July 21, 2008
It had been a while since I had been to makiling. Last July 12, I decided to climb it again and see what are the changes. As a primer, Makiling is situated between Batangas and Laguna province. It stands 1000++ masl (meter above sea level). Mt. Makiling was closed after typhoon Milenyo hit the NCR area, trail became confusing after the storm and there were reports of landslides. A popular mountaineering website announced it was already opened and thats the reason we decided to climb.
Upon registering at the Ranger checkpoint we learned the mountain was still close (bummer). But they are allowing hikers if they will just go up to the mudsprings. We signed up our destination was only upto mudsprings eventhough we had another intention in mind.
One thing I've noticed is that the clear path before entering the main forest was now a rough road. I remember it was made of asphalt before. Mudsprings now look like a muddy lake unlike before it was made of several potholes with boiling mud inside.
I never thought that Limatik ( a tropical leech) was very abundant during the rainy season in Makiling. There were like 5-10 attacking each one of us at a time. Length was between 1 - 3 inches. Its my first time to encounter this insect and its really horrifying LOL. I think 5 were able to go inside my pants and bit my lower legs, good thing I bought a spray bottle with alcohol. It worked perfectly.
Unfortunately we didnt got to summit. We got lost at a part of the trail entering somewhat of a deadend. Since we were only three and all male mistakenly we decided to proceed at this wrong trail. Entering a trees and shrubs covered part of the mountain. When we decided to backtrack we lost more than 1 hour of time. After backtracking we were able to find the right way but since according to my watch there are still 200++ masl remaining, we presumed that night will be on us if we proceeded. And since we dont have any light ( i forgot my headlamp). We decided to backout.
Its is still a good experience for me. Seeing limatik for the first time and also knowing the right way now, will be back to conquer makiling. But preferably during summer so that there will be less/none limatiks.