Even though the weather was unpredictable, TheCompass Mountaineers pushed through with their scheduled climb at Mt. Marami last June 15, 2012. Mt Marami can be found at Maragondon, Cavite and is considered by mountaineers as a minor climb with a level of difficulty of 3/9. Just to give you a background, here is a brief description of this mountain which you can also read at PinoyMountaineer’s website, and I quote,
“If Pico de Loro were a blockbuster movie, its sequel would be Mt. Marami, set in the same location and sharing the same characteristics. Matching Pico de Loro’s rocky tower are two grand structures, surging up from the slopes: the summit of Mt. Marami, a massive, monumental composite of rocky pillars; and its guardian, the smaller Silyang Bato. The name ‘Marami’ is of local origin, and is attributed to the ‘many rocks’ that formed it. Subconsciously, this choice of name is profound, considering the sedimentary nature of the rocks found in Marami.”
For this climb, our assembly time was 5 O’clock in the morning at GRCF church in Buendia, Makati. Around 6:00am, when everybody were all set, we prayed and then took a bus going to Baclaran. From Baclaran, we had another bus ride going to Naic, Cavite. Upon arrival at Naic, we rode on a jeepney going to the jump off point which is at Brgy. Ramirez, Magallanes, Cavite.
Since it had been raining heavily for the past few days, the trail was very muddy and wet, making it hard for us to move at a fast pace. Moreover, there are a lot of trails which led us into confusion, especially that our guide last visited Mt. Marami about 7 years ago (funny but true!). After almost 6 hours of walk and a few river crossing scenarios, we seemed to be lost. The rain poured heavily but still we moved forward and followed the trail that we thought will lead us to the camp site.
Around 5 O’clock in the afternoon, while heavy rains were still pouring, one of our members felt sick so we stopped walking. Fortunately, we saw a small house so we decided to rest there for a bit. The house seemed to be abandoned so we stayed there for a little longer and cooked for our dinner. While making our preparation, the home owners arrived and we’re thankful that they didn’t get mad at us coz we went in without their permission. We explained that one of our members suddenly felt sick so we need a place to stay with. Nanay Ging, the homeowner, said It was okay and told us that we can stay there over the night. Her sons back then started cleaning the rooms for us. Since it’s too much of a favor for us to sleep inside their house, we decided to put up our tents instead.
After dinner, we fixed our tents and gathered on a small circle for the fellowship. Alvin, a young Pastor from Valenzuela, led the program and made a simple exhortation. The sharing lasted for 30 minutes and it started and ended up with a prayer from Alvin himself. After the fellowship, we went inside our tents to sleep.
The rain kept on pouring all night long and water went into a portion of our tents. Since we were all tired that night, we just felt the water flowing into our feet in the morning.
In the morning, we woke up really early to cook for our breakfast and after we finished eating, we rested a bit and went on to climb the summit. The two sons of Nanay Ging volunteered to accompany us so we felt relieved that we won’t get lost. While doing our preparation, I realized that it was a good thing that we stopped at Nanay Ging’s place coz according to the homeowner, we were heading on a wrong trail the other day.
After around two hours of walk on a muddy and wet trail while the rain was still pouring heavily, we reached the summit. It was foggy though so we weren’t able to see the overlooking view of Cavite and Tagaytay. Nonetheless, we were happy to reach the summit despite the circumstances that happened during the course of the climb. After taking some pictures and after enjoying the cold breeze at the peak, we decided to trek down and went back to Nanay Ging’s house for our lunch. Unexpectedly, Nanay Ging already cooked rice and prepared food for us to eat. She thought that we might arrive late that’s why she prepared our lunch. We then opened our canned goods to add up to the food and joined Nanay Ging and her children for lunch.
After lunch, we packed up and trekked down the mountain with Nanay Ging and her children.They also have a house at Ramirez so they joined us as we head down to the jump off point. It took us several hours on our way down and upon arrival at Ramirez, we stayed at Nanay Ging’s house for a few minutes, took a bath, and rested. After that, since it was already late in the evening and all of us were exhausted and wanted to go home, we hired a jeepney heading to Naic, and then had two more bus rides from Naic going to Buendia.
To sum it up, it was a very complete climb. We were all exhausted, we got lost and the rain poured in, yet we were able to reach the summit and had a safe way home. Initially we were headed onto a wrong direction but God is so amazing that he used that circumstance for us to meet such wonderful people like Nanay Ging and her family. We were able to experience comfort amidst the heavy rains and tricky trails through Nanay Ging’s kindness to us. With this experience, I must say, God is truly the Compass of our lives!