Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

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Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby bear the dog » Wed May 02, 2012 9:30 am

So, after Holy Week in Pampanga, and after a never ending journey to, and from Banaue Rice Terraces, we made our way down south to see my friend Joey in Mindanao.

Mindanao is a place in the Philippines that has been featured in three episodes of the show Locked Up Abroad due to the Abu Sayyaf group who kidnapped tourists and took them to Mindanao.

The Abu Sayyaf Group is the most violent of the Islamic separatist groups operating in the southern Philippines and claims to promote an independent Islamic state in western Mindanao. The group currently engages in kidnappings for ransom, bombings, assassinations, and extortion. Abu Sayyaf means "father of the swordsman" in Arabic.


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Our first walk around the block when we arrived there was with Joey who wanted to show us his Barrio. Before stepping outside, he loaded his handgun, and stuffed it in his waistband. “Ok, let’s go,” he said. I told him many times, and way in advance, that Reza and I would be visiting Mindanao as tourists from Egypt. He said ok, but I think in his dialect it means we want the entire peninsula to know where the Americans are. Everywhere we went Joey was yelling at people from the street to come meet his American friends. Great!
The people were all very friendly and seemed like not too many of the locals didn’t have family in the US, mainly California. All was going well on the streets as Joey pointed out this “stain” on the ground about 100 yards from his house. Story goes, last Sunday, which was Easter Sunday, two guys had an argument and 32 slashes of a bolo later, it was settled. One guy in jail and the other---the morgue!

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When the airplane lands in Mindanao, it lands in the jungle. Just about anywhere you go in Mindanao, you in the jungle! There is town, Dipolog City, and it’s safe, but when tourists take to the jungle, it isn’t. The Abu Sayyaf is set up in the jungle and this way it is advised by everyone there to not go into the jungle, period.

For this reason, we were under close watch by my friend Joey and his people. I think Reza and I felt like we were 3 years old again. Everywhere we went in the jungle we had people fallowing us and usually armed. They called them escorts, but what they really were was full blown babysitters. Badass jungle guys they were though, and it was like being in jungle school seeing how they cook, hunt, make fire, open coconuts, and manage to monkey hunt up the steepest mountains with a rifle in one hand, bolo strapped to their waist, and a cigarette that never seems to go out.

Monkey hunt hike

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First, assemble the escorts
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Check out his cool leather pack
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Check out his cool…carabaoness
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Ant nest
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Only the largest guava I have ever seen.
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Reza having a much needed coconut
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Taking a break as the monkey’s taunt from their trees.

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Peak
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Making a cup to tap some bamboo and collect some h20.
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Roasting the pig in constant rain was a chore to keep the fire going
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Shelter making
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Try it out
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Coconut wine
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DPx model?
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Reza took this with my camera. We were a great source for their amusement.

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One of my favorite pictures of the trip
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby nowonmai » Wed May 02, 2012 10:29 pm

Good times.
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby HockeyGuy » Thu May 03, 2012 5:01 am

Nice summary. Canon 5 or 7d?
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby JITW » Thu May 03, 2012 5:28 pm

Sweet Piks and cool story - were you on a tour?


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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby kilroy » Mon May 07, 2012 1:43 pm

cool photos, yo. what were you doing out there if you don't mind us asking?
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby bear the dog » Wed May 09, 2012 4:02 am

HockeyGuy wrote:Nice summary. Canon 5 or 7d?


I used a Canon 7D, but most of the pics were done with a small point and shoot Canon S95. The camera in the photo above is a Canon 5D, that belongs to Reza (Blindripper).

-RB
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby bear the dog » Wed May 09, 2012 4:04 am

kilroy wrote:cool photos, yo. what were you doing out there if you don't mind us asking?


This answer is for JITW also, since I'm no good with computers.

I was out there to hike, camp, see the displays during Holy Week, visit my friend Joey, write an article or two, take some photos, and just live a little.

Hope you enjoyed them.

-RB
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Re: Mindanao, Philippines-Jungle Trekking 1

Postby Big Duke 6 » Thu May 10, 2012 9:31 am

Another awesome post!
In the case of a nuclear war I wanna be where I can say, "What the fuck was THAT!?"
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