“Travel is never a matter of money but of courage” ― Paulo Coelho, O Aleph

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Puerto Princesa: Ugong Rock (Spelunking + Zip line)


Located in Barangay Tagabinet, less than an hour from Sabang (where boats are located going to Underground River) is Ugong Rock, a limestone rock formation.  The place is called Ugong (humming) Rock because of the haunting sounds that reverberate around the caves when you gently tapped one of the rock formations, the stalactites and stalagmites.

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The Rock stands about 75 feet high.  Adventure here starts from caving/spelunking – exploring and climbing through caves and crevices, and ends to a zip line after reaching the top of the rock to go down.  Actually, you have a choice not to take the zip line and return to the ground by traversing inside the cave again which I think when you have seen and read the succeeding photos and statements, the latter option will not be your alternative anymore (hehehe).

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Wearing of helmet and pair of gloves are required and provided at the ground site.  If you have the usual hiking gear, it’s better or advisable to wear it.  Since Ugong Rock was not on our itinerary from the beginning (reason was mentioned in Budget Puerto Princesa Trip: Day 2), we simply wore shorts and slippers.  Good thing, I was wearing my comfortable and dependable flip-flops that I used on those mostly rough and sometimes slippery surfaces.  Another thing, anticipate to get dirty and sweaty.

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A short briefing from one of the guides before the adventure started…
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Our group were guided by two (si ate at si kuya) from the site (community) members.  Kuya (guide) is so kind that he voluntarily held our cameras and became our photographer that time.
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I was gently tapping and testing the rock (it was really humming!). www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

We were at the bottom inside the cave.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

Guide was bringing a flashlight.  It's dark inside the cave (looks creepy).
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One of the rock formations.
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Sometimes you need to bend your knees and bow your head (at the humility rock).www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

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At the heart of Ugong Rock.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

The hardest part—clambering up the rock.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

I should have had some stretching and workout before I did this spelunking thing.  I wouldn’t have the hard time I guess.  But it was my first time anyways (hehe).  And maybe there was something wrong, I was putting to much weight on my wrists or I had a weak grip.  www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

Another narrow passage.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

Having a hard time again (sign of aging hehe).www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

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On the peak, finally.  We were extremely exhausted.  We sat for a few minutes.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

We were ready for the zip line.  Nervous actually (hearts were thumping).www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

But no longer when I was flying.  I totally loved it.www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

The stunning views and smells of fresh air…www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

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The zip line ride took about only 21 seconds (more or less).www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

The men at the termination point were instructing me to release my hands from clasping the straps in front of my head.  I didn’t listen so I ended up punching my cheek with my right hand (ouch!).www.simplejoysoftraveling.blogspot.com

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Wondering what I have written on the freedom wall?  Okay, here it goes:

“zip line in Palawan..love it! sana makabalik me (hope I could return)…”

Winking smile

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