Scaled (700+ MASL) Mt Mago With a Toddler | The Boundary Climb

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The Boundary Climb.

One gloomy Saturday, together with our good friend Niña, we decided to do the boundary climb to Mount Mago in Carmen, Cebu. Because of the last-minute decision, I asked my sister’s husband who happens to live in Carmen, to take us to the jump-off point.

We were already in their house when he told us that no one could look after my niece, Ahkirah. Without hesitation, I said we’re going to take her with us. And off we go!

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The motorcycle ride.

We never expected an hour butt-aching ride to the jump off point. The road was slippery because of the other night’s rain and fog.

When we passed by Durano Eco Farm and the Lhuiller’s Farm, the temperature dropped lower than expected which meant we were already in a higher altitude. We saw a lot of pine trees and vegetation that only grow in cold places, too.

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After we passed by the Lhuiller’s Ranch, we had a quick stop over at an intersecting road separated by a perfect muffin-like hill. While waiting to ease the pain on our behind due to that painstaking ride, Niña and I agreed to climb the little hill with Ahkirah.

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Free!

And oh, I don’t know how to describe how we felt but we wished to just stay at the top and end our jaunt there because it was just AMAZING!

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Soaring high!

The top of the hill is denuded perhaps because of the recent dry season. The soil was red, like really red. While we were on top, we called Ace and Dan-Dan to climb and see it. We felt like we were already on the top of the world. The colors around were so rich and fulfilling to the eye. I, personally, admired how the colors green, blue, red and white complimented each other.

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We arrived at Barangay Santican which is the jump off point of the trek. The person who was assigned to list our names for registration was not around, instead, we were given two young lads to guide us to the boundary.

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We immediately started our hike after Ahkirah devoured one hanging rice. We walked through a fully established trail but it was muddy because of the rain on the previous night. Ahkirah, on the other hand, walked for few minutes and asked to be carried because it was muddy and she was having a hard time walking. We took turns in carrying her. And when she has rested her feet enough, she also asked to be put down and walk by herself. Now, I see a future adventurer in her.

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Hindi pa ako pagod, bes. Siya lang naman napagod eh.

Few meter from the jump-off point, we passed by a couple of houses and eventually, grassy slopes.  Although it was cloudy, I thought the weather was with us because it was not hot.

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We had to stop for short breaks to regain energy. Actually, the hike was not very draining because the trail was pretty established and the hills are not too high.

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The only problem we had, I guess, was the amorseco grass that clings to Niña’s and Ahkirah’s pants and shorts. Ahkira complained that it was itchy so we had to make a few stops to remove some of them so she can walk with ease.

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Buti pa ang amorseco, clingy at nag stay.

But those clingy grass did not make our trek less enjoyable. We were rewarded with a wonderful sight of the grassy slopes, green with envy.

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Look at that wonderful verdure! Made me want to stay here and paint.

After almost two hours of trekking through valleys and plains, we finally arrived at the boundary sign. Imagine being in three towns at the same time?

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I feel awesome~~~!!!

I couldn’t forget Ahkirah’s face when I told her she did it! She was very happy and ecstatic as she ran towards me in the boundary sign with her dad following her.

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Yes! You did it, baby!!!

I bet her dad was very proud because I am. Considering her age and her inexperience, surviving that two-hour journey was indeed a BIG accomplishment for a two-year old kid.

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Congratulations, Kida!!! Tita is very proud of you.

After feeding our eyes and souls with the refreshing sight around, we ate our lunch to replenish our tummies. After a while, the clouds above us became darker. As much as we wanted to stay longer, we couldn’t risk soaking in the rain with Ahkirah.

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But as we started to descend, the wind seemed to have blown the clouds away. 😀 Which was a really good thing, so we didn’t have to hurry home.

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We were given a good chance to bask in nature and take photos to remind us of the beauty of the place. Ahkirah had a great time running in the field while we were happily watching.

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You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is calling… so, get on your way!

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Ahkirah at Mt Mago.

When we arrived at the basketball court where we left our motorcycles, the rain started pouring heavily, as if heaven waited for us to find shelter. While waiting for the rain to stop, we had fun watching some kids feeding bananas to a little monkey in a sari-sari store across the basketball court.

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As soon as the pouring stopped, we headed home feeling contented and happy with our experience.

Just when we thought our jaunt had enough surprises…

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Sea of clouds!!!

