Originally, Our plan was to go to Busay Falls in Malilipot, Albay right after lunch. However, due to time lapse incurred by the surprise birthday bash, we had to move the short trip the next day. But we really couldn't yield to our getaway plan. So, we decided to go night swimming at El Carlos, a nearby pool resort.
We took a catnap, woke up before twilight, packed our bags, took light breakfast and drove swiftly. It was brisk and easy. I enjoyed the traffic free scenery during early morn. It took us more or less 30 minutes of drive from El Carlos to Busay Falls. I can say, the road is fairly accessible.
It was still dark when we arrived. The bamboo gate was still close. But you know, we had been here a million times even before they transformed it into a resort. We could set foot in as if we were locals. I just had to leave a note outside for the caretaker to look after the vehicle in the parking area once he makes himself available. Parking fee is ₱50.00 for SUV and VAN type; the smaller the vehicle the smaller the parking fee gets. Entrance fee is around ₱20.00 to ₱30.00 for adults; more or less ₱10.00 for kids. (I don't remember the exact prices. Hehehe! But I'm pretty sure they never go beyond ₱40.00.) Super economy! Cottages made of nipa hut are already available. Price ranges from ₱200.00 and beyond. Sari-sari stores, changing and comfort rooms are also ready for use.
Now we're here, watching the first of the seven splendid waterfalls. I always thought it's enchanting! So beautiful and truly inspiriting. This is how primitive our life can be in an instant; the rising sun, the chirping birds, the waterfall and the two of us. The scene deserves a photograph. Yet, we had to leave to climb the next falls.
These are the second and the third falls. They are twins.. or a couple maybe? The water is crystal clear and cold. It's an ideal place to go swimming for sure. But we'd do that later, we still have more falls to get through. So, let's continue with the climb. The terrain is tolerably narrow and steep so taking extra care won't hurt your hair.
Here comes the fourth waterfall. It's a fascinating multi-tiered cascades. The moment we came here, we began thinking that we could possibly make our way up by ascending through it's cascading water. We thought it would be more thrilling if we go against the strong water current. There's always a safe trail available nearby but we're already here. We could almost reach the next waterfall above. So, how can we not make our own way up? Never had we or anyone maybe tried climbing this waterfalls with or without a rope before. So we were talking..."How about we make our own trail now? Besides, it's only the two of us. Whether we make it or break it? Nobody will ever know!" Without hesitations, we pursued with our free waterfall climbing adventure.
Yan had to take the lead. All I had to do was to follow every step he would take. If he would make mistakes, I could make it right. If he would stumble and fall, I could see it first hand. (Hehehe!) But I knew he was being careful so we won't go wrong. It would've been easier if we had some ropes to use. But with the little help of strong leaves and vines, we were able to make it through the slimy yet shiny rocks. That's when we began ascending through the waterfalls. I had a challenging moment lifting my body up against the cascading water but I did it anyway. Perks of having my own superman with me. I entrusted my life with him so I had nothing to worry about. If all else fail, I can put the blame on him. (Hehehe!)
We made it to the fifth waterfall! Our championship prize? It's refreshing water and it's enchanting beauty ! Wooooh! It was intense yet we made it without me drowning anyway. (Hehehe!) We had to take a moment to catch up with our breaths. We deserved a selfie!
Moving on, we had to continue with our trek. We took a sip of soda to regenerate. Then we started taking more steps ahead. The trail was steep with lush tropical vegetation all over.
We had finally made it to the sixth waterfall. The recent typhoon must've had left a heartbreaking harm into it. Pieces of logs were trapped in the waterways. I noticed the water itself turned a little lifeless. It was flowing vibrantly in our previous visit. But you know, nature is magical. It heals the wounds in a way that is impossible for mortals to understand. I know she would be back into life in no time. I'll give her a swim for sure.
These waterfalls inhabit the Mountain of Malilipot. You'll find each as you continually ascend. This part of the mountain would always give me a bewitching mood. The groves almost cover the ground making it vaguely dark around. Before we knew it, the blue sky had turned black. And just when we started ascending to the last fall, the seventh fall, the rain also started to fall.
We had to slow down since we were taking the shortcut. We were going against the water from sixth fall leading to the seventh fall. Yan and friends had been there before but they took an entirely separate trail. I had no idea where that is but Yan told me it would require us to go back down to take the trail. (Really?No way!). It would eat so much of our time and strength. We would rather follow the watercourse. However, it went darker as we took steps further. We noticed that the water passes through a narrow canyon. It also started flowing stronger as the rain started falling heavier. I like walking in the rain but not in this almost savage trail.
We decided to wait until the rain stops. We looked for a water-free area for safety. While waiting, Yan sat on a huge hanging fallen tree as if he was driving a big bike. I rushed so I could join with him. Little did we know that the fallen tree was actually a "Langatong". The leaves of "Langatong" tree causes an extremely itching pain and irritations in the skin.
It was too late for him to realize since he had already touched one of its big leaves. He started getting itchy. I started laughing then. He said it was painful. I saw his face frowning like crazy. I couldn't help it but to laugh my lungs out! Then we laughed together while his in pain.(lol)
Unexpectedly, a middle-aged man appeared from the foggy trail behind. He had a cute dog with him. We greeted him and he politely responded. His face looked puzzled and perhaps worried. "It's already raining Sir. This area is prone to flash floods." said he to my husband. We instantly understood that he works for the resort. I told him "It's ok, we're going down, anyway. We just had to take a moment because he's got touched a "Langatong" leaf. (With a big teasing smile in my face. Yan has to endure the itch and pain in front of the man. Hahaha! )
Cornered in such bewildering situation, we were left no option but to go back down. This time, we took the safer trail instead. Perhaps, we felt slightly downhearted by not having pursued the seventh fall together. But we shall return for sure. Besides, this place has been our favorite hangout since we were only silly friends. The rain and the "Langatong"? Well, they were not even close to stopping us from having fun. We eagerly trailed back to the twin falls. There, we spent a thousand more seconds of bliss; invested more haunting moments of togetherness.
We went swimming, jumping, picnicking, photo and video taking and laughing and laughing and more. Pieces of these beautiful things in this planet are the most valuable treasures we'll forever be collecting. In time, our knees may not be strong enough to climb or to walk even , but the love we invest in every little memory we make will continue to live forever.