April 22, 2014
Heading out to Rodriguez, Rizal, you will reach two of the gateways to the famous Sierra Madre Mountain Range, Mt. Maranat & Mt. Balagbag. The group’s original plan was Mt. Balagbag aka hellipad but was convinced by the barangay folks to try Maranat, besides M’Irene already trekked Mt. Balagbag before. About 0900H when the group started the trek after hitchhiking to man travelling near the outpost, registered at the Barangay post (P10 registration) then headed out to the trail. Unknown to many, Maranat is actually the name of the falls which is covered by Mt. Oriod.The falls is a majestic sight to behold. Tree bearing fruits are abundant in the area while the cascading water from the falls is a relaxing view to watch. The group met M’Helen on the way when somebody offered a motorcycle ride to M’Irene who’s catching her breath due to severe heat and assault. Turns out that the man was not a resident there and isn’t familiar to M’Helen so the hoped for ride for M’Irene was gone with the wind. The group then met Prim and the kid (forgot his name) they guided us to Mt. Maranat for P250.
Despite the slash & burn and coal mining in the mountain, it offers wonderful views and a challenge for outdoor enthusiasts. The group then resumed the ascending - descending trails to waterfalls, often times we will stop for a while to take some shed and breathe due to a scorching heat to a deserted burnt forest parts. About 1200H when we arrived at the foot of the waterfalls, without hesitation we dunk in the water, dived and cooled down our warm bodies then took some snaps and ate our precious foods (biscuits haha!) 1430H when the group arrived at the jump-off, Ate Prim offered us there meal that day (langka with tuyo, sayang walang gata) the trail topic of the group, haha! We devoured then paid the guide fee & food plus a bonus of photo snaps and S’Vich gave the children an extra bucks. P350 for food and guide fee.
Mt. Maranat is a new paradise for mountaineers especially to those who wants to feel nature just in the outskirts of the city. Just make sure to bring hats, caps or anything that can cover against the scorching heat of the sun or just avoid summer time. Thanks to M’Irene, M’Avie & S’Vich for another adventure. You rock! High five. :)