Monday, February 19, 2007

Bomod-ok. Endurance Test! [Sagada]

There were things I prepared for before going to Sagada, and one of them is Bomod-ok falls. Mainly because this was a major challenge for me last year, when my endurance was really, stretched to the limits!

We started the hike before lunch at Aguid. According to Kuya Perin [tour guide] the path here's longer but less steep [compared to Fidelisan].While Cie and Janet liked the idea, honestly I got a little frustrated. How would I know if I'm buffed this time if we'll take the easier way? [haha just a selfish thought!]

improvised seesaw of igorot kids. cool noh?

the whole group with some igorot kids.
amazing, they all look the same! hehe

So there, we hiked downhill for like an hour [prepare for sunburnnnn!]. The sceneries are extra breath taking, the rice terraces are greener, and I've got more beautiful photos. thus I now love this Aguid path! muhaha. Thanks to Wewoy for tolerating camwhores like me [every 10 minutes, merong "wewoy wewoy picturan moko dito!" at siya naman, kuha ng kuha!]

a perfect candid-but-not-really-candid shot

..and another perfect shot of me on some rice terrace :)

Most of the pathways are easy to take, as they're already cemented. But the rocky path near the river is still as dangerous [but that was fun of course. fulfillment eh!] The sound of the strong current flowing from the mountain, even without seeing it, is still as thrilling. And as expected, the big falls itself was so rewarding. There's still the big "WOW!" even if I've already seen it before!

a real candid pic of me with bomod-ok as my background :)

walang pakealamanan.
this is my dream sagada bikini pose!

Literally, the water's cold like ICE. *salute* to some ST boys who dived here last year! but ey, I didn't give up! dani and I were able to swim, 20 minutes after dipping our feet. haha! [kada 5 minutes, lubog ng 3 inches!] the extreme "brrr" moment was when the water's already chest-level. it made me feel so numb!

"brrr!" ST girls, BEAT THAT!

somewhere below the big rocks. nice background diba?

Sagada Scandal by Alvin Galang. wohoo!

It was already late for lunch [we made reservations at the bamboo grill] so we decided to end the Bomod-ok trip. Of course, the hiking adventure's not yet finished! We had to hike uphill going back, which is even harder than the trek downhill! Like climbing the stairs for more than an hour! As I always say, it's like "stairs going to the office [43rd floor]" but according to kuya perin, "hindi lang! mga 100 floors yan!"

so we hiked uphill, passing through all levels of rice terraces, resting at every shed we see (3 stops yata). when we were already halfway, I heard my stomach grumbling. I realized that I wasn't 100% prepared --I should have brought a sandwich, or at least a chocolate bar! but anyway wna know the overall result? I got no flu, no muscle pain, and I felt like I can take another bomod-ok hike! [well not really. maybe just the half of it? haha] I was only extremely HUNGRY. thanks to cardio exercises!

that was our final site, which was a very good sagada trip ender. I was able to swim and I survived the hike going back --what could be more fulfilling? But then again, as I always say, pictures nor blog posts can't describe the beauty of bomod-ok falls. Or the rewarding feeling once you survive the hike. You have to try it yourself. so guys, explore this WHILE YOU ARE YOUNG! Oh and Don't forget to put this at the end of your Sagada site list. coz this is seriously energy-draining. explore bokong falls first as your warm up!

Don't forget to bring sunblock :-|

Kiltepan-Sumaguing [Sagada]

On our 2nd day, we went to kiltepan for a perfect top view of rice terraces. one thing I learned here: NEVER GO HERE ON A FEBRUARY. coz everything's brown and rice terraces don't look so pleasing, not like in my previous visits (best month to visit kiltepan: April, coz of the planting season)

wewoy, cie, me and janet @ kiltepan

ranting over brown rice terraces
*wishing they're green* hehe

[Sumaguing Cave]
after the short stay in kiltepan, we went to Sumaguing cave. I was so giddy the whole time because IT WAS MY FIRST TIME! i've been wanting to see this cave since my first Sagada, but I was unfortunate during those times --first visit, I was with senior citizens :| 2nd visit, I had flu! This time I was lucky, God finally let me see Sumaguing!

Everything inside the cave's just sooo perfect. stalactites and stalagmites are incredibly shiny in photos, but when touched, they're actually rough like frozen sand! really amazing! (well except for the really slimy part where it's hard to walk --one wrong step will really kill you!) some pics:

"sit if you feel like you're sliding!"

I love standing on cold water...

"water's so cold!"

my pinakanakaka-tense moment. rapelling! :O

our only source of light --one lamp!

me and cie enjoying the super cold water

Exploring this cave is not an easy experience. In fact this is the most dangerous thing I did in my entire life! but it's oh so rewarding. I'm glad I did it! but hey, did I over-psych myself that this site will be too hard? coz I expected something harderrrr. Not that this site's too easy! It's just that I thought of more rapelling spots and too narrow cave vents, haha :D

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Lumiang-Echo-Bokong [Sagada]

Valentines week of 2007: My officemates and I went to Sagada as recommended by the Sagada addict *ahem*. The 4d/3n stay was a blast indeed, coz imagine, in that short span of time we were able to visit everything that has to be seen! And thank God everyone went home satisfied and unharmed!

[First stop: Lumiang cave]
It’s just less than a year since I last saw this place so I was quite surprised to see more cemented pathways and hand rails. But everything else remained the same --it's still so famous for its coffins and it's still a good starter coz though the hike is easier now, a little more endurance is still required!

railings for safety

path that's not cemented before

cave's mouth.
[I used to call this 'daan papuntang impyerno' hehe]

...and the coffins! :)

[2nd stop: Episcopal Church + Echo Valley]
I love how this site tolerates camwhores like us! Aside from being photogenic, the place is so serene, sooo perfect for hanging out or for picnics. Btw when going to Echo Valley. Find the path that leads to the stairs, climb up then turn left. Follow the path till you reach a cliff overlooking the rocky white mountain --That's Echo Valley! (you might want to do the hike by yourself. no tourguide = tipid. hehe)

an FHM pose in Sagada? hehe

camwhore and camwhore

We were resting at Echo Valley when 2 ppl came to see if we're a tour group na "pwede buntutan". when the guy saw me, he removed his sunglasses, looked at me for like 3 seconds and said, "LEDA?!". as shocked as he is, I replied in the same tone -- "ALVIN?!". parang movie diba! ALVIN GALANG (yeah, of S18. my original blockmate) and his girl, Dani, happened to be in Sagada too. on the same dates. so instantly we planned to go on tours and transpos together, so it would be cheaper. so from 4, we became 6! that added to the fun :) It took me 10 mins btw to absorb everything what just happened. that I met someone I know in echo valley. It's unbelievable! what a small world huh?

resting at echo valley

the whole group at echo valley

[3rd stop: Bokong falls]
It was also a surprise that a lot of paths have already been cemented. But whew thank God there's still one steep path left (not that I'm a masochist. it's just that one of the things I love in Sagada is the adventure). Kuya Egbert, our tour guide, was a PRO! He taught us how to step on the steep path correctly. Fun! And, take note. He knows a lot about photography!

Bokong falls hike = nice scenic view!

hiking down on a steep pathway with kuya egbert

me @ small falls

the group at small falls

whew. that was just our first day! ika nga, warm up pa lang. hehe.

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