Reflection from Mt. Pulag, Benguet Adventure

Posted: January 31, 2011 in Daily Devotion
Tags: , , ,

“I have many people in this city.”-Acts 18:1-11

January 29-30, 2011. More or less 200 climbers challenged the climb in Kabayan, Benguet via Ambangeg trail this weekend.

We arrive the Camp 2 at around 5 PM; I chill as I take photos and videos to document my first brave and daring climb to this sacred mountain. This time, we prepare our tent and our dinner since we want to sleep early so that we may “escape-the-chill-by-sleeping-on-it”.

6 PM. I, Charlie and Yuen sleep as we were thickly covered by our “clothing gear”. TWO SHIRTS. THREE SWEATERS. ONE THICK JACKET. ONE LEGGING MAONG PANTS. TWO JOGGING PANTS. ONE TREKKING PANTS. ONE RAINCOAT PANTS. BONNET. A PAIR OF GLOVES. THREE PAIRS OF SOCKS. The items I mentioned were my complete set of clothes to protect myself from freezing. (You see how paranoid I am? I did this to avoid being on the headline news: PBComer Died Due to Cold Weather. Haha)

8 PM. Charlie wakes up to fix our tent since the strong wind makes our posts vulnerable. As he enters our tent, Charlie chills for 20 seconds! Yuen and I have to hug him really tight so that he may keep warm. I get my “poncho” and tell Charlie to wear it to minimise his chill. A few minutes when everything is manageable including the low temperature, the three of us sleep again.

9:45 PM. Charlie decides to abandon the tent. He gets from me the whistle to give signals from other campers that our situation is getting worse. The moist enters making our bags, blankets and other things around the tent posts wet. We were horrified that if this will continue we might get “hypothermia”. As Charlie is whistling, I use the flashlight to give light signals: turning it on and off. We were at first desperate that no one is paying attention. I pray that God may send us someone to rescue. A few minutes after, we feel that someone walks beside our tent. I and Charlie scream to get his attention; he knocks on our tent, we open the “door” and tell him our concern. A few seconds after, he returns telling us that we may abandon our shelter and move to the “Coleman” one. Bong from Underground Mountaineering Group accommodates us warmly.

Around 11 PM. Bong prepares us coffee and lomi; while we were telling stories and knowing each other more, Bong is grateful because our presence makes him warm also.

Prayer:

Thank you for making Your people available wherever we go: for using Bong and his group mates to look after our safety during our stay in Camp Two; Millet and Paul to lend their extra tent that was used by Delma and Elec; and Raymond, Harrie and the rest of the “Pinakbet Group” that invited us to this one and a lifetime experience. I know everything happens for a reason: the time, people around us, and events are not just coincidences; these are according to Your plans: Bong was first alone in his 4-persons-tent so that he may accommodate the three of us (Charlie, Yuen and I); and we hike the trail at 1 PM and stay in Camp Two instead of climbing the Summit from the Rangers’ Camp at 4 AM because doing so will make the five of us liabilities to the group (availability of the following were underestimated-pairs of gloves, bonnet, raincoat, flashlight and thick jackets- that will signal hypothermia attack to people who will continue to hike the Summit unprepared).

Experiencing Mt. Pulag reminds us the beauty of Your creation. And again, thank you for providing us the strength, will and determination to survive in the second highest mountain in the Philippines (next to Mt. Apo), and the highest mountain in Luzon. Also, the coolest area in the country (I guess, haha) at 2 degrees Celsius (in Camp Two) and lower temperature (reaches negative 6) as the elevation gets higher! =)

All these I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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