As we passed by the red hill where we stopped on our way to the jump-off point, a sea of clouds showed up to complete our AWESOME experience.

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Drifting away.

We were so amazed by the sight of it. Words of amazement and gratefulness were all we uttered. We stared at it until it started drifting away before we realized to take a photo.

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Sea of clouds bidding goodbye!

Although we were unable to take a photo of clouds floating near us because we were very consumed by the sight, the picture of it is painted in our memory and that’s what matters most.

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Hooray for the wonderful experience!

Our worthwhile experience is something no words can really define — not even this thousand-word post. Mt Mago is not a mountain of struggles and not for people who wanted it extreme. But for a two-year-old kid’s first trekking experience? It is something she’d treasure forever. And if she forgot it, I will never get tired telling her how she scaled a 700+ Masl mountain for two hours when she was only a two-year old. 

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I did it! — Ahkirah

Should I come back? Definitely!

Thank you for reading this long story about our boundary climb to Mt Mago. We appreciate it. So, how did we survive our trek with a two-year old child? You can read our post about the tips and lessons on how to survive a trek with a toddler.

‘Til our next adventure!

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi and Ahkirah.

We Survived Our First Trek With a Toddler. | Tips and Lessons

Love her, but leave her wild. ~ Articus, To Kill a Mockingbird

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Ahkirah at Mt Mago.

Two weeks ago, we ticked off another thing from our bucket list — trek with a toddler. Since Ace and I started scaling mountains, it had been our ‘wish‘ to bring our kid(s) with us. As adventurers who value the outdoors, we believe that kids learn life’s little lessons quickly when they are on an adventure. Although we are not blessed with one yet, it did not really bother us because we have nieces and nephews whom we can bring anyway.

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First things first. Friends, meet my sister’s two-year old daughter, Ahkirah. She is the brave soul whom we took with us during our Boundary Climb to Mt Mago two weeks ago.

Like most of our ‘first‘ experiences, the said climb was unplanned and spontaneous. Admittedly, we also wondered how we could survive it, but we did!

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Ahkirah and Demi at the boundary! Hooray!

Here are few things we did to survive it:

  • Never hurry. Let the kid explore.

Kirah toddles a lot. She stopped at anything that interests her. We stopped to pick some wild flowers, we stopped to count the butterflies, we stopped to watch domesticated animals along the way. Knowing that it was her first trekking experience, we let her do just like that. We didn’t want to make her first trek a traumatizing one, instead, we want it to be an adventure that would inspire her young soul to do it again and again. 😀

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  • Bring out the kid in us.

We know that kids get bored quickly. Thankfully, the mountain has a lot of things to entertain the kid’s eyes. However, leaving it to the mountain is not enough. When she got tired, we sang nursery songs and made up funny stories.

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  • Cooperate.

No matter how slow our pace was or how many times we stopped, that one and a half hour climb to the boundary is truly exhausting for Ahkirah. We took turns to carry her when she didn’t feel like walking anymore.

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  • Take short breaks.

Whether we’re traveling with a kid or not, breaks are essential for trips and excursion to give our muscles enough time to relax and regain energy. But we have to limit our breaks into three minutes so we won’t feel more tired.

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  • Stay hydrated and munch on trail foods.

Food is life, water is ‘lifer‘. 😀 I mean, as much as food is important, water is more important. Due to the lack of planning, we only brought 4.5 liters of water with us. We forgot that there was no water source near the summit. We already consumed everything before our descent. Thankfully, we passed by a small community and ask for some refill. As for Ahkirah, we also let her munch on chocolates and sweets.

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  • Embrace dirt.

Get ready to get dirty! Because getting dirty is an adventure itself. We came for dirt, heat, and mud and we got it all. Afterall, the dirt can be washed away, but the memories will last a lifetime.

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  • Always encourage.

Paulo Coelho once said, “Only children believe they’re capable of everything“. But I think, behind every child who believes in himself is someone who believes in him first. I noticed, Kirah becomes more determined to walk farther when we tell her that she could. During our entire hike, we never fail to encourage and praise her for doing a great job.

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And lastly,

  • Teach kids the LNT (Leave No Trace) Principle

Teach the kids so it won’t be necessary to teach adults. I carried a plastic bag with our trash on it on our way back home. Ahkirah asked me why I brought garbage with me, I answered and explained to her the importance of not leaving our trash in the mountains. I reckoned she understood it and I admire her inquisitive attitude. 🙂 It is important to start teaching the kids about caring the nature no matter how old they are. Afterall, it’s for their own future.

