We woke up at 5:30am and quickly prepared our breakfast. We are still too far from Basinan campsite. It will took up to 3 hours to Basinan Campsite and from Basinan 4-5 hours to Lake Venado. The trail from e-camp to Basinan is the continuation of the trail from Talomo Summit. Still difficult , muddy, slippery, lots of logs crossing and to top if all , theres the chill being on a high altitude the trek became more challenging. We constantly found ourselves taking a small break,sitting and standing on the heat of the sun, trying to warm our bodies. Eventually , after couple hours of walking, we reached Basinan Campsite at 9:30am.
From Basinan campsite to Lake Venado, the trail became less hostile, allowing us to walk without balancing on logs. Its 2pm when we reached Lake Venado , and took up our lunch facing the Almighty Mt Apo's Peak.
We know that it will be 3-4 hours ascend to Mt Apo Campsite. This time there will be no E-camp, We will pushed to reach the summit, even if it means we need to walk at night.
We expected that we will run out of sunlight before reaching the campsite, and with the constant ascend,meaning we are gaining altitude,We know that it will be windy and cold up there. So I ready my jacket and headlamp, I dont want to be caught unprepared when the sun's out and im already cold.
Slowly the air is getting thinner and the sun's moving quickly to set, so with little rest to take the pictures and enjoy the view, we are constantly moving forward.
It is so difficult to walk at night up there, specially with the wind blowing in all directions, you might lose your balance. Lucky for us , it didnt rain. It just that the wind is so fierce,that my buddy got the first stage of hyphothermia. I was protected by my choice of gear. So the wind is not frightening me at the moment, because Im not getting cold.
I was constantly moving,only resting for a minute to check if Max still behind me. I can still see his headlamp , but we cannot hear each other because of the strong wind engulfing the whole surrounding. I know it will be more trouble if I proceed alone in the dark, so I decided to wait for my buddy finding cover on the big rocks on the trail. If your not moving and your on the open area, the wind will give you creeps, as it is so fierced and hostile, that I sometimes wonder what the hell am i doing there ? With constant movement and hope and will power, we made it safe.,then our guide approach as just before the campsite, saying that one of us is missing. We are shocked because we know that he went ahead of us. He was with our two guides. Imagine our fear and dismay to find out that he is lost somewhere on the trail, under the darkness and violent wind.
The air is thinner and the wind is so fierce up there.
We just hope that he will not panic and stay safe all trough the night. We hope and pray all night that he is safe somewhere in the wilderness.
To be continued..