These past 2 years, mountaineering has become enormous in the Philippines. Mountaineers and aspiring mountaineers rapidly increased over the year and most of them neglect the real essence of mountain climbing. Along with this is the increasing rate of accidents and unwanted incidents which often lead to demise.
September 3 2011: Adrian Alba - He disappeared after swept away by a strong current in Wawa River. They go to Wawa River in Montalban Rizal for a BMC (Basic Mountaineering Course) together with 20 other mountaineers. Adrian Alba’s dead body was found at 7am of September 7, 2011 near the hanging bridge 45 minutes away from Wawa Dam.
Source: GMA News Online
February 29, 2012: Diana Urbano Fajardo - She is a first-time climber who hiked to Mt. Batulao in Nasugbu, Batangas with five others when she allegedly lost control while taking pictures and fell 250 feet from Peak 8 of Mt. Batulao. She sustained “intracranial hemorrhage due to traumatic head injury with multiple hematomas and abrasion” in different parts of her body.
Source: Inquirer News
March 31, 2013: Victor Joel Ayson – From his climb in Mt.Guiting-Guiting in Romblon, he immediately proceed to Mt. Maculot in Batangas. He was last seen at around 9 am buying mineral water from a sari-sari store in the camp site. From then on, he failed to return and the authorities conducted a search and rescue operation. Until this very moment I am writing this, there’s still no sign of him. The mountaineering community and his relatives are still hoping to find him alive.
Source: Journal Online
I’m still a newbie hiker but these incidents taught us a lot of lessons and could enlighten everyone on climbing mountains.
First, don’t insist to go if there’s a typhoon especially if there are river crossings on your adventure. Or if you really want to go, make sure that you are fully equipped and physically and mentally prepared.
Second, don’t be carried away by your overflowing happiness on the mountain top. I understand that we are always amazed with the wonderful nature and want to take pictures as remembrance. Just make sure that we are responsible enough and take photos on a safe place.
Third, don’t climb alone. I, myself, have done many solo climbs before and this is one of the lessons I learned from my personal experience. Always go with a buddy or if you really want to have a silent time alone, do it when you’re not exhausted. Read: “My Points of View Regarding Solo Climbs“.
And most of all, always keep in mind that whether it’s a minor or a major climb, we should never underestimate the mountain.