Apr 13, 2019

Hiking Indonesia: Mt. Rinjani, Ijen Plateau and Mt. Bromo

Last December 2015, I had the opportunity to explore the eastern side of Indonesia starting from Lombok to the Gili Islands, to Bali and to East Java before heading out to Surabaya for the train ride to Jakarta. With that backpacking trip, I managed to snag a couple of mountains along the way.

These three mountains are a gem on their own and are worth separate trips if you can’t afford a week-long backpacking. I am looking forward to post a brief write-up for each climb:

1. Mt. Rinjani (Lombok)
2. Ijen Plateau - Blue Fire (Banyuwangi)
3. Mt. Bromo (Cemoro Lawang/Probolinggo)

You might ask me if I want to return to these mountains. Yes, I do and I will. After-all, you don't climb the same mountain twice.

Dec 14, 2018

If Nietzsche Was a Hiker....

Ok, we know that Nietzsche is not a mountain climber and this quote is only a metaphor for bearing and enduring so many hardships that you get used to them that you can just wave them off or snap a finger and suddenly find a solution.

But surprisingly, this quote is very relatable to a "once-upon-a-time" hiker like me who's trying to get her groove back. This holds water, as you will always look back to the trying times which you ascertain were so much harder than what you are facing now. And it helps a lot, and it gives you the leverage of confidence that you need to get through almost everything.

Well, another challenge is getting the correct spelling of his name (each mention) for the sake of this post. Lols.

Credits to the owner of the photo.

Nov 21, 2018

Waking Up as November Ends

These past few weeks had been a ho-hum in my existence. I feel like a normal person now, blending in. I now prefer shopping malls and air-conditioned places than the feel of sun kissing my skin and wind gently blowing on my face. Or the limatiks sucking away my blood. I now opt to maintain a fair skin, while once I proudly display my "farmer's tan".

It feels weird to rekindle a fire that's already slathered with fire extinguishing materials. Like finding your way home where you are not welcome anymore, where strangers already dominate your comfort zone. Where you feel out-of-place somewhere you call your home.

So here is a picture of me ----as a reminder of my struggle---, while in limbo trying to revive the mountainlust that previously shaped my life, before I sunk to what I am now. (Dec. 2015)

Sniffing sulfur and getting high on the fact that I just missed the "blue fire"
by a few streaks of daylight..... #Ijencrater

No matter what, I'll retrace my step back. Claim my domain. Fight for my pseudo-existence. Where I am now came with a price, and that is giving up my past old self. But as resilient as I was known to be, I will prove that I can have both.

Folks, this is BPS (and her unhindered opinions)......signing in.

Sep 23, 2017

Notes of a Female Solo Hiker

Back in the day, I was one of the lucky female hikers that were interviewed by a fellow hiker-blogger Adonis Lloren. Here are my answers to few of his interesting questions:

When was your first climb and where?
A co-worker invited me to join her in pursuing her mountaineering dream. I gladly obliged, and we did a research on her target mountain—Mt Maculot. With my naivete, I proposed that we climb Mt. Manabu for the sunrise, pass the idle afternoon trekking Gulugod Baboy (with visits to Lipa tourist spots), and finally spend the sunset hours in Mt. Maculot. I thought it was that easy even for a sedentary person like me.

As expected and out of excitement, I didn’t sleep early and woke up late. We ended up climbing only Mt. Maculot! Start trek was at 1500H, with little water (I’ve got less than 250ml), little food (3 garlic bread sticks, I was on a diet that time), no headlamps (my friend has a lipstick-size flashlight), no proper information, and we were two female trekkers with no mountain guide.

Up there, I witnessed the sunset for the first time, the tangerine-turning-crimson sun setting across the side of Taal Lake. At 1800H, we were set to making the descent when other campers discouraged us. They were so persistent in providing us with food and shelter that we decided to stay. Truth was we wanted to spend a little more time with the mountain. It was May 2007 and we were young and naive.

Sep 17, 2017

MIA No More

Hello dear readers, I have been part of the silent netizen majority these past years. In as much as I love writing, my penchant for reading has taken prime spot on my schedule.

Four years is a lot of time...I have been to places and ticked out bucketlist items. But I haven't traveled as much as I had planned, but I still have time to make up for it don't I?

I will update this blog for combination of posts from all of my travels and mountain climbs. I hope you are all still with me.

As my battle-cry goes.... "I have a mountain to climb!"

Nov 8, 2013

Undas 2013 Trip Summary

trip documentation can be tedious at times

Nothing quenches the thirst of a wanderlust soul better than a multi-day, out-of-town road (food) trip. The year 2013 witnessed a halt in my travel and outdoor life, and a few days of travel is like raindrops on hot and humid desert for me. I crave the airport scene, the plane rides, commute with the locals, the inquisitive looks and conversations and of course new food fares to explore.

