Trekking Memories2018-12-06T14:08:34+00:00

I climbed Mt Apo in the Philippines at 63 years old!

I was not as prepared as I should have been for the climb of Mt. Apo that I undertook on 14th to the 16th September 2018. I did a little training at home but not nearly enough. It was entirely my fault because for some reason I didn’t imagine that it would be as difficult for me as it was. I have to admit to being a novice at mountain climbing but this was no problem for the Discover Mt. Apo Team. I have also to add that at 63 years old I am perhaps a little older than many who might attempt this climb so please don’t be put off by what I am about to say. It was hard! As well as trekking past fields and villages up the steep paths on the slopes of the fabled mountain, we splashed across streams and climbed up through the jungle undergrowth, over and under fallen trees, at times clinging onto roots and branches to stay upright as we slipped on the peaty paths. Then, as if that wasn’t enough, [...]

Dreams really do come true!

"Dreams really do come true! Climbing Mount Apo and reaching its summit is just but a dream, now finally it has become a reality! My first major climb to a mountain’s peak and to the highest one in the country has become possible last June 30 to July 2 of this year through Discover Mount Apo’s team #DiscoverMountApo. Doubts troubled our minds, weaken our hearts. Ask for help if needed. As we started on foot, climbing that steep hill carrying my pack bag going to Sitio Colan which for seasoned climbers was just some sort of ‘warm-up’ seemed to have drained all my energy abruptly. That moment hit me in the head that my preparation was not good enough, as I was catching up my breath so heavily and there was a second right there that I doubted myself if I can do it. Perhaps, my body did not feel well because it so happen that I had my monthly period. My thoughts were “Why it has to be now???”, though I see ‘it’ coming already. The struggle was so [...]

“Winter Trek” by Singapore Management University Climbers

Winter Trek 2015 Mount. Apo, Davao-Philippines Length of Trip: 6 days Length of Trek: 3D2N Mount Apo is located in Davao, the southern part of Philippines. It is the tallest mountain in Philippines and stands at 2954 metres. In Filipino tongues, it means “master” or “grandson”. This was an unofficial trip by the SMUX Trekking Team, in view of opening up a few slots to the seniors. Day 1-7/12/12: We met up at Changi Airport Terminal 1 at about 5am to consolidate our stuff. As we were trying to save costs in whatever ways we can, we purchased one checked-in luggage only and shared among ourselves (#lifehacks101). Those items that cannot be brought up the plane was placed in Clinton’s 53L Trek Bag. The rest of us all carried one hand carry bag of about 30L respectively. Flight was at 6:35am, and we crashed on the Jetstar plane to Manila. Upon touched down at NAIA Terminal 1 airport, we collected our only checked-in luggage and went to find Ben Chan, who has been in Philippines touring and trekking for [...]

Trek at White Peak: Samal Island’s Highest Mountain

by Bern Boclaras It is summer once again and there are many activities lined up for this scorching hot season. Most people would prefer to go to the beach to cool down and unwind. But how would you like to go on a short mountain trek and then rest your tired body in the sea? It’s like hitting two birds with one stone at the same time. You will not only enjoy the mountain but you will also have time to relax and unwind at the beach. I’m going to tell you about this little paradise in the heart of the Island Garden City of Samal. White Peak or more widely known as Puting Bato by the locals of Samal Island in Davao City is the highest mountain in the island. Standing at a height of 1,345 ft. or 410m above sea level, it has become a popular destination for hiking enthusiasts and mountain climbers. The Trek at White Peak can be reached using two different trails. The Guilon Trail which would approximately take 2 hours hike from jump [...]

MY JOURNEY TO MT APO – PART 3: #savemtapo

by Bern Boclaras It was on that unfortunate afternoon of Black Saturday that the once luscious and green forest of Mt. Apo will be scarred for a long time. I was one of the few who witnessed the fire when it was still beginning to devour more than 400 hectares of land as of this writing. Our group arrived at the peak when the fire was already starting. I was able to take a video of Mt Apo fire incident so people could see the damage that was brought upon by irresponsible mountaineers. I’m very disappointed by how people reacted to this incident. Some were pointing fingers as to who really did it and some were bashing those climbers who were there on that day. There is really no point in doing this since the damage has already been done and there is no more way for us to determine who really did it. The authorities are saying that it was caused by a bonfire left by some campers the night before but this is still unverified, hence, we cannot consider [...]

My Journey to Mt Apo – Part 2: Black Saturday Fire at the Peak

by Bern Boclaras March 26, 2016, the Black Saturday that will be forever etched in my memory. This is the story of how I became a witness to one of the biggest mountain fires that has devoured Mt. Apo. It was the second day of my journey to Mt. Apo. As scheduled in our itinerary, we would be climbing the peak and would be spending the night there. We started our ascent at around 7am. There was a total of 7 people in our group. One German doctor (Doc J) three Davaoeño trekkers (Dan, Ralph and I), two porters (Bradack and Wen) and one of the head guides of #DMAFamily (Fresnow Padernal aka Miko). We left our camp in Tinikaran 1 with much excitement and anticipation. I was so looking forward to taking a lot of nice pictures of the peak especially with the sunrise and sunset since Mt. Apo is noted for it and the sea of clouds. I never would have thought that it would be replaced with fear and disappointment upon reaching the summit. The journey to the top [...]

Gold Coast Travel Vlog #6 – PARADISE COUNTRY!!

Hey guys! If you want to go on a short holiday in Australia, then Gold Coast is the place to go! We went to Queensland's Paradise Country to visit Australia's native animals like koalas, kangaroos and emus! They were super cute and it was a great experience for us all (the weather was so nice as well) 🙂 Hope you enjoyed this short vlog and see you in our next one! ~stay beautiful, stay positive. Lots of love, westaybeautiful xx

Thailand & Vietnam Travel Vlog #4 – Ho Chi Minh City + Bloopers !

Hey guys! This vlog was filmed in Nha Trang and Ho Chi Minh City from Vietnam! We explored many temples and historical buildings. It was a great experience and we gained knowledge about the place as well 🙂 We also added some bloopers / bts footage so if you enjoy them, give this video a thumbs up so we can put more in the future! See you in our next video ^_^ ~stay beautiful, stay positive. Lots of love, WeStayBeautiful xx