#Do2016: Climbing up Mt. Puting Bato

When I decided to pursue my bucket list, I knew that the first thing I had to do was climb that damn mountain. Haha! I knew that once I'd be able to accomplish it, it would surely give me that confidence boost and drive to pursue my other goals.

I remember that this summer, Kweshie invited us to go trekking at Mt. Puting Bato in Samal, but we didn't get to go because we lacked time. The trek would only take 30 mins supposedly so it was perfect for a not-so-fit, non-experienced mountaineer like me. I invited some friends to come along, my fellow titas of Davao: Nyka and Che.

We met up at Magsaysay Park at around 8am to catch a bus to Samal. However, we didn't know that the bus doesn't pass there anymore. Instead, it has a terminal in F. Bangoy St. (F. Bangoy okay, cause there is also a C. Bangoy St.) We asked the bus to take us to Penaplata. The regular bus fare to Penaplata is Php 50 and Php 40 for students.

We got off at Penaplata terminal, where the Mang Inasal and Central Warehouse Club was located. There were motorcycles/ habal-habal available. If you're doing the 30-minute trail like we did, ust ask the drivers to take you to the Tayapok trail.

It had just rained then so we bought garbage bags to cover our bags. And then we were off!

Like I said, it had just rained so the roads were wet and since Samal doesn't have a speed limit (well, as far as I know), the driver was driving really fast. Sobrang I feared for my life that time! Roads that just got wet are the most slippery kind and quite hard to maneuver. I was already imagining what'd happen if we slipped or something cause we didn't even have helmets (how very tita of me) until I told myself that I should calm down and just enjoy the ride cause I mean, I was trying to be adventurous here.

I now get why the trail only took 30 minutes--because Tayapok, where the base of the trail is, was really high, like I could feel the change in pressure. Since it had rained, there were some parts that were muddy, and not just ordinarily muddy, but a sticky kind of muddy, cause they were building roads. We had to get off the motorcycle twice cause it couldn't pass.

Finally, we got to the base of the mountain and started our climb. The start of the climb was REALLY STEEP. Like REALLY STEEP I had to stop for breath every 10 steps I think. But it got easier after. Even if it was a relatively easy hike and Davao is generally safe, I was so glad I had Nyka and Che to join me cause it'd be so weird if I hiked alone as I'd originally planned! \Towards the top, there was a cliff where you could see the sea and the islands; it was just so majestic and breathtaking. Pictures don't do it justice. Posing kami ni tita Che siyempre. =))

Shortly after, we reached the gateway to the top. From the gate, it's about 100 steps to the top and you have to pay an entrance of 10php if you get there before 3pm.

 But, it was closed the time we went. :(

So we decided to just have lunch there (we brought our own like the titas we are). It was really nice and peaceful to have lunch 1500-something feet above sea level. You can actually go camping up there too, but I forgot how much you'd have to pay.

our sariling sikap photo taken at the top of the mountain =))

We planned to go to Canibad after we were done, but we wouldn't have enough time to get back before dark if we did so we went to Kaputian instead. There was a free beach there where you can cliff dive like in Canibad. Nyka and Che wanted to try but we ended up soaking in the water and talking like the titas we are instead. 

The only thing we ended up paying for was the bath. You can give wheatever amount you want but we gave around 10php each. Not bad, considering the beach was free.

Total expense for the trip:

  • Bus = Php 100 (round trip)
  • habal-habal = Php 1300 for 2 motorcycles that took us from Penaplata to Tayapok to Kaputian and back to Penaplata, divided by 3 = Php 433.33
  • garbage bag = Php 49/3 = Php 16.67 each
  • bath = Php 10
TOTAL = Php 560/ person (without food and water)

I thought that wasn't bad at all, considering we can normally drop the same amount on dinner and drinks/coffee, which only lasts for a few hours, whereas this lasted a whole day AND we got to exercise and breathe in fresh air. =)

As someone who wants to see the world and travel but says she can't because of money constraints, I realized that you don't have to travel far to discover new places. You'll be surprised that there's a whole other world at your backyard. :)

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