|Tarak Ridge in Mt. Mariveles, Bataan is one of the best heights for hiking and mountaineering. Nature lovers and adventurers alike find this place a challenging venue for their activities.|
|I came, I saw, I conquered Tarak Ridge with paramount delight and happiness. Her bosom so enchanting and enlightening to my senses.|
|Pantingan Ridge in the south is very visible once you are on the summit of the Tarak Ridge. She also entices everyone to summit her too.|
|Map of Bataan|
|The iron arch of Grafane Farm welcomes |
every mountaineers to come in
|One of the alcoves of the Grafane Farm where our group |
prepped up before the climb
|1230H is quite late lunch for Shobe (left) and Jeshryl, meals they|
bought from a nearby 'turo-turo' along the way but together with other climbers
they need to be physically ready before the painstaking ascent.
|Some female UCMI members and applicants in full battle gears before the summit.|
|Heavy backpack filled with provisions and necessaries|
|Children of the mountain eager and enthusiastic along|
the rough road after the few kilometers of trekking.
|Teacher Dennis Vidar pauses shortly to observe the vast hill|
in front of him and inhale some fresh air.
|Female UCMI members with me in the front yard of the house of Aling Cording where an array of tarpaulins bearing the name of various mountaineer groups serves as an eye candy to the eyes.|
|The trail sign serves as a laughingstock to Bernalyn Basilio (left) who got lost with the others |
during one of our previous climbs. With him is Jeshryl Aranzaso,
one of Magkaugnay and Friends founders.
|Bernalyn amiably takes some photos of the once grassy hill |
which now a remnant of a previous forest fire.
|Corregidor Island,a historical island located at the entrance of Manila Bay is visible|
to the trekkers in some areas uncovered by the vegetation during the climb
|A handy walkie-talkie was provided to some of the climbers|
for easy communication.
|Lally Rosal and Erica Sauler|
|Brothers Geoffrey and Ross Pangilinan with Jaymee Gamil|
|Soft spoken in her contralto voice Aling Cording|
is a friend to all her local and foreign passers by and visitors.
|Aling Cording's small place caters various local foods like hot 'ginatan' and cold 'buko' juice.|
|A young white hairy caterpillar silently creeping |
on the dried leaves on the ground
|The campsite beside the river banks is very conducive for camping|
|The icy cold water of the river is enough to cool up|
the water in our containers.
|Water is life's matter and matrix, mother and medium. |
There is no life without water.
|“Butterflies are self propelled flowers.” |
― Robert A. Heinlein
|'Welcome to my church. It's called nature,' said the butterfly|
|“Life is short. If you doubt me, ask a butterfly. |
Their average life span is a mere five to fourteen days.”
― Ellen DeGeneres
|Erica Sauler, a PDI writer and an environment advocate shows |
her photo to the young UCMI Mountaineer applicant
|Lally Rosal (right) makes face while Ross Pangilinan, |
her tent buddy teases about her lost mountaineer ID during the ascent.
|A shallow lagoon with crystal clear, icy-cold water is surrounded |
by autumn colored fallen leaves which ruffled everyone's feet during the drenching in it.
|Some of my friends delightfully soak and splash in its mystic and mineral filled water after dinner|
|The worn-out trail with thick disintegrating soil is a no-no to some mountaineers |
as it brings danger of possible sliding
|Lally poses gaily with the big exposed root along the worn out trail.|
|Some UCMI members show their eternal smile upon their arrival to the mid summit.|
|Sweat-drenched and not so famished Magkaugnay and Friends members |
merrily poses to the camera with the sun rising in their background.
|The scenic vista of the hillock going to the topmost summit of Tarak Ridge|
|When the sun is shining I can do anything; no mountain is too high, no trouble too difficult to overcome.|
|From a vantage point, the Tarak Ridge looks like a spine of a giant Anaconda creeping slowly.|
|Obviously, the eastern part of the ridge is somewhat bald. The density of grasslands and forests are abundant in the western portion because of the forceful breeze that is whipping it everyday.|
|The panorama of Pantingan Ridge|
I am here for a purpose and that purpose is to grow into a mountain, not to shrink to a grain of sand. Henceforth will I apply ALL my efforts to become the highest mountain of all and I will strain my potential until it cries for mercy. - Og Mandino
Never measure the height of a mountain until you have reached the top.
Then you will see how low it was. - Dag Hammarskjold
|The ridge is also home to some endemic plants|
|The trail on the summit part is bare and rocky which is obviously slippery during rainy season. |
On the other hand, it is covered with arch of thick bushes and some sharp twigs of various vines and shrubs.
|The majestic sun begins to soar in the plurality of the sky and generously radiates its energy and magical blessings of life.|
|Satiating the eyes with the kaleidoscope of nature |
while nomming trail food to satisfy the stomach
|Quench your thirst with the glories of nature only God could afford|
|"Chasing angels or fleeing demons, go to the mountains."- Jeffrey Rasley|
|“When the wind calls, you know, that somewhere in the mountains, it has found the answers that you were looking for. The pull of the horizon overcomes the inertia of reason…And you just have to go.” - Vikram Oberoi|
|“Keep close to nature’s heart…and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” - John Muir|
|“This mountain, the arched back of the earth risen before us, it made me feel humble, like a beggar,|
just lucky to be here at all, even briefly.” - Bridget Asher
|The best friends Jesh and Geo|
|The silent type Tophz Camatoy minus his buddy.|
|Sir Gerry Sta Rosa, Ms. Cherrielyn Coronejo and Ms. Coney Bagumbayan|
|Even on the mountain top, there is no reason not to take a 'look-up' shot|
|All refreshed after the Tarak Ridge climb|
|Soul mate can be found some times in the mountain, if you are soul searching.|
|“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out |
going to the mountains is going home; that wilderness is a necessity...” ― John Muir
|The UCMI members, guests and applicants for a group shot at Grafane Farm before calling it a day.|
and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, |
are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.