Mt. Mago: A Boundary Day Hike to the North of Cebu

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Mt. Mago

The weekend is near and it only means a perfect time for the wanderer to explore the wilderness. People may find me crazy to spend my supposed rest time off work on Sundays to the wild, but I actually find it comforting to walk on hectares of land that comes with muddy, rocky, bushy trail up and down the hills. I enjoy hearing the tweets of birds, the relaxing sound of the nearby river or falls, the warm hugs of the breeze, and the splendid green panorama atop the mountains. In short, I find inner peace when I’m with nature and it pays all the means to reach the peak.
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Since most of my previous climbs were either in the southern part or central Cebu, why not explore the other side of the province. This time, with my friends and new acquaintances, we headed to Carmen to climb Mt. Mago, which is situated within the boundaries of Tuburan, Danao and Carmen. Yes, we were in these municipalities at the same time. Isn’t it cool?
 
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The layman’s term “Expect the unexpected” should not be taken lightly at times. We never expected to have a long habalhabal (motorcycle) ride, trek and a bit of unfavorable weather along the way down the mountain.
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Most of us are coming from Cebu City so we opted to meet at North Bus Terminal to start our day off to nature. It took us roughly an hour and a half to reach Carmen Market on board a mini bus. From the market, we took a long, butt-painstaking motor ride for about 45 minutes to the jump off in Barangay Santican. It’s still rewarding as you will be able to pass by and view the expansive land of banana farm, vegetable farm, flower farm, cow farm and poultry mostly owned by the Lhullier clan. It’s a Sunday and the Barangay Hall where we are supposed to log our names and get a guide or more was closed. Luckily, children who are used to guide climbers are just nearby. We asked them to guide us up and so the wanderlust walk started.
 
Mt. Mago 
 
Compared to previous hikes, the trail to Mt. Mago (Mago Peak) is easy as it is mostly grassy and muddy though there are no tall trees to shade us to rest. We actually spent 2 hours before arriving at its peak, considering the three-year-olds accompanying our journey.
 
 
I can literally say it’s a leisure walk with nature where traffic has no trace. We made several stops to catch our breath and regain energy and, of course, to have some memorable photos. I guess we traversed 3 or 4 steep up and down hills covered with brownish and greenish grass before Mago. This is what you call a great challenge to our legs and foot. Thankfully, the weather was fair that day except for some minutes of not-so-hard rain on our way back to the jump off.
Santican Brgy. Hall 
 Everyone laid the foods on the matted ground for lunch upon reaching the summit. Just steps away from where we took some rest is the cemented mark indicating the boundaries of the three municipalities.
Mt. Mago 
 
Halfway to Santican Barangay Hall, we heard the gushing flow of water and decided to go down and check if there’s a river, spring or falls. Truly, we saw a small fall in that area and, as expected, had some poses.
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The weather is gloomy and rain drops started to shower when we were at the jump off point, making our decision to cancel a sidetrip to Uragay Spring or Middle Earth Mountain Resort firm. We spent another 45 minutes of motor ride to Carmen Market where we had dinner before leaving for Cebu City.
 
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Yes, the whole day activity was tiring, yet very fulfilling. Another item is added to my chest of wanderings and adventures. Where will I be next? I still have to figure it out. ‘til my next travel story then.
 
Mt. Mago 
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Mt. Mago 
 
 

HOW TO GET THERE:

  • Get a mini bus/ceres bus from Cebu City North Bus Terminal to Carmen Market
  • Ride habalhabal (motorcycle) from Carmen Market to Barangay Santican
  • Register name/s at Santican Barangay Hall
 

ITINERARY:

 
Mt. Mago Day Hike in Carmen, Cebu on November 20, 2016
 
05:30 AM: Assembly
06:00 AM: ETD North Bus Terminal
07:30 AM: ETD Carmen Public Market
08:30 AM: ETA Barangay Hall
of Santican (through habal-habal), registration, start the trek
10:30 AM: ETA Mago Peak, Photo Ops, Lunch
1:30 AM: Descend from Mago Peak
3:30 PM: ETA Barangay Satican
04:30 PM: ETA Carmen Proper
5:00 PM: ETD Public Market
7:00 PM: ETA North Bus Terminal
— Home Sweet Home —
 
 

ESTIMATED EXPENSES

35 – bus fare from the North Bus Terminal to Carmen Public Market
100 – habalhabal fare from Carmen Public Market to Santican Brgy Hall
100 – habalhabal fare from Santican Barangay Hall to Uragay Spring
35 – bus fare from Carmen Public Market to the North Bus Terminal
Total: 270/pax
*Note: This cost excludes food and other personal expenses
 

Reminders:

• Everyone should have eaten their breakfast before meet up
• Wear proper hiking attire
• Bring light for ease in traveling, but carry things like trail foods, eating utensils, food for the afternoon swim, protection from rain and/or sunshine, water, energy drink, personal needs
• Respect each other’s time and effort, in short, be on time
• Hike with fun

Watch the video of our hike by travel buddy Asa ni Quen?: Mago Peak in Carmen, Cebu.. Climbing With Kids

 

 

Some photos credit: Asa Ni Quen?

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