Reaching Mt. Apo’s Summit – Conquering the Highest Peak of the Country

Mt. Apo – Everybody wants a different kind of achievement. With that, I have traveled to different places in the last 3 years.

I have been to different waterfalls, joined marathons and now, I want to get some more mountain climbing.

Last November 16-19, 2017 were one of the most fulfilling days of my life. I got the chance to climb the highest peak in the Philippines, the Mt. Apo. I wanted to experience survival and challenge myself for more because I know I can do it, just like in life.

I hope you would enjoy as I share here the different milestones of my climb to Mt. Apo.

mt apo jump off

Day 0

– Our jump off site was in Sitio Colan. We took a motorcycle for hire or “Habal-habal” from Brgy Kapatagan in Digos and arrived at a certain dam site. We had to trek for around 10-15 minutes to reach the Sitio Colan itself. We had our homestay in the households there and paid 50 Php per person. The people were hospitable and the place was already cold.


Day 1

– Our wake up call was 5 am and prepared our stuff for the most awaited ascend. We took our breakfast and left Sitio Colan at around 8:15 am. We arrived at Sitio Tumpis after around 20 minutes of trek. We reached Sitio Daruk where we took a little rest, refilled all our water bottles, ate our snacks and took some pictures.

We continued on our climb. The first 2 hours of this trail will really measure your physical strength since it direct ascends to the jungle with steep and elevated parts.

The whole group really felt the agony of the trail but it was filled up with joy while witnessing the beauty of nature around us. Sometimes, it would become foggy and the weather was an addition to the beauty of our experience.

We arrived in camp 1 at around 11:55 am, we took our lunch and had an hour of rest there.

mt apo camp site

We resumed our climb until we reached Camp 2. We had to pass along many fallen logs before we reached this area. We were a little bit tired but still with high spirits because we know what’s awaiting us at the top. We reached the side of the mountain where there is a sulfur-emitting area. The view is like that of the grand canyon and I was amazed at the different rock formations. Boulders and smoke dominate the area.


Day 2

– We arrived in Lake Venado at 11am. We took some rest, enjoyed the view of the whole Mt. Apo while having our lunch and did some photo shoots with the group. We continued trekking afterwards since everybody was very eager to reach the summit.


The trail from the lake to the summit is another climb and at this point the whole group feel the stress of going up specially it suddenly rained and everybody was getting cold. We were already at 10311 ft above sea level.

The whole group was tired at this point but written on their faces were contentment and self-fulfillment of being able to conquer the highest mountain in the country, myself included.

The cloud formations were spectacular and everybody had a moment of appreciation and reflection for their efforts from all the hardship of going up and reaching the goal to be on top of the highest mountain of the Philippines – the Mt. Apo. Who doesn’t love to be on top?

Essentials to bring:

  • Navigation
  • First Aid
  • Flashlight
  • Food & Water
  • Clothing
  • Sun Protection
  • Multi-tool
  • Fire
  • Whistle
  • Shelter

Improvised heater needed.

Since it would be so cold at the top of Mt. Apo, it is wise to bring a tin can, cut it in half, put some alcohol in it, cotton and set a fire within. This is very effective!

Lessons Learned:

Your patience will be tested. There will be plenty of hard work to do before getting the things/opportunities/dreams you aim for. Life is what you make it, and you got to stop being lazy in order to reach the top.



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