Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

Hiking has become a hobby of mine and I’ve climbed a number of mountains before. Although mostly day hikes, I can say I’ve pushed myself to the limits. But lately, I’ve questioned myself why am I doing it. Our last hike in Daraitan proved a challenge for me. Was it just the trail or is it me aging? I love nature but I hate the exhaustion. I’m looking for the rush and pushing of limits but when the exhaustion comes I tend to question my adventure.

I won’t forget my first climb in these parts of Rizal. We were supposed to climb Mt. Daraitan, but climbed Mt. Mamara instead, due to the high count of people climbing the prior. Our hike was a challenge. It rained hard and made the trail muddy and slippery. It is also the first time I organized a climb with a huge number of attendees. I was anxious, thinking of the things that will happen. Bad things happened. But despite it all, I’ve learned from that experience.

 

MT. DARAITAN

Our hike to Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies was arranged by Kuta Bungliw. The guide picked us up at around 3:00 AM. It rained the day before so the trail was muddy and slippery. A pile of mud started to stick on our shoes and made every step heavy and hard to grip.

It was still dark when we left Kuta Bungliw. We only had our lights to light our path. Our guide pointed upwards and we saw the silhouette of Daraitan’s Summit. We were still far but we have our wills to carry on.

DSC06134Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

The next steps became more challenging. It was getting steeper and harder to breathe. We reached the peak in time for the sunrise. We were in awe of what we’ve seen. One by one, we climbed the limestone rocks at Daraitan’s peak to have a better view. We took gaze around the mountain and it left us breathless. Sea of clouds everywhere. It covered all the valleys in the area. I can’t help but stare long and be grateful for the experience. It was dramatic. The sunlight hit the clouds and birds flew in front of us. I can’t describe the feeling, it was a view to see.

Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)DSC06105Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

It’s hard to leave the peak but we still have another landscape to conquer. We traversed to the other side to reach our next destination.

 

ATBURAN ROCKIES

The Rockies is part of Mt. Atburan, a mountain just beside Mt Daraitan. It is a newly explored destination for hikers and nature lovers. I don’t know what to expect there. I didn’t see any photos about the place, so I’m curious and pumped up to go there.

Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

We descended Mt. Daraitan and reached the low point again. We trekked and trekked, seeing grasslands and waterfalls. Then finally, we reached the base of Mt. Atburan. The trail to the Rockies looked ancient. You could see that it is still untouched—plants are high which leave the trail covered, insects lurking around you and there’s silence in the forest. I’ve seen different kinds of things that tickled my curiosity. Seashells on the ground, different looking seeds (or fruits?) from a tree and the mysterious limestones around the area. It felt like an expedition to unknown lands. Like Indiana Jones, searching for hidden treasures and civilizations.

Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

I was getting tired and my legs were getting sore. Luckily, my foot injury did not persist. Huge limestones started to show on our path. Finally, it’s the Rockies! It looked like a stronghold from The Lord of the Rings where mythical creatures stay and are on guard. The limestones formed into an enclosure wherein it felt like a place to rest on. A few more steps, we reached the outer limestones which showed a magnificent view of Mt. Daraitan. The limestones were sharp which made it hard for us to sit on it. Despite that, we endured to appreciate the view in front of us.

Looking back at Daraitan made me appreciate the decisions and actions I made. Just seeing the distance and elevation we’ve traveled, all of it was worth trying again (Just not on the same day though. Haha!)

DSC06191DSC06164DSC06185DSC06170Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

BACK TO BASE

Despite my aching legs, I pushed myself to return back to Kuta Bungliw. I thought of our breakfast as an inspiration to move on. Haha! As we continued our descent, I realized that I’m not a “Harkor”, but a nature lover, willing to test his limits to see the world’s wonders. Another important answer to my question is this: I neglected PREPARATION. I did not run and did not bring enough rations, that’s why I was exhausted. Note to self: never ever do this again. XD

I’ve been wanting to climb Mt. Daraitan before but it always got canceled. It is an achievement for me to finally conquer this mountain. Our hike in Daraitan and Atburan Rockies deepen my understanding of my experiences of climbing mountains.

Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies Expedition (Climb Guide)

 

Also check out my climb guide to Mt. Batolusong, Mt. Balagbag, Mt. Maynoba, Mt. Daraitan and Atburan Rockies.

 

ITINERARY

This is our itinerary and expenses based on our experience, which includes our overnight stay at Kuta Bungliw. I’ll be adding additional guides below if you will be having a day hike.

DAY 1

TIME

ACTIVITY

8:00 AM – 8:30 AM

Meetup at Star Mall EDSA Shaw.

8:30 AM – 10:30AM

Ride Van going to Tanay Market.

10:30 AM – 11:30 PM

Ride jeep at Terminal near market going to Sampaloc.

11:30 PM – 12:30 PM

Ride tricycle from Sampaloc to Daraitan River.

12:30 PM – 12:40 PM

Cross hanging bridge.

12:40 PM – 12:45 PM

Ride tricycle from Daraitan River to Barangay Hall.

12:45 PM – 1:15 PM

Take Lunch.

1:15 PM – 1:25 PM

Ride Tricycle to Kuta Bungliw Jump-off.

1:25 PM – 1:45 PM

Trek from jump-off to Kuta Bungliw.

1:45 PM – 7:00PM

Rest, Picture-taking, Swim and Catch the sunset.

