Climbing Mount Daraitan

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

mount daraitan tinipak river
The Tinipak River at the foot of Mount Daraitan
BY Jesca Mariah Mañego

Have you ever been in a mood where you feel uncomfortable of the things going on with your head? And all you want to do is to go somewhere far away from the familiar streets, lamp posts and faces you use to deal with everyday?

Climbing a mountain could be of great help to that kind of problem.

(Read about this guide to Mount Daraitan.) 

I remember the day when I decided to climb Daraitan in Tanay Rizal. By looking at the mountain from a distance you can see how it would definitely give you a hard time to reach the proud orange flag on its peak – at least for a first-timer.

Even before we began, I got excited about the things I might encounter. Climbing to get to station one is what I considered the most adventurous part of the hike. It was where my wildest imaginations took a toll on me. I thought of snakes coming out of nowhere, the possibility of getting wounded by the plant's thorns and worse, even falling real hard while rolling down nonstop from the mountain.

Yet all the silly things I thought would happen were not what I've found, Instead, the soft whispers of the winds, which made the plants danced with the humming birds, sent peace in my system.

No matter how hard it seemed and despite the pain I felt just to set a foot on its peak, I continued walking. The sweet music of the wind has dominated my whole being calming every nerve fiber in my body, making me forget the struggles and even the pain on my stretched muscles.

After getting through the first station, what I've expected is more than what I'd witnessed and experienced to get on top. It's two times harder than the steps I took from the bottom of the great Daraitan. 

All of a sudden, realization caught me wondering about things.

This is exactly how life is, people had to deal with so many obstacles to get on the top. Perhaps it would cost you blood, sweat and tears just to get there. The things around us could mold, make or even break us. It only takes one choice between what kind of path you would want to continue walking and with whom you'd want to walk with, or when you'd stop and get back on the ground because you're tired and had already given up.

However, if you chose to continue then it's going to be a matter of keeping your focus on reaching the flag, and how the things around you could inspire you to move forward and keep you believing in yourself. And when you get there on top you'd barely see the painful trail you'd climbed with no regrets, because all you'd see is beauty.
mount daraitan itinerary
The view from the summit
I caught my self standing in awe of this beautiful creation, everything seemed to be at peace. The majestic formation of rocks is calling me from below.

I stood there on top with the orange flag attached on a white pole, standing high and waving proud. I felt the wind against my face.
mountains in rizal
At the summit
After a moment with the peak of Daraitan, it was finally time to go back because you couldn't stay up there for too long. It was much easier to climb down, for gravity would be much in favor. Also, you have been there before so it won't take you too long to familiarize with he place.

The pathway led me to a river at the foot of the mountain where you'd most likely find serenity. So calm and peaceful to the soul as I lay awake floating on the waters while the little waves crash against my skin, I can also feel my worries swiftly drifting away.

I found courage and a new strength to go back to the place I left and start all over again.



"My emotion is the heart of what I write. I'm a jack of all trades, master of some kind of girl. I always want to live life to the fullest, devour on all the useful information I can gather and seize every moment of the victory, an observer, a listener. I am pretty passionate with the things I really want to do, I am what I am and nobody can change it, except for what I think is better."

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Text and photos courtesy of Jesca Mariah Mañego

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