I was like browsing one of my old files and got caught up on one Word Document file entitled Pico Blog and hurriedly opened it and I was expecting it was mine but to my surprise it was from a LOST Friend and her name is Lilibeth Baroro. You will know why we are called LOST later on this blog. Before posting this blog, I asked for her permission first and she said it’s okay and it was her pleasure so I was like very thankful so I said I will take recognize her as a contributor.
The story that she is about to tell are true stories of our adventure. Please take note that this is memorable to me because this is the first time that I actually met the founder and original members of the team and my way of becoming one of them. Where I get addicted to joining them to become a tribesman wannabe, a hiker, an explorer and mountaineer. I blogged already before that the members are from different companies the title was LOST Climbing More Fun In The Philippines and it was like our entry for DOT’s Tourism Campaign and new slogan “#ItsMoreFunInThePhilippines”
I will not prolong my introduction anymore and I hope you will like reading Beth’s story about our success in traversing Mt. Pico de Loro with a foreigner friend Cees Versteeg. Beth started with
A couple of weeks ago, I’ve invited my mountaineering friends called “LOST” or League of Summiteers and Trailblazers to have an out of the ordinary climb at MT. Pico for my special guest Cees Versteeg. To give you a little background about the team, it is called “LOST”, literally means, “GOT LOST.” The idea sprang out because one member of the team always gets lost every time the team has expeditions. For that reason, we called our group LOST. The original meaning of LOST is “Lakbay Outdoor Sosyalerang Trekker.” It was bestowed upon when we climbed Mt. Daguldol last May 2, 2010 by our member who always gets lost. However, some of the members didn’t agree with the meaning of the ellipsis thus, after soliciting the ideas of everyone, we came up with “League of Summiteers and Trailblazers”. The group will be having its 1st anniversary this coming September.
The group decided to have a Traverse Climb in Mt. Pico. The goal is to let Cees experience our mountaineering adventure and share with him our trademark, which is to always take the traverse climb and explore the beauty of nature . Traverse Climb means not going back to the original trail. What we do is that we take other trail going down the mountain, adding excitement to the experience. I told Cees before the climb to expect more adventure on the 2nd day because we don’t know the trail going down to Nasugbo Batangas. In addition, I also told him that if we can’t find the trail going down we will be the one to make a new trail. Hmmmm… It sounds exciting right?
Day 1: July 3, 2010
At around 4am, I woke up to take a bath and fix my things. I then took a cab going to Edsa Shangrila Hotel to fetch Cees. By 5:30, we were already on our way to Jollibee Farmers Cubao via MRT Train. It was the first time Cees rode the MRT Train and while waiting for the train, he was trying to take photos but the security guard on duty called his attention and told him that taking photos inside the train station is prohibited. Cees listened to the guard but when we were already having on board the train, he took photos again. Hehehe… I told him then that it was okay because the security guard won’t see him… We arrive in our meeting place at exactly 6am, after a few minutes some of the members of LOST arrived. We ate breakfast for a while and rode a cab going to Baclaran where some of the members were waiting for us already. The group had decided that it would be easier or more convenient to rent a mini bus to take us in the jump off.
Along the way, we had our stop over at a small restaurant we call “Carenderia” to buy food for lunch and to wait for the participants coming from Laguna. When they arrive, I introduce them to Cees. They took their breakfast and while waiting for the others to finish eating, we decided to go to the market to buy food and some other necessities for our dinner. Cees went along and we rode a tricycle. We showed Cees what “Tahong” is and we bought some for Cees. After securing all the things we need, we started our trip going to the Jump Off.
Just to share a few facts about Mt. Pico De Loro, it is Located in both Cavite (North of Manila) and Batangas (South of Manila). Its elevation is around 664 meters above sea level. It is accessible from Ternate Cavite, or Nasugbo Batangas.
The first 30-40 minutes was quite easy, you just have to follow a path up through the foliage away from the road….By then, the sounds of the tricycle and Jeepney slowly fades away.
We finally arrived at the jump off and fix our things, distribute the load and pray before start of the trek. We had Cees lead the prayer. After the prayer, we then divided our group into three. Cees and I led the team going to the Nipa Hut with Paolo, Carol, Eman, Henry and Nestor most of which are my colleagues in Sunpower. The other group stayed in the middle and the last group became our sweeper.
The rain started to pour upon our arrival at Nipa Hut. I was a bit uneasy because the water will make the trail slippery. While there, we met 2 groups of mountaineers in the Nipa Hut registration including the youngest mountaineer. Cees saw a lot of chicken and kiddingly told me to get some for our “Avond Eten,” but I told him that won’t be possible because the owner knows the headcount of the chicken and they will get angry if we will get some.
After we took our lunch, we did the registration again for the local; we started our trek going to the Base Camp at exactly 13:30. Part of the trail brought us pass some private properties. At first we weren’t sure if we were on the right path but eventually we found signs pointing us to the right direction.
Due to heavy rain we forgot to pass by the water falls were Cess planned to take a bath. I’ve told him that part of a mountaineer’s life is getting wet and wild!!! But the Last group had a chance to go in the waterfalls and get some guavas. Cees were able to try it.
While trekking a downward path, Cees Slipped once but he stood up just as fashence, I missed to take the photo of it. After hours, we finally got to the Base camp and luckily, the rain already stopped. Finally, we got to enjoy the beauty of nature. In addition, we also took a lot of photographs. I pointed the cluster of stone to Cees and told him that would be our destination. He replied, a bit overwhelmed, “Are you crazy?” To which I replied, “Not really…”
By the time we reach the campsite, my nervousness was beginning to take a toll on me because Cees wanted to try everything, such as taking photos in rocks. I can’t count how many times I told him to be careful. After we set our tents, Cees offered Drops, sour met and Stroop Wafel to the team. Following Dinner, we immediately proceeded to “The Socials.” This is when we introduce ourselves to our guests and vice versa while drinking vodka. When it was Cees’ turn to introduce himself, the time drag for about 30 minutes or so… They asked a lot of questions but it was evident that Cees enjoyed the socials so much.
Almost everyone woke up before sunrise to take pictures of dawn, after which; we started our trek going to the summit. At first I’ve told Cees to stay and wait for us but Carol insisted that he comes and experience the trek with us. Thus, I ask Cees if he wants to come with us and without any hesitation and fear, he was ready to go. Carol and I assisted him. I was nervous and scared because it was very difficult to climb the summit and as a consequence, we all had to use ropes. Carol and I watch him and I keep on saying “BE CAREFUL Cees”. (I can’t count how many time I told him Be Careful.)