7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

Dinner/Wash up.

9:00 PM

Lights Out.

DAY 2

TIME

ACTIVITY

3:00 AM

Wake up call

3:30 AM – 6:00 AM

Start hike to Mt. Daraitan peak

6:00 AM – 6:30 AM

Arrival at Daraitan peak. Picture-taking.

6:30 AM – 8:30 AM

Leave peak. Start trek to Atburan Rockies.

8:30 AM – 9:00 AM

Arrival at Atburan Rockies. Picture taking.

9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Leave Atburan. Go back to Kuta.

11:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Arrival at Kuta Bungliw. Take Breakfast. Rest. Wash up.

2:00 PM – 2:30 PM

Check-out Kuta. Go down to Barangay Hall

2:30 PM – 2:35 PM

Arrival at jump off. We walked up to the Barangay hall instead, then rode a trike going to the river. If you want to save energy, you can request a Tricycle Ride from jump-off to Daraitan (Agos) River.

2:35 PM – 2:45 PM

Arrival at Daraitan (Agos) River. Cross via barge/footbridge.

2:45 PM – 3:30 PM

Leave Daraitan. Ride tricycle going to Sampaloc.

3:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Arrival at Sampaloc. Lunch.

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Ride jeepney at Sampaloc terminal going to Cogeo.

5:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Ride van at Cogeo going to Cubao.

6:00 PM

Arrival at Gateway, Cubao.

 

EXPENSES

ACTIVITY
COST
Van from Star Mall Van Terminal to Tanay Market
70 Pesos
Jeep from Tanay Market to Sampaloc
28 Pesos
Tricycle from Sampaloc to Daraitan River
300 Pesos/3 Persons = 100 Pesos
Tricycle from  Daraitan River to Daraitan Barangay Hall
20 Pesos
Tricycle from Barangay Hall to Kuta Bungliw jump-off
20 Pesos
Kuta Bungliw (For overnight stay at a sleeping hut. Inclusive of dinner, breakfast and Guide for hiking activity.)
850 Pesos
Tricycle to Daraitan River
20 Pesos
Barge (River Crossing)
5 Pesos
Tricycle from Daraitan River to Sampaloc
300 Pesos/3 Persons = 100 Pesos
Jeep from Sampaloc to Cogeo
65 Pesos
Van from Cogeo to Cubao
35 Pesos
Other Expenses (Snacks, Toiletries, Lunch, Breakfast Day 1, Water)
300 Pesos
TOTAL
1,613 Pesos

 


 

REMINDERS/GUIDES/TIPS

How to get there:

 From EDSA Shaw:

  • Ride Van at Star Mall Terminal going to Tanay Market (70 Pesos). If a van is still not available, ride a jeepney going to Tanay and drop at Tanay Market (50 Pesos).
  • Ride Jeepney in front of Tanay Market going to Sampaloc (28 Pesos).
  • The jeepney will stop at the tricycle terminal in Sampaloc. Ride trike going to Daraitan (Agos) River (300 Pesos for 1-4 Persons).
  • Cross bridge or cross via Barge (5 Pesos).
  • Take trike going to Daraitan Barangay Hall (20 Pesos/person).

 From Cubao:

  • Ride Jeepney from Aurora Blvd, Cubao going to Cogeo Gate 2 (24 Pesos).
  • Ride Jeepney going to Sampaloc (65 Pesos).
  • Look for Daraitan TODA. Ride a tricycle going to Daraitan (Agos) River (300 Pesos for 1-4 Persons).
  • Cross bridge or cross via Barge (5 Pesos).
  • Take trike going to Daraitan Barangay Hall (20 Pesos).

 

Power Pack:

  • Trekking shoes/slippers
  • Gloves
  • Raincoat
  • Umbrella
  • Trail Food
  • 2-3 Liters of Water
  • Packed Lunch
  • First Aid Kit
  • Cap/Hat
  • Insect Repellant

 

 

Fees:

  • Guide Fee – 500 Pesos for mountain hiking (1-5 pax) or caving and river trekking (1-10 pax)
  • Tourism Fee – 30 Pesos
  • Environmental Fee – 50 Pesos
  • Parking Fees – P20 for motorcycles, P50 for automobiles and P100 for overnight parking

 

Notes:

  • Be prepared for a bumpy ride when going from Sampaloc to Daraitan. The road to Daraitan is still not developed and most parts are rugged.
  • Guides are required. You can hire them for a day hike or overnight activity.
  • The tourism office offers different packages—a twin hike or a river trekking-caving activity, depending on your desired adventure.
  • Leave No Trace! Don’t leave your trash anywhere and be responsible for the environment.
  • Wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Trees cover the trail that will serve as protection from direct heat, but when it rains, the trail can be muddy and slippery.
  • Although it is day-hike-able, always do some preparations. Run and bring enough snacks and water.
  • Shower areas are available in the Barangay. There are some near the Barangay Hall.
  • Parking areas are available for those who have private transports.
  • If you don’t want the hassle of the fees and securing guides, you can check and plan a stay at Kuta Bungliw. Guides plus the food and accommodation are included in their packages.
  • Before continuing the climb, make sure that the weather is okay. Climbing Daraitan can be dangerous when the trail is muddy and slippery. You may contact Tanay Tourism for confirmation and follow-ups: 09323757376 (SUN) or 09989881590 (SMART)

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