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Mt. Pico de Loro with Team Pagong Mountaineers

Mt. Pico de Loro
Mt. Pico de Loro or Mt. Palay-Palay is situated in the Province of Cavite. This mountain features a simple trail, with 3/9 difficulty; so it is really perfect for first timers. Another richness that this mountain has is the Parrots Peak or others call it Monolith (read the info below.) The refreshing waterfalls can also be found along the trail going to the summit.

This time, my schedule was really hectic because of my chosen path which is showbiz, but I am not putting a limit and enjoy life. Because of social networking sites, I found new friends; friends who love nature and adventure like me. Actually for this weekend I received two invites: first was from my long facebook friend, Drew, to climb Mt. Pico de Loro in Cavite. I already reached the summit of this mountain in 2012 with my group, Batang Hamog Mountaineers. Second invite was from my blogger friends for Borawan Island escapade. But, I chose Pico de Loro because I need to have an exercise since my last climb was at Mt. Romelo on September 14, 2013.

Coastal Mall Terminal

Bus station going to Ternate/Maragondon can be found in the Provincial Transport Terminal located in Coastal Mall, Paranaque. It was my first to visit this terminal after it was opened to the public a month ago. There were still parts of the terminal which are under construction. But, I think everything works fine here. Bus fare was 81 pesos going to Maragondon for an hour travel time.

Jetti Gas Station
From Jetti Gas Station (located along the highway), we chartered a jeepney going to DENR.

Team Pagong
Here's the bag tag! I really love meeting other mountaineers from different groups. Please meet my new found friend from Team Pagong Mountaineers. They sound familiar, but I don't know if I already meet them in the past, but they were so kind and cool. According to them, the name of their group came from the turtle's behavior which is being SLOW like their pacing. Sorry, I forgot to visit my nail artist.

Best Meryenda Kakanin
Before proceeding to DENR for registration, along the way, we bought pork for our dinner. Since I am starving, I bought 5 pieces suman for only 20 pesos. Sir Mimon had a simple joke before getting off the jeep. Question: Anung gagawin natin sa BABOY? Sir Mimon" E dey aasarin natin!" then he starred outside. and I was no comment that time, although I got his joke, but still I was thinking because if I comment on that, I might offend someone which is bad. He was pertaining to those chubby girls in the group, hahaha. 9:30AM we reached DENR for registration. Registration Fee: 25 pesos.

Mt. Pico de Loro
Another registration, another 20 pesos fee. We had our lunch in the cottage located here. It's the part one of our socials. I am not only the first timer to meet Team Pagong, so we have much time to know all the participants. We also met the other groups here since it is the last water source (clean.)

Mt. Pico de Loro trail
The trail going to the summit of Mt. Pico de Loro is a simple one (dry season) and a challenging one (wet season.) The trail isn't that complicated unlike the others; no blood suckers and other kadiri creatures.

Mt. Pico de Loro waterfalls
Along the trail, you'll notice the mark going to the water falls. From this mark, it's a 15-minute walk to reach the exact spot of the falls.

Mt. Pico de Loro water falls
One of the features of Mt. Pico de Loro will be the refreshing water falls. It's an hour walk from Camp 1. We met the other groups and another two foreigners.

Mt. Pico de Loro water falls
Please meet my TravellingCup, having a perfect pose with the water falls at the background.

We stayed here for more than an hour, then ascended. The trail in this part is also simple, anyone can enjoy the cool ambiance since it is covered with trees. I enjoyed walking on the dry trail, so I can definitely suggest to climb dry season, but still wet season can add a great experience.

After less than two hours, we finally reached the assault part which means we're few meters to the summit. After the assault part will be Kawayanan, just few minutes from the camp site. As what you can see, the trail is covered with bamboo and the I got goose bumps because of the sound of the bamboos.

Another thing I noticed was this large cut wood. No idea if who's the person involved in cutting, but I am hopping that it's legal and the local government is aware of this activity. A friend of mine mentioned it to me few days after it was cut; and as a nature lover, I can't accept wood cutting, especially in the mountains like Mt. Pico de Loro.

