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Trail guide Gil flocked by our freelance mountaineer group Batingaw as we climb mount Batulao in Nasugbu Batangas, June 25-26, 2005; clockwise from left: Fred, Jeremy, Gil, Arnel, Nestor, Donny, Noriel and Archie, photo shot by my ex-gf Chelle

Last 25-26th June 2005, Our freelancer mountaineer group named “Batingaw”,  successfully conquered one of the beautiful mountain named Mt. Batulao hidden between Nasugbu and Tagaytay City.  “Batulao” which named after because of its rocky and steep trails, is not that an easy climb for the beginners.  A lot of courage, care and patience are much needed to succeed.  What cannot be forgotten after all the obstacles’ and hardship are the memories lived beyond the summit.

Our group, who loves to do research for new adventures such as beacheneering, roadtripping and mountain climbings, has got the idea  regarding the mountain through research over the net.  We just simply prepare simple itinerary surfed from the net for our climb.  Then, all was set.

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At the summit of Batulao

After our gathering at Pasay Crow’s terminal around 9:00 AM, completed our things and eaten our  breakfast, we took the bus ride to Nasugbu to Evercrest Hills via Tagaytay City, this is the jump-off site or the starting point of the climb to Batulao.

Take nothing but pictures, waste nothing but time, leave nothing but footprints

At first you’ve would wonder if Mt. Batulao really exists.  Because we entered a subdivision with a golf  course, some rest houses and a chapel and we cannot even see the mountain peak?! That time was a rainy season day and it was an on-and-off raining that time and we are uncertain if we are really going to pursue the climb.  There’s the time when we were looking for the right trail when the heavy rain fell.               

We retreat back to the Chapel and spent our spoiled time praying for the rain to halt.  It took almost 2 hours after the rain finally stopped then we proceed to our journey. We thought we’ve been test how passionate are we to achieve that climb!  We accompanied by Gil (boy residing there and alas! we already believed Batulao really exists after we reached the starting point of the trail).  As a guide, and a resident he almost knows the trail and seems not easily get tired trekking, we paid him 200 pesos for guiding us.  We spent much rest on our trail. We registered at camp no. 1(20 pesos per head) and we decided to assemble our tents and stay overnight at camp no. 7.  We reached camp no. 7 at around 4:30 PM, and at around 6 PM we ate our  dinner that I prepared, yes i was once a chef at the summit.  We planned to trek the summit early next morning.

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Treasured moments, going back to basecamp

Upon reaching the summit, (not that easy as it may seems because you may really feel your nerves shaking and your feet trembling) really feels like you are in the outer world of your dreams!  Mt. Batualo view from the summit is great!  When the sky gets clear, the great view blanketed the whole surroundings. What really amazed us was that those green trees and tall grasses surrounded by and huge rocks standings. It really soothed feelings and relaxed your body and mind.  All your tiredness were transformed to what cannot be forgotten experience. Thanks to God for not allowing to rain very hard that time we camped and reached the summit.

It was a remarkable experience to live by.  That is why encourage others to join our next adventures for them also to feel what really mountain climbing attracts us most and the total guaranteed experience.  And when a new member joined our group, we never forgot to say to them the mountain climber creed: “Take nothing but pictures, waste nothing but time, leave nothing but footprints”.

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