Up in the clouds

I wanted to go to Mindanao primarily because of Cagayan de Oro’s Whitewater Rafting. I already contacted companies offering the activity, two already found us a group to join (because minimum persons for a trip to push through was six) and I had already set a schedule. I was ready to conquer the rapids but two days before, Dams backed out because of his father. Again, some other time (hello Jinkee! :] ). Instead, we went to Hoyohoy Highland Stone Chapel Adventure Park at Tangub City in Misamis Occidental for what is claimed to be the longest and deepest Zipline in Asia.

From the highway, the park was still an 8 kilometer drive up a mountain.

As we went higher, the visibility of the road decreased and the air became thinner and colder.

2,788 feet above sea level, wow!

Of course we signed the ever present waiver putting all the blame and responsibility on ourselves. Our weight and blood pressures weren’t taken though. According to the staff, their weight limit was 900 kilograms!!! yay!

Harness section.

Hoyohoy’s harness has got to be the simplest I have worn. Walang masyadong arte and they were very comfortable.

The 600 peso package included a 1.5 km zipline from station 1 to 2, another 1.2 km zip from station 2 to 3 plus a horseback or 4X4 ride from Station 3 back to 1. Definitely worth it. From station 1 to 2, we opted for the superman ride. Good thing they didn’t have a weight limit! In fact, according to the very helpful lady at the front desk, the heaviest rider they’ve had was a 130 kg German! Look at the simplicity of their machine: ties and a pulley only, nothing fancy. Plus their breaking system (unlike that of Alindahaw’s) wasn’t painful at all.

What can I say? It felt surreal. At first there was only the whiteness of the clouds and then suddenly, just like in any other form of climax, the greens of the mountainside took my breath away. It wasn’t at all scary and I take back the curses I shouted while I was pulled backward before the push. I like having experiences like these because it reminds me of God’s greatness. For close to 2 minutes (which was long in terms of ziplines), all you have to do is take in the beauty of nature, inhale everything!

The whiteness I was referring to. The line literally disappeared into the clouds.

I was curious with the design of their Ziplines so I asked a staff. According to him, one strand of the yellow/orange tie can hold up to 2,000 kilograms. Yes, not 200 but 2,000 kilograms! He added that the ties were made from bullet proof materials and that they already tested the durability using a 4X4 truck! Yeah Science (imitating Jesse Pinkman)!

Superman wasn’t allowed from Station 2 to 3 anymore since the line was downwards and steep. We were in a sitting position instead. Yo yo yo! My feet are 500 meters from the ground!

I wanted the 4X4 truck but the vehicle was not operational so I settled for the horse. It was another first for me. Didn’t know it was that hard. If not for kuya who assisted me, I would have fallen within the first minute. And I pity the horse because I was a heavy passenger. We passed by other parts of the park like the vermifarm and gardens but I was concentrating on adjusting my butt left and right on the animal so no pictures. Salute to equestrians!

And the adventure came with a proof in the form of a really nice certificate! I now have bragging rights of conquering the longest and highest as of this writing!

It was a good thing that we were the first customers. After our turn, suddenly a line formed in the pre departure area of the Zipline. The fog/clouds were becoming thicker and thicker so we hurriedly took pictures.

The scenery was already hidden under the whiteness.

I’m not sure if this was the stone chapel or a hotel. Either way, it looked like it was taken out of a horror movie. We wanted to explore the expanse of the park but the fog have hidden most sights from view.

Another horror-esque picture.

Time to go! This was taken between 3 to 4 in the afternoon.

When we left the park, the fog suddenly cleared!

We stopped over some store and had a very late lunch of leftover foods from Dams’ party. Hello lechon de leche!

I noticed the abundance of PNP checkpoints all throughout the highway. Despite the signs though, there weren’t any police officers in sight which only means that Mindanao is a pretty safe place contrary to what most of us think.

Night drive. Everyone was tired and asleep except Dams and me. That night I learned the proper etiquette of low lights in a highway especially when there’s a vehicle approaching on the opposite direction because high lights hurt the eyes!

Last day in Pagadian and I was feeling sad. I get easily attached to happy places and good people. But I know I’ll recover. hehe. Life after all, is a series of attachments and detachments. I don’t know, maybe coming back to Manila presented some sort of impending doom for me. My vacation was over. It was time for a reality check. No money. No job. No plans. No idea. Hayyyyyyyyyyyy!

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5 thoughts on “Up in the clouds

      1. Haha. I’m Filipino. Sa Quezon City ako. That’s why I think mahal kung Mindanao or Visayas because halos pareho na lang yung expenses mo pag sa ibang bansa din. Though I know the Philippines is extremely beautiful. I have travelled in Luzon pero sa Visayas and Mindanao, no experience yet.

        Your posts are great! And I love your bucket list! Good luck!

      2. haha. sorry akala ko foreigner ka. actually kung mga entrance lang at food ok sana kaso ang mahal yung pamasahe at tulugan. thank you! sana malibot ko/natin ang pilipinas! :]

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