1. Unpersuasive as it may sound but the main, if not the only, reason of my backpacking to Mt. Manabu last 23 July 2011 was just to taste that homemade kapeng barako of Mang Perying (MP), who is known to be the keeper of the mountain. This paved the way for me to magnify the content of this post through The Coffee Adventure I wrote separately found after these notes.
2. Forgetting to change the “used” batteries of my favorite toy that day and the guavas we ate in our descent made Mt. Manabu equally noteworthy also among the mountains I “kissed” (pun intended). This is the first time, in the course of this endeavor, that I forgot to check the batteries of my camera. The latter explains why I only have three original photos (the first three) to show in this post.
3. I came to know more than just how toothsome the coffee of Mang Perying is because of the “cutting” I saw hangin’ on his cubbyhole’s wall – which contains the keeper’s heroic deeds featured on one of the country’s top newspapers, Philippine Daily Inquirer.
4. This is the first time I was greeted, on the trail, by a snake. Fortunately, the reptile was weak enough that shunning from the possible danger it poses was not that difficult because the creature had just shed its skin based on the proof we saw.
The Coffee Adventure
Months before one of my best hiking friends, Kat, invited me to join D.A.M.N.’s backpacking to Manabu, I have already read pinoymountaineer’s Hiking Matters # 80 where I learned how famous Manabu is for mountaineers because of Mang Perying’s COFFEE.
The trail’s difficulty is only 2/9 but we got to the summit after 2 1/2 hours (a little late than pinoymountaineer’s estimate). We’re slower than expected considering that pm’s info is based on the average if I’m not wrong.
My most anticipated coffee break is about to come when one of the hikers asked about how many minutes (not hours that’s why) will it take us to get to MP’s Hut. As a result, I became more and more thirsty while imagining the aromatic, famous, free, and luscious coffee for Filipino Mountaineers and foreigners as well. After 40 minutes of rushing, Mang Perying’s hut came into sight and this part, by the way, is covered by the descent.
Fortunately, his hot beverage container was full/good for 1o throats and that we were the first to avail those free steins. I must say, the pinoymountaineer’s author is all correct in his write up about the coffee. There’s a distinctive taste in it and the amount of sugar is just perfect. No artificial stuff added but pure and natural. I guess that made the difference. Because of limited supply, however, I only had 2 servings. Still, that’s more than enough. I must say that I was over the moon because my curiosity and thirst were both satisfied.
While waiting for my friends to finish their cups, I noticed this “cutting” hanging on the wall of MP’s.
Because of the picture above, I have learned how heroic MP is for assuming the responsibility of preserving the mountain by collecting garbage at the campsite and for taking the initiative of tying up ropes and placing markers along the steep portions of the trail. The whole story of this hero is on the picture.
Until I came to this part, I didn’t know that the climb was not only about coffee break but a rare opportunity of meeting a genuine hero. MP’s life gave me much to think about while savoring my seat in the bus going back to the metropolis.
– Mount Manabu is my sixth conquered mountain.
For more information (how to get to the place, climbing notes, special concerns, trivia, more stories, etc.), click this: Mount Manabu Peak (750 + MASL).
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