Year ago, there was no store in the camp site, but few weeks ago, it was opened. Selling bottled water, cold soda and other grocery items for a gold price. Mountain Dew: 35 pesos, 6L Water: 60 pesos (not the distilled one) Ma'am Bliss, thanks for the treat!

Mt. Pico de Loro
Here's the camp site, we occupied the space near the store (in the photo: Ma'am Elle and Prince.) Before dawn, there were still some open space for campers, but as the night went by, a lot of campers were still arriving.

Before dawn, we started cooking our dinner, I mean they cooked our dinner and I was just starring to them. hahaha, I was a special guest that night. 7:45PM we took our diner! and some of our participants took a rest after our dinner, while we're having socials. We met new friends from different groups; had a great party, had a great conversation with them. And of course, as usual, there were people linked to me. hahaha! I am so kilig that night! Something happened, but in general everything was a success! and I was drunk again! Word of the night: Lell...... with tongue in outright position.

monolith
I was sleeping for only two hours, so I decided not to proceed to the monolith since I already visited it before and I took a rest at the camp site instead. Just to give you the history: it was the Spaniards who discovered the form of a giant rock perched in the mountainous part of Cavite, so they call it Pico de Loro or Parrot's Peak. While they were on the summit, I packed my stuff in my backpack, ate breakfast and drunk soda to refresh myself.

When the others arrived at the camp site, they packed their stuff and left that site with prayers. Descending this mountain was a challenge because my feeling wasn't that good. So, I was the sweeper this time. The whole journey in descending this mountain was faster than ascending.

We met at the camp one then regrouped. This time, I tried to do a solo walk in faster pace since I am already familiar with the trail and the marks and ribbons are also visible. There were batch in our group who first left camp one, this time something happened. After camp one, there are two trails: 1. straight (going to Ternate) and 2. turn left (going to DENR) I noticed the pink ribbon tied on the branch, then GOING TO DENR mark on the bark of the trail. Instead of selecting the turn left, they selected the straight one, so in short THEY WERE LOST.

The trail was kinda surprising because of some parts that were confusing. I followed the marks and yellow paint on the trees so I was the fourth one reached the registration area. I was expecting that I will be in the 8th position but its not. There were four people who were missing. We talked about it and waited for the others. When the sweeper arrived and that four people were still missing, we decided to do a backtrack going to camp one. Since there were people ascending, we tried asking them, gave them descriptions but it was negative.

Another group arrived, we did the same. The descriptions were positive, so we proceeded to do a  backtrack. Just few minutes away, we easily noticed our friends. I heard someone was shouting, and as expected it was Ma'am Betthh who was noisy and still happy. We gave them water for refreshments. They were four and one was still missing and that was Ma'am Bliss. According to them, she proceeded to the trail going to Ternate and that trail is within two hours.

According to our survivors, there were some other group who were also lost in the same trail. So everything was fine. When we reached the highway, we were having our conversation when we saw this girl on a motorcycle and it was Ma'am Bliss. Since everything was fine, we proceeded to the registration area.

As expected, when we met the other participants, the same thing happened, there were people shouting and someone cried, hahaha. We finally met Ma'am Bliss and according to her: " may mga locals siyang nameet, tapos may nakita rin syang isang lalaking may edad at isang bata. Pinasakay daw siya sa isang kabayo at napahulod daw ang kabayo dahil sa bigat nya. hahaha (just kidding.) Her mind that time was playing a scene of the horror movie Wrong Turn.

Marine Headquarters
Second Day at 4:15PM: after the adventure at Mt. Pico de Loro, we visited Marines Headquarter. The beach here has fine white sand with cottages, souvenir shops, videoke, and a shower area. This headquarter is open for the public until 12 midnight. Entrance Fee: 100 pesos per head, proof of identification is needed. There were parts which picture taking is NOT allowed, but if you're by the beach, you're free to take photos. Our adventure was remarkable and was really great! You can also visit our previous adventure here: Mt. Pico de Loro.

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