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Children are not things to be moulded, but people to be unfolded. ~ Jess Lair

 

We hope you find these tips and lessons helpful. Stay tuned for our Boundary Climb to Mt Mago story in a later post.

Over to you. Have you trekked with a kid before?

 

‘Til our next adventure!

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi

 

Finding Love at Lanigid Hill | Pre-valentine Climb

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Every mountain is, rightly considered, an invitation to climb. ~ Henry Van Dyke

Situated in the far-flung barangay of Liloan, Cebu is a hill which is perfect for first-time climbers or for those who just want to get a dose of greeneries. They call it Lanigid Hill.

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After a month delay of our plan to climb Lanigid Hill, it was finally realized last Saturday. It then served as a pre-valentine climb. Climbing with me were my single friends hoping to find love on top. 🙂

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Feet forward.

The hubby was not able to come with us because he went biking with his friends. So it was my first venture without him, sort of ‘the girls’ climb’.

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We rode a motorcycle at the old Liloan Public Market and paid 100 pesos each. After a 30-minute of almost an uphill ride, we reached Mulao’s barangay hall. There we registered our name and paid the Php10 environmental fee. After few minutes of warm-up we then started our trek to the hill.

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The ascent was a bit easy but enough to get those sweats flowing. For first-time trekkers like Gichelle, it was a strenuous one because of the steep slope and loose soil. But she made it! (Clap, clap!)

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Me and Louise.

Some of the plants along the way had been cut off for the wood to make charcoals which is the locals’ main source of livelihood. But we think, they’re also planting new ones to replace those.

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After 20 minutes of ascending, we finally reached the top of the hill. And this view of Mr Sun greeted us. He’s very up but the wind beat his heat.

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For office people like us, the kind of moment at the top is priceless. With all the lush greeneries and thick vegetation in the area we can’t help falling in love.

My girls, indeed, found love on top. 

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After few hours at the top, we agreed to go down and have a quick visit to Mulao River. You might want to check out our adventure to this wonderful river on my previous post.

How about you? Have you been to this hill? How was it?

We hope you enjoyed reading this post!

‘Til our next adventure.

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi.

 

 

Mt. Naupa, Naga | The Climb

Stop talking about your mountains and start climbing.

We just did!

We’ve heard so much about Mt. Naupa from some of our friends from the blogosphere. It just ignited our curiosity and yeah, just last Saturday we decided to see what the fuss is all about.

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With a staggering height of 584 meters above sea level and ranked as the 8th highest mountain in Central Visayas, one cannot question it’s popularity.

So, let’s see what Mt Naupa has to offer:

Our original plan was to start the climb at 5:00am to witness the sunrise but we sadly missed it because we came late. (Filipinos, yah know.) Anyway, we took a bus from South Bus Terminal and got off at Tungkop, Minglanilla. From there, we rode a motorcycle to take us to Brgy. Cogon. And we started our trek from the chapel where kids are waiting to offer themselves as guide to the mountain.

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We had William and Kent, both thirteen-year old as our guides. These kids really knew what they’re doing because according to them, they climb the mountain every weekends. They even knew how to entertain us and they served as our photographer, as well.

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Kat-kat pa more!

We made a research about the mountain, beforehand. We had to make sure the climb would be easy because we didn’t have any minor climbs but Osmena Peak.

The climb to the mountain is indeed for beginners. The trail is easy and pretty established. Except during rainy days, the soil could be muddy and slippery. The kids said, the climb will not take an hour if we have regular pace. After 45 minutes, we arrived at the campsite.

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Let’s get those feet rested.

We had a few minutes rest and ate our snacks at the campsite. The view from there was already stunning. We couldn’t help taking photos with all the lush greeneries around.

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It’s a plane, no, it’s a bird!

Oh, and we almost forgot…we climbed Mt Naupa together with these three cool sisters — Louise, Daisy, and Ann. These three are awesome! (More climb, girls!)

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The gang on the losse!

When we thought, this is the only campsite… the kids told us that this is just the lower campsite. Now, that made us wonder where is the mountain we’re trying to conquer.

The upper campsite is this hill behind us…. 🙂

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Upper campsite as our backdrop. 

There are no trees to give shade when the sun would be scorchingly hot except this small make-shift hut made from bamboo and recycled tarps. But it looked broken and no longer taken cared of. 😦

So, where is Mt. Naupa?

