Tropang Laagan Goes Rizal: Masungi Georeserve

All right! This is the day that we are all have been waiting for. The Masungi Georeserve visit. Since we were coming from Calinawan Cave and unfortunately, burger steak in Jollibee took 15 minutes to be served, we were all panicking. Actually, I did much! hahaha.. Our schedule in Masungi is 12:30PM. It was almost 12NN and we still need to travel for 45 minutes to get there. My officemates, Joyce and Dearry already arrived and to think they came from Manila commuting.

When I read again the email, it said that late comers may be denied entry. Oh, c’mon! What I was thinking that time is if ever we will not be allowed then we traveled from Cebu for nothing. We were all thinking for alibis. Maybe we can tell them that we ran flat tire or we lost in getting there. Hahaaha.. Poor alibis!

Luckily, when we arrived, past 1PM, my officemates were waiting and so the staff at Masungi. We are VIPs! hahaha.. And makaulaw. πŸ˜›

Though, we were allowed to proceed with our activity even if we are an hour late, please make sure to be on time or earlier. It is for your own good. We should be able to spend more time there if we were early.

So after that, we were told to sit downand the orientation started. According to the guy who did the orientation, the place was open to public for visit last December 2015. It is a georeserve, a sanctuary for fauna and flora. One can go there but make sure that you will respect the animals living. Also, they treat the place as a relaxation place where one can meditate and relax. It is prohibited to shout or throw your garbage anywhere. There is no electricity in the area. They did not allow tipping to guides or staff because they want us to spread about Masungi to others and invite them to visit the place. One rule to follow is to make sure that no one is left behind. With that, the tour guide will be first and the leader or the sweeper will be last. The leader should make sure that everyone can catch up on the people at the front. Also, they will ask you to choose a buddy. Your buddy will serve as your partner in case you need help, support or anything. Since we are a troop with that motto of one for all, all for one, we did not choose a specific person to be our buddy. Because we are all each other’s buddy. Yeah, so sweet! hehheehe..

And so the journey begins!

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Tropang Laagan with our tour guide (at the rightmost)


First stop: Lambat (in english: net)

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the rope where we should climb up. that’s obstacle 1!

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for the brave, you can stop in the middle and have a selfie πŸ™‚

There is no other way up but to climb on this rope. One can either go through the easy (left) or hard (right) side. Two persons can go together.

Second stop: Sapot (in english: spider web)

This is what we usually find in the internet. A huge spider web where everyone can stay, take a picture and just relax.

But before we reached here, we stopped and the guide asked us about this tree. Do you know what tree is that? Hmmm..

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pay a visit and discover this tree. πŸ˜›


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yay! finally we are here!

 

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that what a buddy means, helping each other.


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this is Joyce trying to have a yoga pose but the wind made it harder for her


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this is our team’s gonna be famous shot πŸ˜‰


We all have our own solo and best shot here which made us stayed longer here. Check on there FB and IG page. πŸ™‚

Third stop: Patak (in english: drop – maybe because it looks like a drop)

Before you can reach here, we had to pass through the hanging bridge, walk for a few meters, then get inside Unggoy. Patak is the shed in between the hanging bridge wherein one can rest & take a photo.

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the hanging bridge right after sapot


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pahingahan where we rested for awhile after that long trek


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Park Advisory to remind the visitors of the rules in Masungi

 

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finally in Patak!


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a hanging bridge going to Patak


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inside Patak resting while waiting for the first group to finish Ditse


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that’s how Patak looks like from the top. Another hanging bridge going to Ditse


Fourth Stop: Ditse (in english: elder sister)

A few step from Patak (the other end of the hanging bridge) is Ditse. A small peak that we need to climb up from Patak and down to Duyan. Climbing down from here is as not easy as securing yourself from being blown by the wind. Plus you do not have any harness. Good luck! πŸ˜‰

The struggle in climbing up and down without harness.

The view from Ditse: Patak (right) and Tatay (left)

But, know what is the best thing happened in Ditse? The rainbow showed up. It was raining lightly during the trek but that rainbow boost the energy.

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as the song goes, “there’s a rainbow always after the rain” 


Fifth Stop: Duyan (in english: hammock)

When you go down from Ditse, you will be led to the biggest hammock or Duyan. This is also one of the famous spots in the whole trail that we can see online.

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group pic to one of the most photographed spot


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while in Duyan, one can have a good rest (feeling relaxed) while others are taking pictures πŸ™‚

 

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or one can take an instagrammable photo perfect for profile pic πŸ˜‰


Sixth Stop: Yungib ni Ruben (yungib in english is cave)

The other end of Duyan will lead you to the entrance of Yungib ni Ruben. It is the third and last cave explored throughout the whole trip. Though it is just a small cave but still beautiful. There is this big basin or something in the middle filled with water and coins which we believed are from visitors who made wishes. Then there is an aisle with lanterns on the side to give light.

