Mt. Tarak is still in debate if it’s a minor or a major climb, regardless of it’s difficulty, for me our adventure was a major one, because of the unexpected problems we had. Tarak is located in Mariveles, Bataan, more than two hours travel from Manila. This mountain is famous for its ridge and features the famous – papaya river. This river has a cool and crystal clear water, flowing on a rocky canal, down to the town proper.
The Trail | From Brgy. Alas-asin, the first part is walking on a road passing by the residents houses and an ascend up to Nanay Kurding’s house, the registration area. Next, most part of the trail is ascending, the terrain is composed of shrub lands, grasslands and trees. There were part where the terrain is open and where Corrigidor island can be seen from afar.
The Campsite | During our hike we chose to camp by the river, because we love hearing the sounds of the lashing water. But it was a mistake, since we didn’t expected the storm coming in, we witnessed on how the calm river transformed into a destructive and powerful one. It was our first time to encounter that the rain penetrated our *water proof tents. Another option is the campsite before the ridge, it’s a small area, but the ambiance is cool. Photo above: Papaya River
The Summit | The ridge and the summit is more than an hour hike from the river. It’s a wide open space, covered with grass, shrubs and some colorful flowers. On top, there’s a 360 degrees view where the beauty of Bataan can be seen, the breeze is cool and the waterfalls from afar are also visible.
How to Get Here | We rode in a Genesis bus bound for Bataan and alighted in Brgy. Alas-asin and registered at the Brgy. Hall.