Saturday, October 11, 2014

Buhisan Damn

Officemate's head pops above the cubicle divider and says, "Hike on Saturday at Buhisan." Then he sends an email and I look at the invite list and it's mostly girls. I sign up, not because of the girls, but because I assume it's an easy hike. Or maybe it's really because of the girls.

The Saturday hike starts off easy enough...
down the slope, in between trees, on a clear path.

Over flat land covered with rocks and pebbles...

...then my officemate, who is leading the group, tells us this will be a river trek.
For a distance we continue walking on rocks and pebbles.
But still no water.

And then we see a small stream: "River trek, at last!"

Our leader takes us over some boulders to a small waterfall with a small pool at the bottom.
Thinking we are already half way, I ask, "Is this our rest stop?"
"Rest stop?" and then he laughs.
He invites everyone to take a dip, but half the group decline and just relax in the shade.
(What he doesn't say is that we are only a third of the way through.)

After the "rest stop", we continue our hike, skipping from boulder to boulder
and sometimes splashing in the water.

Then a quick photo stop by this tiny waterfall.

And onward again over boulders...

Scrambling over neverending boulders, which reminded me of Mt Apo...

...only worse...

Because some boulders are too high for my short legs to reach
(and my body is too heavy for my weak arms to carry),
my friends help out and haul me over:
one pulling my arms, the other pushing my legs.

And in another area, I cling to some vines
while someone struggles to pull up an equivalent of a large sack of rice.

Then I realize we are already in the woods and I heave a sigh of relief.
Goodbye river. See you never!
But it is a sigh of relief expelled too soon.

The steep hike in the woods continues over dried leaves
and under fallen trees...

And one last challenge...
when I face a wall of crumbling soil that is as high as my head.
My friend, using all his muscle power (again), pulls me up,
and I land on a pile of dried leaves,
where I crawl uphill until I am a good way away from the edge.

Damn Buhisan, I underestimated you.

Thank Yous are in order:
To H. Villarante and F. Casinillo for the muscle power.
To H. Villarante and M. Unat for the photos.
To S. Ortega for the moral support.

Buhisan Damn by the numbers:
Estimated number of hours for this hike: 2
Actual number of hours for this hike: 3
Number of weight lifters needed: 2
Number of muscles pulled: 3
Number of bruises acquired: 4
Number of scratches obtained: 5
Motorcycle from Jollibee Labangon to Buhisan Php 25/way
Lunch bought from Labangon market Php 30

Tips (that I learned after this hike):
Wear sandals, shorts, and leggings (optional) for this hike.
Eat a big meal before embarking on this hike. (I did not eat a big enough meal and was hungry an hour into the hike.)
Bring at least 1.5L of drinking water. (I brought just 1L of water which had to be rationed til we got to the end of the hike.)
Bring trail food and don't forget to eat it. (I brought some trail food but only ate one and was tired and starving by the time we entered the woods.)
Bring an extra shirt. (I did not bring an extra shirt and on the way home everyone was looking at me like I just got out of a mud bath.)


  1. Admit it, you want more! :P
    Villarante is my 'outdoors' mentor. So I know that you guys will be in good hands. I should have warned you enough about the boulders though. hahaha.

    1. I want NO more! Hehehe :)
      I blame you and Villarante!!! No warning at all. Tsk tsk.

  2. I miss hiking!!! bad weather letely eh,,,

    1. Yup. Rain rain go away, come again another day, broken halo wants to hike, rain rain go away :D

  3. Nice one Mustachio! We trekked here last year---we remember walking alongside the river. But we didn't pass by those rocks and waterfalls. Hmm....we should visit there sometime. :)

    1. Hello Team Sweetie! This one would be a walk in the park for you are a healthy and active couple. Maybe it was just me and my big fat head and my big fat stomach creating all that trouble.