I noticed that every time I see relatives or friends again after some time, they would all tell me almost the same things like, “Ang galing mo, umaakyat ka na ngayon ng bundok. Pano yun?” which I of course take as a compliment. And from there, they would often ask me about my hiking experiences which is why I decided to make a post about their questions and my answers.
Before I enumerate the questions I am frequently asked, let me start off with some common mountain terms and their definitions based on my understanding:
- Ascend/Descend – Going up/down the mountain
- Assault – Usually means a steep part of a trail often used when approaching the highest point of a mountain
- Basecamp – The part of the mountain where hikers set up their tents for camping
- Jump-off – The point where the trek begins
- MASL – Abbreviation for “Meters Above Sea Level”, unit of measure for the height of a mountain
- Summit/Peak – Highest point(s) of a mountain
- Sweeper – An individual who is at the far end of the group during ascends and descends
- Traverse – Using two different trails to ascend and descend a mountain
- Trek – travelling/journeying to the mountain by foot
- Twin hike/Trilogy/Quadrilogy/Pentalogy – Summiting two/three/four/five mountains in one day respectively
- Paano kayo pumupunta sa bundok? (How do you get to the mountains?)
- We usually take public transportation. There are many blogs online that detail the directions on how to get to the jump-off of a certain mountain.
- I also share directions in my hiking posts
- Madali lang ba umakyat ng bundok? (Is it easy to climb a mountain?)
- Tricky question. I would say that there is no easy mountain to conquer because the experience is different for each. For example, mountain A presents a gradual ascend to the summit versus mountain B, which supposedly makes it easier to hike. However, mountain A’s trail has no trees to shade hikers from the heat of the sun versus mountain B that has a lush forestry. Factors like these will affect the overall experience of hiking a mountain but in my opinion, these make reaching the summit much more fulfilling.
- Gaano katagal umakyat ng bundok? Overnightba yan? (How long does it usually take to climb a mountain? Do you stay overnight?)
- So far the mountains I have climbed are all day hikes, meaning, I finish the hike to and from the mountain in one day. My shortest trek to the summit is about one hour and forty minutes while the longest is about three hours and twenty minutes. Descents are usually faster because, well, gravity. Lol. My fastest one is about forty-five minutes and the longest is around three hours. Nonetheless, I still prefer ascents more than descents.
- I have yet to experience camping in the mountains because I still do not have the right hiking gear (tent, hiking bag, sleeping bag, hiking shoes, etc.). Currently I keep all my climbs to day hikes but there are still other mountains included in my list that will require me to camp because the trek will take longer than the usual day hike.
- Anong oras kayo nagsisimula umakyat? (What time do you start to climb?)
- My earliest one would be around 6:00AM and the latest is around 10:00AM.
- Kailan ka pa nagsimulang umakyat? (Since when did you start hiking?)
- Just this April!
- Ilan na naakyat mong bundok? (How many mountains have you climbed?)
- So far I have only climbed seven but I still plan to climb mooooore!
- Sinong mga kasama mo umakyat? (Who do you usually climb with?)
- I have friends who also climb and we take turns organizing our hikes. What’s great about this is I get to meet new people through my friends during each climb because as they say, “We go up as strangers but go down as friends”
- Ano mga dinadala mo pag umaakyat? (What do you bring when you climb?)
- Hmm, usually my “day hike” bag contains the following: Change of clothes, slippers, plastic bags (for my dirty clothes and shoes), camera, 1L of Gatorade, 1L of water, bread, mint candy, snacks, umbrella, raincoat, first aid kit (basically medicine, band aids and alcohol), money, speakers, insect repellent, sun block, shades, sachet of shampoo and small soap, girly kit
- Di ka ba natatakot umakyat? (Don’t you get scared when you climb?)
- Well, my initial feeling before a climb is excitement. During the climb; however, there are instances when I get scared for my life especially when the trail is difficult but having other friends and a skilled guide with me helps dissipate that fear. And at the end of the climb, the fear is still overpowered by the sense of achievement.
- Anong favorite mong bundok? (What’s your favorite mountain?)
- Still debating between Mt. Batulao and Mt. Pamitinan but I’m leaning towards Batulao because I like land trails more than rocky trails.
- Ano least favorite mong bundok? (What’s your least favorite mountain?)
- It’s not a question of what’s my least favorite but rather, the most memorable one. Probably Mt. Kalisungan because of all the wounds and cuts I got from the dense trail. But do not get me wrong, the mountain is beautiful and I am happy to have climbed it. It just left me with so many things to remember. Lol.
- Ano pinaka-nakakatakot na experience mo sa bundok? (What’s the scariest experience you had in the mountains?)
- I got scared when I climbed Mt. Hapunang Banoi because of how we had to pass through several points where there were cliffs in between.
- Ano pinaka-masayang experience mo sa bundok? (What’s the most fun experience you had in the mountains?)
- Probably seeing the beautiful view that each mountain has to offer. I always get exuberant every time I reach the summit!
- Tuwing kailan ka umaakyat ng bundok? (Every when do you climb mountains?)
- I try to climb at least once a month
- Magkano ang budget mo pag umaakyat ka? (How much is your budget when you climb?)
- I always have at least Php700 in my wallet
- Ano dream mountain mo? (What’s your dream mountain?)
- Right now it’s Mt. Pulag which I plan to climb in January 2016
- May pinagdaraanan ka ba kaya ka umaakyat ng bundok? (Are you going through something difficult that’s why you started climbing?)
- I said before that I always wanted to try climbing mountains but I never really had the chance to do so because I had no one to go with at that time. Right now it’s different because I already know people who share the same hobby but sometimes I still wish I can climb with someone specific. Heh. Nonetheless, climbing mountains has proven to be very therapeutic in replacing my stress and anxiety with happy fuel!
- Sa tingin mo, kaya ko umakyat ng bundok? (Do you think I am capable of climbing mountains?)
- If you believe you can, you’re halfway there! Go legs go!
Hopefully this post helped those who are still uncertain about hiking. I highly encourage everyone to try it at least once in your life to know and to experience how it is like firsthand.
Again, thank you to my friends who invite me whenever they have scheduled climbs and thank you to those who are always up for an adventure whenever I plan one.
See you in the trail!