Text and Photos by Euden Valdez
IT was August 2016 when I started hiking. My first time, an unforgettable one, transpired at Mt. Manabu in Batangas. We weren’t able to finish because of an unexpected emergency. It was raining then.
Two years later—yes, also in August—I was able to complete back-to-back hikes: a major climb at Mt. Isarog in Naga and a minor one at Mt. Maynuba in Rizal. No emergency this time but it was raining on both mountains too.
To be completely honest, in my two years of mountaineering, majority are wet climbs. So much so that there’s this running joke among my fellow RAK Ph Mountaineers. That ever since I joined, our group—of outdoor enthusiasts slash volunteers—has constantly and regularly faced wet climbs. (If you think about it, it’s natural since I joined during the country’s rainy season).
I’m used to it, both the joking and the wet climb. In fact, I’ve learned to appreciate and love the latter for all its uniqueness. It never falls short difficulty- and experience-wise.