Oct 28, 2013

Blog Giveaway: Cheers to 3 Years!

Three years flew by so fast and nothing much has changed in this blog. So many travels and climbs that were not shared! Well, I hope to get rid of that blogger’s block and get back to oversharing my adventures for the world to ogle on. This blog was brought to life in the hopes of aiding the mountaineering community with much needed information in preparing for a climb, albeit the posts on personal outdoor experiences. 

In the years to come, I will strive to document vital details not available from other online sources, so that those who will tread after me will be more informed and confident with their sojourn. We all know how hard it is to be blindfolded while on a climb trip.

My first entry on this blog was posted last November 14, 2010. More than 15 days from now, this blog will cross the 3-year hurdle. Yay! These past 2 years I haven’t had the chance to thank my readers. So to change that, babawi ika nga, I will hold an anniversary raffle contest.

Prizes at stake: Two winners of 1 gift cheque each for a lunch or dinner for 2 persons worth Php1,500 @ Café Astoria in Astoria Plaza, Ortigas.

Oct 20, 2013

Undas Trip 2013 and some updates

hope my trip will be as colorful

I haven't been as active as I was before in outdoor, online and offline. I'm still struggling to stabilize balance between work and recreation by focusing more time and resources with work and myself... which I have neglected for so long because of my love affair for the outdoor that almost consumed me.

Jun 13, 2013

BMC Alert: Ayala Mountaineering Club Inc. (AMCI)

Found the time to clean up my Bundokaholics email and I came across this days-old invite from one of the country's leading mountaineering group. For newbies out there, this is the month when most of the prominent groups are holding training courses in mountaineering... so I hereby christen June as BMC month.

Did you miss the Orientation Night last June 5? Don't worry! It's not yet too late to joinAMCI and live for adventure! AMCI Mountaineering Club, Inc.invites you to attend AMCI's Diagnostics Day on June 16 (Sunday), 6AM, at Valero Carpark, Valero St., Salcedo Village, Makati City. For map and directions, click here.

Prepare for warm-up exercises, a 1.6 kilometer run, strength exercises, and stretching. A bonding activity will also take place, so be sure to have some left-over creative energy after your diagnostics. Come in your athletic attire. Bring a change of clothes, water (or your preferred sports drink) and some snacks. You may also want to bring sunblock, an exercise mat, and your friends!

For more info, please visit our website. Share this email to your friends who might be interested.

I don't specifically endorse them nor vouch for their group's performance and skills in BMC training, but as newbies who wishes to embark on a never-looking-back journey of becoming one of the country's top hikers... it is necessary to have a BMC training from established groups just like AMCI.

Goodluck to all aspiring mountaineers!

Apr 20, 2013

My Less Than 15 Minute of Fame on National TV

Not to be presumptuous or anything, but while walking on the Roxas Boulevard sidewalks on my way home sometime middle of March, a "what-if" scenario entered my mind. What if some of my stories get media attention? What if I get exposure as the first Filipina climber to do the 7 summits? (Ok, that was over the top already lols).

You could imagine my surprise and suspicion when I received this message via my FB page, dated March 21:

After a few calls, text messages, correspondences, back ground checks (lelz!) and confirmation, I was finally set to do the interview at the GMA 7 office along EDSA. I was picked up by the GMA van at our office last March 26. With me were some of my mountaineering stuff and a laptop just in case they want to highlight my blogging stints.

We arrived at the office around 7pm, and I finally get to meet Ram Cheng and the rest of the camera crew. We were delayed by a few minutes because the building admin issued concurrent interview permits for the Mezzanine area. I was told that the ongoing interview was for Imbestigador on the ATM scams.

They set up the lights, and the camera rolled. Nervousness crept on me, an emotion I didn't feel a few minutes before the actual interview. This is my 2nd time on camera, first being an interview by Knowledge Power for PUP Quizzer's Circle  members during my college years.

Activity sequence for their segment was that they will interview me, then they will go to the site. Few days after Holyweek I was contacted again by Ram, asking for more photos. Then I was informed of the date and time it was going to be aired.

Being part of this segment gives me a glimpse of the effort that our comrades in media are exerting just to produce a video segment that's going to be aired for less than 3 minutes. Such dedication they have!

I am thankful to Ram and the rest of GMA 7 for letting me share one of my climb experiences. The interview clip aired may be too short, but I enjoyed retelling my story and sharing my thoughts with them behind the scenes.

Disclaimer: I allowed myself to get exposed on national television for my mother. So that she can see me on TV and have some conversation piece with our relatives. Lols.

PS: I watched it once, shuddered, and promised myself not to watch it again.