 


Seventh Stop: Tatay (in english: Father)

We need to trek for a couple of minutes before reaching Tatay. We passed by benches and hammocks where visitors can stop and rest. Tatay is the highest peak in Masungi. You can see it from Ditse.

Meet Tropang Laagan. Who did the best pose though? πŸ™‚

 


Eight Stop: Nanay (in english: Mother)

The second highest peak is Nanay. From Tatay, we need to trek to go to Nanay. We did not stay in Nanay longer because it is almost sunset and we are still far from the last stop. But Nanay is beautiful.

 


Ninth Stop: Bayawak (in english: monitor lizard)

Last stop and the new addition to the obstacles is Bayawak. It is an obstacle wherein we need to go down a rope that is formed like Bayawak. Though the rope is the longest but it is not as hard as Ditse. You just have to make sure that you were able to step on the rope as you go down. In the middle, you can stop and take a photo or sit down.

 

We survived Masungi Georeserve trail! Wooohooo! πŸ™‚

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After this almost 5 hours of walking, climbing up and down the rope, going up and down, we finally finished the trail. We then had our congratulatory light snacks of wheat bread, organic veggies, banana, tuna spread and juice. It was past 6 when we reached the snack area and we only had the light from the lamp since there is no electricity. But no one is complaining because that is the best thing about being there. The serenity of the place. Throughout the whole activity, we were able to enjoy every single place, obstacle and view because no one is engaged on their phones posting to social media (except me because I had LTE at Ditse so I did stories.. but that’s it! :P) since there is no mobile signal. More than that, we had the chance to bond and interact with our companions and feel the beauty of nature.

Indeed, what the staff said during the orientation is true. It is a perfect place for those who want to relax and meditate. No one will disturb you. Plus the view is wonderful.

They are adding more obstacles. The place is big and I believe more visitors will be coming to Masungi. If you think that you already see everything in Masungi through these photos, you got it wrong. There are more obstacles that you have to take. There are more amazing scenery that you can see. The photos above cannot justify the beauty and the challenge during the whole trail. Better visit! πŸ™‚

You do not have to be a mountaineer, a fit or sporty to be there. You just have to be determined to do whatever obstacles that you need to. Plus you do not have to worry because you have a buddy or the whole group as your buddy. Like us, we never leave anyone behind, we cheer everyone especially during those hard obstacles and we make sure everyone is having a good time. That’s what is important! Everyone is enjoying and creating a wonderful memory.

Tips for the Masungi goers:

  1. Book through their website ahead of time. Please note that they have limited number of trails in a day. A maximum of 14 pax and minimum of 7 pax per group. The fee is Php 1500 on weekdays and Php 1800 on weekends. Do not book through travel agency.
  2. Choose a time that is doable on your part and be on time. Make sure that you can meet the schedule of your choice. Be there 30 minutes earlier or on time. This is for your own good. The more you have time to explore if you will be on time of your schedule.
  3. The trail will take 4-5 hours (in our case it’s more than 5 hours). I believe it will depend on how many are you in the group. The more the longer you it will take you. Because you will be staying longer for photo ops and stuff.
  4. Since it will take you 4-5 hours to finish, bring some snacks and water. The complimentary snacks will be after the whole activity. Also, there is no water station along the way. Do not forget to keep the wrappers with you.
  5. Wear comfortable and light clothes. And prepare for the cold wind throughout the trail. Shoes is a must especially when you are climbing up and down the rope.
  6. Wear sunblock. Make sure you are able to apply before you start. It will be difficult to reapply throughout the trail.
  7. Bring light bag for your valuables. Do not bring everything. Just what you need. They have bags that you can borrow for your stuff that you will be bringing. You can then leave your  other things to them.
  8. Take good care of your belongings especially your phone and camera. The wind is so strong that it seems you can be blown away. Make sure to hold your gadgets and stuff properly because once it will fall down, goodbye. Remember you are on the top.
  9. Follow your tour guide and keep on their pace. Do not wander around on your own. The place is so big that if you get lost, it will really hard to find.
  10. The leader should make sure that headcount is correct.
  11. Do not shout. You cannot just be a noise to your colleagues but you can disturb the animals living in the area.
  12. Listen to your tour guide. He knows where is the way.Complain if you are tired and want to rest. Just to let the whole group know and so that you won’t be left behind.
  13. You are each other’s buddy. Make sure to help those who are in need. Give moral support those who are afraid.
  14. Be a responsible visitor. Help them protect the georeserve. By not throwing any garbage, not smoking and not doing anything that could destroy nature.
  15. The staff does not accept tip from the visitors. Instead, help them spread about Masungi Georeseve. Be a way so that others can see it and would schedule a visit. The more visitors they get, the better.

 

 

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