Its 2 am and the rain was incessant. After a little over two hours of trekking, I was soaking wet. The narrow trails we are on are beginning to look like small streams. With a visibility of just a few meters, the trail, with its overgrowth, looked less and less familiar. Cold and tired, we conceded to nature. We found a small clearing, pitched our tents, and decided to wait for first light to pursue the trails again. Our usual 3-4 hour trek will take longer this time.
This is not the first time I’m doing a night trek to Mt. Romelo, a favorite destination because of its waterfalls. But it’s the first time a typhoon is “passing by” (Typhoon Jolina) while we are trekking. My group has been assessing the situation several days before and concluded its still going to be a safe trek, even with the heavy rains.
We broke our camp at 5AM and continued trekking. The chilly wind was enough to keep my senses alert, beats having a strong coffee in the morning. The forest floor is littered with santol fruits (wild mangosteen) which probably fell due to the strong downpour last night. Along the way we picked wild guavas for a quick breakfast. Real breakfast will have to wait until we reached the campsite.
We found the Buruwisan campsite empty, but not for long. Other groups arrived by mid morning and several more arrived the next morning (Sunday). Some attempted a night trek but failed as well.
By mid day sky darkened and thick fog fell on the place like a white curtain. Unlike my previous visits there where one would probably find me exploring one of the falls at such time of the day, this time I was content on staying put in the campsite and enjoying a hot cup of coffee.
The river near our camp (located at the top of Buruwisan Falls) has swollen and is rushing wildly. I’ve been there on rainy days before but it was the first time I saw a change in the character of the place.
I was able to go down to Buruwisan Falls the next morning. After a couple of shots I decided to climb back up to the campsite. Exploring the other falls would be quite difficult with the current conditions of the streams, and I would not risk the photo gears I have with me.
This trip yielded the least photos but some of the images quickly became my personal favorites. I think some of the shots I took during this trip are my best photos of Buruwisan so far.