On an average we are trekking about 3-5 hours for minor fun climb. For major climb it would take us about 8-15 hours during the first day and with these long hours along the trail under the scorching heat of sun, covered trail, pine forest and grassy land you will always have these phrases spoken by you or over heard from other hikers. There are even times that you would just stay and sleep along the trail esp. if away from Metro due to long travel time, sleepless night due to excitement…but then we always manage to pose and smile for pictures and that makes our hiking experience even more meaningful and enjoyable and having a memory captured by our lens and soon will be remembered when the time we are no longer able to hike and trek.
Have you somehow heard or spoken these phrases during your hike?
- All about Distance: Kuya malapit na ba? (Are we near yet?) Malayo pa ba? Ilang oras pa?
The time that we have almost used our energy trying to convince ourselves that we are almost there, praying and hoping that just a few steps and we are finally there. But most of the time we are disappointed, why? Because 30 mins or even a kilometer with our local guides are understated. I mean it’s not true – 30 minutes for them is an hour for us. A kilometer for them is 3 kilometers. Better yet focus on trekking and look at the beauty of the trails…don’t ask you might just get disappointed.
- Beauty and Lens: Wow and ganda, hoy picturan mo ako ditto..
When everyone holds on their camera and phones and panicking what pose to take or who would go first, or better yet take selfie after all everyone is busy. The time that they almost forget the tiredness and pain during the climb. Yes – that is the reward of hiking – seeing the world above, seeing life at different perspective. Seeing your friends enjoying the view and thanking Him for a beauty he created for us.
- All about the weather. Ang init grabe! Hala ang lamig na. Parang uulan na..walang clearing
We always look at the weather bulletin a week before and on the actual climb. Being responsible organizer you should know the latest update for the safety of your team. So you can’t get away from these phrases, during travel to jump off, during the climb you will always hear these. Buses like Victory Liner, Partas have strong AC so we always advise the team to bring jacket and malong inside the cabin. As we trek one factor that exhausts us is the heat from the sun, if we are trekking at 9am onwards on open trails that would really cause and use lot of energy we have and of course would consume more water. But then when 1pm comes esp. in Benguet Mountains will give us foggy and wintry weather. Good thing about mountains in Cordilleras are covered by pine forest and the chilly weather helps us to ease the trekking. One of the reasons why I love Cordilleras is the cold weather but I’m afraid if during the trek it will rain because can’t stay too much on cold and wet while trekking
- Taking Rest: Ui take 5 muna, pagod na ako wait lang. Penge namn ng trail food mo.
Sometimes taking too much rest is not good – 5 is enough to refuel, re-energize and have that toes and feet rest for a while..but then if the area is so good to just ignore – sometime it would even take us 30 minutes because of picture taking. These phrases are usually heard or spoken when we always can’t move – we need to take 5 and refuel. And during the rest we refuel and reenergize by taking water or some trail food. We always have that friend without food – hahaha so would always ask can I have some of those? And moment like hay pagod na ako…you would alos hear again those phrases in number one? Malayo pa ba tayo? Ung totoo?
- Type of trails: Assualt bayan derecho or may patag? Wala bang patag? Pataas ulit Kuya? Naku pababa nanaman, sakit sa tuhod. Sana naglagay na lang ng tulay, wala bang zip line?
Funny! We always ask too much questions with our guides. I would love a pine forest trail over a mossy one – for pine forest I have a clear view of the surroundings unlike the Purgatory mossy forest ohh that was really so long 3 hours of trekking from covered trail..and it was scary comes night time.. I hate trail which is paved – Purgatory has that paved trail na pababa ohhh so tiring – no stopper.
- Ang bigat ng Bag ko – papaporter na nga.
Learn to pack light – I’m guilty I bring things which are not essential but now I’m learning. Before climb check with your guide or organizer if water source is available – that is huge less to your load. Bring only light materials – check light tent, light sleeping bags and etc. Do not bring the whole bottle of Oil or Fish Sauce – instead you can use refillable bottle or other plastic container. Just bring just enough for the event. Do not bring the whole soap – I usually bring sachet toiletries for easy packing and light weight. Use dry fit clothing instead of maong or cotton..
- Ang Sarap sana pag may Halo- Halo or Coke.
The moment that we are always thinking the comfort we have at home during weekend – drive to mall and have movie or dinner. Coke with ice or halo halo..we always carve for those in the mountains. Things that we usually take for granted in the city and realize how good, how delicious they are if we are in wilderness. Everything is just so good during climb. An ordinary friend chicken is heaven, an ordinary sardines is so good. In Benguet Soda are chilled without putting them in fridge.
- Good Morning Ma’am Sir! Ingat po! Hello Ma’am, Sir! Pa Advance po.
A very important I think that now at this modern age is no longer being observed. During the year of 90’s early 2000’s we were trained to greet people along the trail it is a sign of true blooded mountaineer- giving courtesy and respect to people in wilderness.
- Saan tayo after? We always look forward for another event or side trip. Getting tired cannot stop us from hiking.
Have you heard those during your hike? Well, we may sometimes cry over the pain and tiring treks we always have this moment of Victory, moment when we have taken the best pose in our photos, moment we have seen the world above, moment that we have conquered another peak in our lifetime. Because today is the right moment to climb, to hike we are not getting younger – Today is the right time to travel. Today is the right time to know youself , see the other angle of life and change the perspective on how we view life. Hiking brings us closer to ourselves, to our loved ones and helped us better understand our passion, our needs and purpose in life.