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There is Mt. Naupa! 

When we reached the upper campsite, the kids told us that Mt Naupa is the eminent mountain in the area. We asked them if we could climb it, but they said it would be dangerous because it’s rocky and the soil is loose. So we have to just settle on the camp area and just look at the mountain while it’s standing proud in front of us. Sigh!

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It’s better in the mountains. 

We were just fortunate to have the mountain solely. We were able to take pictures to our contentment. We even had the trending “mannequin challenge” at the top which was posted on Facebook by yours truly (if you’re following us).

After an hour of resting, the sun started to get hotter… we decided to pack our things and go down. When another kid came and told us that there is a waterfall near. Us, feeling hot and wanting to take a dip in a cold water, immediately headed to the falls following the kid.

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After 3 mountains. 

We came across corn fields and other forms of vegetations. The first 30 minutes was fun and full of talking… when we noticed we already passed three mountains and we did not arrive to the said falls yet. Guess what???? Yeah, you’re right.

We were lost!!!

And yeah, it’s another story! (ahahah) Know what happened on our next entry. 🙂

Despite being lost and going around all the mountains in Naga, Cebu…we still went home with CONTENTMENT and FULFILLMENT in our heart. These pictures may not tell you how happy we were with our adventure we know in our selves, we had so much fun!

 

Expenses: (Below are the general expenses, food expense is not included for you may have different preferences.)

Bus fare: Php60/person  (minimum for airconditioned bus) 

Motorcycle Fare: Php50/person (going up)

Motorcycle Fare:  Php50/person (going down)

*Guide Fee: Php300/5 people (according to guests’ account)

Bus Fare: Php60/person (airconditioned bus) 

 

We hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as we had fun climbing Mt. Naupa. Stay tuned for our next entry.

‘Til next climb!!!

Love, Ace and Demi

 

 

 

 

 

 

Osmeña Peak | Travel Guide.

The ones who climb mountains don’t wait for permission, they just start walking. ~Trinity Bourne

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The summit of Osmeña Peak.

A post about our climb to Osmeña Peak last May also appeared on Side by Side. You may want to check it out. 🙂 

Where is Osmeña Peak?

It is the highest peak among the Mantalungon mountain ranges. Nestled in the Municipality of Dalaguete, Cebu and rising approximately 1,000 meters above sea level, making it the highest peak in the island. It is  named after the famous Osmeña clan of Cebu. It gives 360-degree view of Cebu coastline including the islands of Bohol and Negros.  Just a one to two-hour bus ride from the city.

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How to get there? 

From Cebu City South Bus terminal, catch the bus going to Bato or Oslob via Dalaguete. (Their first trip is 1:30am.) Tell the driver’s assistant (konduktor) to drop you off at Dalaguete-Mantalungon junction. Travel time lasts one to two hours depending on the traffic condition. The fare is only Php101.

From there, ride a motorcycle to Mantalungon Public Market which will cost you Php50-Php75. They can also drive you up to the foot of the peak for Php100 pesos each. (In our case, we started our trek from the market because we arrived too early.)

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What to do there?

It is just a mountain peak, so there is nothing much to do there. But you will be captivated by the 360-degree view of the island and get to enjoy the sunrise with the foggy surrounding. (That is if you are early.) Prepare to be amazed how great is God’s creation. You can have range hopping if you want and just allow yourself to be one with the nature.

Others choose to camp there. There is a camping area set for those who wanted to stay overnight.

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Where else to go?

Mantalungon is the vegetable basket of Cebu, so you can tour to the local’s vegetable farms. In our case, we went to Dalaguete proper and proceed to Obong Spring.

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The Gang!

Travel tips:

Travel light and bring a lot of water. Wear proper climbing attire especially your footwear. If you plan to stay overnight, bring your own tent and make sure to bring a thick jacket or coat to protect you from extreme cold. Beware of the drivers asking you more than the exact fare.

The lot to the crest is privately owned, thus there is a Php30 entrance fee. You can hire a tour guide at the registration area, but the trail to the peak is pretty established so we prefer not to. Just watch your steps. Remember that you are climbing a mountain, some rocks are lose.

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We vow to climb mountains together! 

Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So…get on you way! ~Dr. Seuss

We hope you find this travel guide helpful. 🙂

 

’til our next wander! Keep safe!