I’ve always described myself as bold and brave, hence, during the time when we were asked to write a one-word description for ourselves in our College yearbook, I wrote “daring” (daring as in brave not the other way around ha!!!). I thought I was right back then. I’ve never been so wrong in my life.
It was two years ago since I last hiked a mountain. I was moving on and trying to escape from my ~broken heart~ so I decided to join a camp for Org leaders back in College. It was not easy but it was fun since there were like 40+ of us who climbed Mt. Malarayat (you can read about it here). I remembered complaining about my aching legs and joints but I also recall laughing and getting all excited and giddy to reach the top. Since then, I promised myself to do it again.
So when the opportunity came, I instantly said yes!
Photo by: Theresa
Mt. Marami which in English translates to many, several or numerous is located in Maragondon, Cavite. It was named as such because of the many rock formations that can be found on this mountain. The summit was a huge chunk of rock and on the other side was the famous “silyang bato” because of its shape.
The professional mountaineers rated this mountain as 3/10 but for someone like me who has below zero experience, the trail was so difficult that I wanted to give up halfway during the ascent. Of course I didn’t, I wanted to prove to myself that I am not a quitter even though my knees were already screaming Chen tama na!
The trail was not easy! Many parts of the trail were slippery, some are steep and most are full of rocks! I’ve never tried rock climbing before and wall climbing was another story. I tried it once but despite having a harness, helmet, ropes and a guide below me to support me, the coward girl that I was gave up. But then, during our hike there were no harnesses nor safety gear to support me. There was just me, my stick and my heavy ass (plus my tiny speck of bravery) to help me reach the summit. Of course I had to do it.
I also didn’t want to be a whiny bitch but I couldn’t help but ask for everyone to wait for me or to pause because I. Cannot. Breathe. Anymore. I know I was the weakest among the group, being the only one who last climbed a mountain two years ago + being the only one who’s idea of exercise is surfing the internet and climbing the steps of MRT up and down every day. It was embarrassing and if I were my groupmates, I would have rolled my eyes at me.
Giddy girl pero susuko na yan!
But hence, I cannot thank them enough for being so understanding. They even cheered for me when I reached the peak! I wanted to scream I AM AT THE PEAK! AYOKO NA GUSTO KO NANG MAKALIMOT! But of course I didn’t, rather I smiled, inhaled and looked around me. I saw the big, beautiful world around me, the breathtaking view of Batangas plus the other mountains that could be seen on top of Mt. Marami such as Pico De Loro and Mt. Batulao. It was so beautiful and so surreal. Once you’re already at the top, all the whines, blisters and complaints fade away (until you descent of course and feel the pain on your huge ass the next day).
I was supposed to sit on the famous silyang bato but my fear of heights got the better of me so I just stood beside it. At least, I made it to the top, it was such a big achievement for me. *Phew*
Stood beside Silyang Bato because ~coward~
The descent was easier until it rained. The trail became slippery and muddy. I didn’t even care about the mud; all I thought of was surviving and going home without being the headline of the news the next day. So after slipping and receiving more blisters, we made it down safely.
Overall, the experience was for keeps! I know this blog post has been too long because of my ~complaints ~ but I’m telling you, you must experience climbing this mountain! The view was majestic plus it’s fulfilling once you finished the difficult hike.
Seeing the vast big world around me has helped me change some of my perspectives in life. After breathing in and thinking “wow, I am so small compared to all of God’s works”, I realized how short life is and how I should make my existence in this world worthwhile and significant (naks, ang deep).
- Wear proper shoes. Don’t wear sandals or running shoes if you want to make this trail easier.
- YOU NEED A GUIDE. WAG MAGMARUNONG! The trek was not easy and the way to the summit is confusing! There were some mountaineers who got lost here so, please, please Get. A. Guide.
- Wear sunblock and any protection from the heat. The way to Mt. Marami is an open trail so, reaching the summit (esp. by 10am – 2pm) becomes really, scorching hot.
- BRING LOTS OF WATER. Unlike Batulao, there are no stores or sources of water. Bring more than what you think is enough.
Also, be nice! The locals and fellow mountaineers were really polite. It’s not so bad to greet them with a smile! Malay mo, nandun na pala ang tadhana mo! Charot!