Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mt. Makiling Traverse - A Cosplay Climb

The majestic Mt. Makiling from a distance

Since the day I experienced the challenging trail of Mt.Arayat traverse, I was looking forward in conquering its southern counterpart Mt. Makiling. At long last on September 24-25, I successfully traversed Mt. Makiling!

The Mountain

Sto. Tomas, Batangas
Jump-off: Brgy. San Miguel, Sto. Tomas
LLA: 14.13°N 121.20°E, 1090 MASL (Peak 2)
Hours to Peak 2 / days required: 1-2 days / 7-8 hours
Specs: Major climb, Difficulty 6/9, Trail class 3 with roped segments

The Climb

The cosplay trekkers from left (back row) - Jim, Jelo, Jeff, Missy
from left (front row) - Alvin, Joy, Mcdo, Bugs, Jojo, Connie
Everything and everyone were all set. Twelve people tried to day hike Mt. Makiling. Among the twelve mountaineers, only one has climbed Makiling and that was several years ago. However, since we failed to find someone who can guide us through the mountain, we willingly placed our faith to our friend Jeff Aligato.

We started trekking at 11AM taking the trail on the south face of the mountain from Sto. Tomas, Batangas. After a roughly 20 minutes dirt road walk, came the assault. Yeah, early assault! We were not ready for it but oh well turning back is not an option. As we advanced, the trail changes. We passed through a private land, cruised on the obscure areas of tall and thick cogon grasses, crawled up and down the ravines, dragged ourselves on the challenging rope segments, slid and glided on muddy slopes, lingered on mossy and creepy forest, and heaven knows what else. And we did all these exhibitions while trying to avoid “limatiks” or the stick-like blood sucking leeches!

We took our lunch quarter before 12noon and continued trekking. And trekking… And trekking… We got lost along the way but we found our way back, which of course was great! We kept on trekking until we realized that it's already 7PM so we decided to stop by a group of mountaineers camping at peak 2 and took our dinner. It was just for a brief moment then we were all back trekking down the trail; most of us exhausted. We can camp, but we cannot; simply because - we have no tent, nor cook set, nor burner, nor enough water. This climb was supposedly a day hike, so it means light packing. Again, we did not have enough option but continue.

Alas! We reached another dirt road, we’re almost done. Or so we thought. Because after surviving the challenges of the cogon grasses, forests, ravines, rope segments, muddy slopes and limatiks, our patience were tested by a very long walk in a rocky and uneven road. We still pursued because we did not have a choice. We were all exhausted so we opted not to talk anymore to anyone. Tiredness had enveloped our being.

And exactly at 11PM we touched UPLB base. In the end we all can say, we can proudly say that we successfully traversed Mt. Makiling for 12 hours! 'Twas one great weekend of adventure!

The Highlights

A.) Cosplay! 

Remember our Mt. Tarak climb "Climbing with Attitude"? When we had our party at the summit wearing dress, coats, and ties? Putting a twist to something already fun like mountaineering is double happiness. Exciting. Euphoric. Let the pictures below speak for us…

B.) Sight!  

The trail can be difficult but the sight is priceless. The flora and fauna, everything are magnificent. Beautiful. Splendid!

C.) Pool Party! 

What else is a better reward after a long tiring day? Hot bath in a private pool. Cold and comfy room. Good friends to share good times with. We enjoyed the drinks, we got drunk, we sang our hearts out, we partied at a private resort in Pansol...

until we dropped...

Key Notes:

·         There is no established guide service that exists in the area. Registration at the Brgy. Hall jump-off is P20 per head.
·         I don’t know why most mountaineers say that camping is not advisable because of the limited camping space that the mountain offers. Although it is right that the common camping area is just a little surface that can accommodate 4-5 tents, Mt. Makiling has several open spaces, which I think are good spots for camping. Although personally I would rather not camp on the said mountain because of the leeches. The camping site has countless limatiks crawling around! Although the limatik count in Mt.Pantingan is still more awful.
·         If you will day hike Mt. Makiling, start as early as possible so you could ride the habal-habal (motorcycle) instead of enduring the painstaking walk in a rocky road on your way down to UPLB.
·         There are a lot of private resorts in Pansol Laguna where you can have fun after a tiring and challenging Makiling climb.
·         Check Pinoy Mountaineer’s site for more detailed information. Mountain specs used in this blog was lifted from the said site.

Check out tamanggala official facebook page for more photos.
Photo Credits: Jelo Dayag, Cristy Hapal, Bugs Ynub, Joy Manimtim and Jim Bryan Ilarde


  1. Nakakaaliw naman po. Climbing with a twist!

  2. sama ka minsan! San ka this weekend? It will be an honor to travel with another blogger ;)

  3. ngek! kundi pako naghanap ng magagalaan this coming weekend hindi ko mababasa ang response mo Pendulum. Balak ko sanang solohin ang MakTrav.. tatakbuhin ko na ito para hindi abutan ng dilim. (kunsakaling matuloy ng solo). Ok din ang Pansol sidetrip.

  4. haha! Dee, tara sama ka! Beach Christmas Party ng outdoor org ko Dec 17-18. Tara? :D


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