guide when they give guidelines on where to go and not to go. One wrong move and you might fall so be EXTRAAAAAA careful! Alam mo naman, mahirap ma-fall lalo kung walang sasalo sayo. Kaya sabi ko nga fall at your own risk, mauna talo.
We are just 20 mins away from the summit and my adrenaline already shooted up at its peak. I am too excited to set my foot on the top and stare at the beautiful view nature has to offer to me at the summit!!!!
Also, this last few minutes was definitely the hardest! I may have underestimated the difficulty level of Mt. Binacayan, the trail requires a lot of arm work! The rock formations are far from each other and at some parts you really need a companion to pull you up to reach the other rock. #Thestruggleisreal That’s the reason why hiking with friends is better than hiking alone. Wag tayong loner ha! Hindi ko rin naman sinabing humanap ng someone special, kung true friend ang kasama mo mas masaya mag-travel diba?! Friendship goals over relationship goals tayo lagi! #MovingOn
The summit have two points where you can take your ‘I Conquered this mountain’ photos.
The first part is much easier, to reach the area you just need to climb a big rock formation.
The second one is the more challenging part , wherein you’re required to cross two big rock formations which have a big gap from each other making you fearlessly jump to the other side. And walk in a thin line rock to reach a bigger one that you also need to wall climb without any gear . The struggle is real but definitely worth it!!!!
During weekends, you are only allowed to stay for 5 minutes in the summit because of the large mass of people waiting to take their turn for photo ops. Since I went here in a weekday, the summit is all mine! Kasi sino ba namana nag gustong may kaagaw diba?!
We stayed at the summit for almost an hour to rest and eat our trail foods! Loving this combo send to me for this adventure ! Snacking out without guilt ! California Crunch and Sola Iced Tea can is available at all branches of 711 nationwide, Landmark, Unimart, Cash and Carry , Makati Supermarket All Day and Robinsons Supermarket in Metro Manila.
We started our descend at around 10 AM and reached the Wawa Dam at around 11:30 AM. It took us only 1 ½ hour to go down, so we decided to stay at Wawa Dam for a while to rest and freshen up. There is no entrance fee required to visit this place, you just need to rent your own cottage if you need one. You can also buy your lunch in the area, we got ours for just 80 pesos each a set meal of rice +soup +vegetable +meat. That’s very sulit (Affordable) and delicious too!!!!
This adventure is a proof that hiking makes us move on from our heartaches left in the city. Take this time to heal yourself, so that when you go down in the city you’re a new person with a heart full of positivism. Remember, heartaches no matter what kind it is will heal through time but helping it heal faster won’t hurt anyway so why not?
Difficulty wise, I will rate this climb as moderately difficult. Even if it is considered as a minor climb the trail is still challenging most specially for beginners.
Have your own travel hugot lines? Comment it here! I love hugot lines forever! Oops, walang forever! hahaha
Stay tuned for my next #OffDutyHikingDiaries
Hope it inspired you to make your own adventure!
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Let’s stay connected loves!
Related Blog Post : http://thenurseoffduty.com/mt-hapunang-banoi-an-eagles-sanctuary/
Joan Tapiz Maniago
THE NURSE OFF DUTY