Welcome to the Real Batad …

In coming to the Philippines, I had one major travel goal to achieve i.e. Get myself to Banaue and Batad. Given the description of the hike to Batad from the “Saddle” (the limit of where vehicles could go), I was quite reluctant to attempt this hike given the state of my physical condition : “A fat ass who can lift heavy rocks“, however I can halfway around the world and nothing was going to stop me from checking off number 41 on the Hillman Wonders list.

What my research didn’t tell me was that

  • Rain severely hampers your progress, but not unsurmountable
  • Landslides can kill you, but only if they fall on you. If they happen 25 seconds after you walk by a point, then you shouldn’t freak out.
  • Water travels down, hence if it rains at the top the Rice Terrace Amphitheater, then you will get tons of amazing waterfalls – that’s good! Right? Well not, if the waterfalls become mini rivers that cause you to lose your footing down the path
  • Renting a CRV is useless in going to Batad and that you absolutely must use a jeepney – unless you want to explain a broken axel – See Iceland with Rishi and Lev. You may ride with the locals and broke backpackers or comandeer one yourself at your beck and call.

For instance, the following information about travelling to Batad was not available on video or via a travelogue.

If this information was available, I might have reconsider going to Batad. The operative word is “might”, meaning there would be a 1.10% chance I would not going to Batad – since it would take a broken leg for me not to go. Another thing, that one cannot truly appreciate without being there, is the driving it takes to navigate those roads.

Well in the end, here was the final outcome before we left the van to hike up our own to the Saddle.

About Rishiray

Rishi Sankar is a Cloud HRMS Project Manager/ Solution Architect. Over the past 15+ years, he has managed to combine his overwhelming wanderlust with a desire to stay employed, resulting in continuing stints with 3 major consulting firms (IBM, Deloitte, Accenture). He documents his adventures around the world on "Ah Trini Travelogue" with pictures and stories from the road/tuk-tuk/camel/rickshaw. You can follow him on Twitter at @rishiray and on Facebook at "Ah Trini Travelogue . He doesn't like Chicken Curry but loves Curry Chicken and is always trying to find the perfect Trinidadian roti on the road. He also doesn't like cheese and kittens ... and definitely not together. E-mail from his blog is appreciated like a 35 yr old Balvenie at rishi@rishiray.com

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