By akiranaomi
3 years ago

Hike to Pantingan Peak

The highest peak in crater rim of Mt. Mariveles, and thus, its summit, is Pantingan Peak, consequently the highest point in the province of Bataan, and one of the prominent peaks of Central Luzon. Mt. Mariveles is more known for Tarak Ridge, with its scenic, windy rockscape, overlooking Manila Bay and South China Sea. Whereas Tarak is an outward-looking viewpoint, Pantingan is more introspective, in the sense that it offers a wide-angled view of the caldera of Mariveles (yes, it is, or was a volcano) as well as the peaks that surround it.
It was in the early 1990s when AMCI, led by Sky Biscocho, pioneered the exploration of the Mariveles Range. Tarak Ridge, a product of this initiative, became a popular hiking destination. The other peaks, however, did not receive as much attention, and until now, they remain in a relatively pristine state. Pantingan Peak, considering, its proximity to Manila, can make for a very nice and challenging dayhike or a still-challenging two-day climb.
The climber will first pass through a forest; then grassy slopes will lead him to the base of Pantingan Peak. The trail gets steeper, yet the climbing is pleasant because of the forest cover. From Subuangan Campsite, a small campsite less than an hour from the summit, it is a continuous ascent, and the final part is quite steep, and the trails are overgrown. After this final challenge, though, there is the reward of reaching the summit, and seeing the breathtaking views of the Mariveles range.

Guides and permits No advance permit is required to climb Pantingan Peak, but considering that there are only very few guies who know the trail, prior arrangements with Mr. Rey Jimenez (guide) is recommended. He may be reached at 0928.260.96.45.
Getting there. Take the Bataan Transit (in Five Star Terminal, Cubao), Genesis, or any other bus that heads to Balanga and get off at the terminal, from which you can either take a jeep to Bagac Market, or make direct arrangements for a jeepney to the jumpoff. For the dayhike, renting a van or taking a vehicle from Manila is the most expedient option.

Trail notes. The last part of the trail, leading to the summit, is quite overgrown and thorny; noxious plants abound. Exercise the necessary precautions. On the other hand, the first part of the trail is supposed to have a lot of beehives and even a slight provocation can cause some trouble, as has happened in the past, according to the guides. Follow his advice on how to proceed.

According to Sky Biscocho, Pantingan was first climbed in 1996.

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