Monday, March 22, 2010

Northern Mindanao: White Water Rafting & Zip Lining

It was all so fast. A few minutes after we landed on mountainous Northern Mindanao, we were whisked away higher up the mountains to the starting point of our white water rafting course. We chose the advanced one (even though none of us really had white water rafting experience) solely because people who have tried this adventure told us so.

Cagayan de Oro River

The starting point of the advanced course begins at some bridge by the Cagayan de Oro-Bukidnon border (CDO on one side of the river, Bukidnon on the other). We went with Kagay Adventures for this activity. They arrange these things for a fee, which may cover transfers, instructors, a photographer following you around, rafts, paddles and gear.

CDO White Water Rafting

The advanced course runs for 4 hours. Of course, not all of time you'll be rafting through rapids. For the most part, you'll be floating along the river, which is very nice. Now I know, the prospect of being thrown off the raft, face smashed onto rocks, drowned by rapids, will seem frightening. Haha. But the experience is really enjoyable than what it seems. Photos above are from Kagay, which I don't think will ever do the experience justice.

~ o 0 o~

Right after the rafting course, we were again whisked to an even higher part of Northern Mindanao. We headed to Dahilayan, Bukidnon, around 1 to 1.5 hours from CDO proper. On the way there, you'll pass by what Bukidnon is known for. Hills upon hills upon hills of pineapple plantation. No kidding. Make sure to bring a van or any closed vehicle, though. The road is dusty as hell. We learned that the hard way. Don't ask.

Dahilayan Adventure Park

The Dahilayan Adventure Park features, among many things, what they claim to be Asia's longest zip-line at 840m. From the park entrance, you need to be taken by 4x4 to the launch tower higher up the mountains. That's how far it is. You're strapped on the wires, prone position (i.e., Superman position), and when the safety personnel get the signal, away you go.

Zip Lining at Dahilayan

I think it's the closest thing you'll ever get to flying like a bird. You'll be soaring through fields and above trees. The ride (because ultimately that's what it is, an amusement park ride, just really amped up) is scary but by the middle of it, you'll learn to enjoy it. The best part is, the heavier you are, the faster you'll go. And faster is better. For me, at least.

Zip Lining at Dahilayan

It was late in the afternoon when we finished all of our thrill-inducing adventures. We boarded our ride and started the journey back down the mountain to Cagayan de Oro City. We were all exhausted by then. It was unforgettable, though, because I witnessed my first Mindanao sunset on the way.

Northern Mindanao Sunset


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