Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Cagayan: Sierra Cave spelunking and kayaking in the Pinacanauan River
Cagayan is positioning itself as the Caving Capital of the Philippines. And it has great spelunking options for beginners and serious cave enthusiasts.
The most popular of course are the caves in the Peñablanca Protected Landscapes and Seascapes, particularly Callao Cave. But a better-preserved and less-visited cave also within the Callao Ecotourism Zone is nearby Sierra Cave. It's a 20-meter steep climb to get to the entrance. But navigating inside is manageable.
The crystal and limestone formations inside are still continuously forming. Which is why they take extra care in protecting the cave by limiting people inside. In fact, they only take in a maximum of twelve people at a time.
It's cool near the entrance. But as you get deeper inside the cave, it gets really warm. I really enjoyed the spectacular formations and observing the animal life inside the cave. It's a surprise how they survive in such harsh conditions since we experienced it even just for a few seconds. We turned off all our lights and kept quiet for a few seconds just to find out the feeling of silence in total darkness.
Anyway, since we had cameras, we decided to exit through the entrance. There's a popular exit but this entails crawling in the mud.
After lunch on the opposite side of the banks, we took a boat further upstream for kayaking activities. Sadly, no thanks to our weird weather, it started to drizzle. And when in drizzles or rains in the Pinacanauan River area, it means the bats won't come out.
So we decided to proceed back to our bus rather than wait in vain for the circadian flight of bats. Another unfortunate incident was I lost all my Sierra Cave photos when my memory card crashed. So thanks to Bikoy for these photos!
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