We were supposed to join a group of mountaineers because on my first ever mountain climb after I gave birth in 2012, I wanted the company of mountaineers. The group did not reach the required number, however, but we went ahead with the climb. Relying on web information that Mount Manalmon was a minor climb with a difficulty of 2/9, I thought I could do it without the group. It was time I renewed my love affair with the mountains. It has been so long.
We took the 6 o'clock bus from Cubao bound for Cabanatuan. The driver's assistant knew we were going to climb Mount Manalmon from our get-up, so he alerted us when we reached San Miguel. The bus dropped us off a tricycle terminal that led to the drop-off point at Barangay Madlum.
Registration is at the other side of the river.
So one is supposed to inform the officials beforehand of one's intent to climb Mount Manalmon. We did not do this because I was thinking all the while that the group would handle it. We were allowed to do the climb, though. We signed a waiver and rented a guide.
We passed by a cave, known as Manalmon Cave. We emerged just a few minutes later from that cave to be greeted with a sight I was awed at because I love rock formations on river. Madlum River was exactly that. From the river, the trek up officially begins.
I can no longer recall how long we were able to reach the top of Mount Manalmon. All I remember was the so familiar feeling of being one with nature, and being grateful for God's work. The exhilarating feeling of being able to conquer a mountain, however minor, was back when I looked around the beautiful scenery.
Until our next climb,