Mt. Irid: 2nd Day
Sitio Sadlak, Sta. Ines, Tanay, Rizal
Jump-off: Brgy. Sta. Ines, Tanay, Rizal
1,475 + MASL (According to Altimeter reading)
This is what happened on the second day of our climb to Mt. Irid, a continuation to
mt. irid: the road to leeches and river crossing.
Tired, Happy and Fulfilled that’s how we felt before we bid goodnight to each other. We had a very sound sleep, thanks to the coldness of the night. It was like we were being drag to a deeper sleep all through the night.
Right before the dawn breaks, we were awaken by the commotion made by the stevedores preparing their breakfast. It was 4:00am in my watch so I woke up the same with others. We started preparing our breakfast, corned beef, rice, bread, coffee, tuna, spam etc..
By 7:00am we were done with our breakfast and we are prepared to summit. We left most of our things at the bunkhouse except for our water and packed lunch. We prayed for good weather and thank HIM for the blessings and asks his guidance before we embark in our journey.
No more River Crossing!
The summit is seen along the trail but it doesn’t seem to be inspiring. It looks very steep from our perspective. Our guide told us that we could summit by three hours and assures us that there’s no more river crossing. Again, we hesitated believing his 3 hours coz it doesn’t seem like it. Anyway, we just follow his lead. We walk past upland rice plantation, corn plantation, walk past fruit trees like avocado, guava, tigbak (local fruit just like guava and taste like one), walk past grazing carabao until we reach the start of the assault where our guide used his “bolo” to remove tree branches and rattan branches that had fallen on the trail.
The trail is not that steep contrary to what I had expected. It was a gradual ascent that doesn’t require much effort. It was rocky but with dense vegetation, so you have ample tree branches to hold on to when you get out of balance.
We enjoyed most of the trail especially Glenn whose fondness for picture is boundless 😀 He works out every possible pose he could muster just to have a good picture with the environment.
The lush vegetation afforded us a cool feeling even after an hours of continuous trekking. I asked our guide if I could speed up my pace so I could summit early, he said yes so I started walking fast with high adrenaline and excitement to reach the summit. Glenn followed through but decided to wait for the group when he lost me in the trail. I don’t know the way nor I am familiar with the trail, I just trusted my instinct and some guidance from the ground and the environment. (I don’t want to sound like a pro coz I am not) It’s just pure excitement and adrenaline that pushes me.
I saw a lot of biodiversity along the trail, my never ending curiosity always leads me to take pictures of everything that caught my attention. I compile pictures of living organisms I found along the trail of Mt. Irid and put it in one album. Here, have a look: Biodiversity of Mt. Irid
The trails maybe cool due to mossy forest but don’t be lax because the coolness of the trail makes it very livable for “limatik” blood leech. Their presence has been among the concern of mountaineers but don’t fret it is part of Mt. Irid experience.
I reach the place that has 160 degree view of Tanay mountainous area. I took picture of the mountainous view including Mt. Tukduang Banoy, but I could not have a good 160 degree photo so I decided to have two photos from both side and stitch it in post processing. In here I waited for 10 minutes but decided to trek further until I get tired or reach the summit.
I was alone, the mixed feeling of adventure, adrenaline and nervousness makes me move faster. I was stunned when I reach the place with lots of pitcher plant. Here, I stayed for another 10 minutes admiring its beauty and taking photos. There are large sizes, medium sizes, and small sizes, I found the smallest pitcher plant I’ve seen in my whole life it’s as small as my nail.
I reach the summit by 10:01am three hours after we started the trek. It was an easy three hours maybe because I only brought my camera bag not my whole backpack and I have full dose of adrenaline.
I waited, watch the clouds passed by, literally hug it and feel its coolness. What else could I ask? God have shown me again another beauty of his creation. There was a clearing when I reach the summit. I am alone, having the best view for myself, one of the best feeling so far. I thank HIM and praise him for his guidance.
I find a stable place to put my camera and set it to self timer mode and took pictures of myself. Selfie in the making. 😀
Soon after they started to arrive and my happy feeling was filled with new exaggerated happiness maybe because we all feel happy when we share the same feeling with others.
Orbie and Mark Glenn enjoying the rocky summit of Mt. Irid.
Risky yet rewarding, Isn’t it Raymond?
Of course Emil, JV and Sir Bong won’t leave the summit without having a good shot to keep.
Click after click I haven’t notice I have more pictures than I could post process. 😛 We had our lunch at the summit and decided to descend 30 minutes past twelve noon. Before we head back we agreed to have one group pic at the top.
Here’s an altimeter reading at the top, it may or may not be accurate but according to JV (owner of the watch) he had calibrate it.
The whole descent from summit to Sta. Ines is very doable for 4 hours – 5 hours. Two hours from summit to the bunkhouse and another 2 to 3 hours to Sta. Ines. It was easy going down except for an occasional snake crossing your path near the river, just be mindful where you walk. We had a few stops to drink and rest. We crossed the river again, we meet locals along the way, we saw old men carrying provisions or maybe still working as stevedore/porter, we greeted the Dumagats, exchange smile with the kids hoping that one day we could come back and do an outreach activity for them.
We reach Sta. Ines before nightfall, freshen up at the Brgy. Hall open area with manual water pump and eat some at the nearest store before heading back home.
It was one of the tiring experience I’ve had so far and one of the best!
To read our 1st day to Mt. Irid visit this: mt. irid: the road to leeches and river crossing
You may also find this useful: itinerary and preparation for mt. irid (link soon)