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Thursday, September 3, 2009

mt. fuji -- the great escapade 2/2

we were branded as team kalaban (the opponents), the four-membered team. don't get me wrong though, it got us pumped up even more. we got a team name, and we got a team cheer. we went there with AWS pips so our cheer was.

if AWS fails, we won't!!!

pretty solid don't you think? but it was all for fun. later on, "boom boom pow" of the black eyed peas became the team song. wahihihihi...

from the 5th station of the kawaguchiko trail, we started climbing at 2pm. reaching the 6thstation was just easy. the path was short and we were still full of energy, but i was sweating like hell. i wasn't expecting the sun to be that harsh on us. other than that, everything was fine. if the trek is as easy as this, then we will be up there earlier than planned.

(this pic above is from esther)

but the path to the 7th station was a big change. i was a complete mess. the road was inclined which zigzags left and right endlessly. after an hour of walking, i wondered where the 7th station was. finally, we reached the 7th and i got my much needed rest. what have i got myself into??? we climbed some more and to my surprise, the next stop was yet another 7th station. what???? there were like 6 seventh stations total. we still managed to meet our mates in here and have some chat before our team headed on. the whole 7th station leg was a roller coaster. it started with the endless zigzags. then there were also steep trails where you have to step on rocks and use your hands to hold on to more rocks. i very much enjoyed paths like those. what i hated the most were the long and high staircases; so tiring. my legs said "stop" a couple of times. at the end of this leg, team kalaban was leading the pack.

(this pic above is from esther)

moving on, night slowly fell. it was not only dark but it was very cold. we had to put on our flashlights and more warmers. by 9pm we reached the second to the last 8th station: yes, there were also many stops like the 7th. we have decided to sleep outside the lodges. we have eaten cup noodles in the previous stop so hunger is not a problem. it was cold. very cold.... and we had no bed: we laid on the benches. but i managed to sleep for a couple of hours until the lodge owner woke us up. he said that we cannot lay down in there. as sleepiness overcame reason, we had to find a place to sleep fast. we bought hot cocoa and we were allowed to enter. it was heaven inside; there was no strong cold wind trying to enter every pore on your skin. but the hot cocoa didn't last that long... that means we have to face the strong cold wind trying to enter every pore on your skin once more. we were completely caught by the lodge owner's bait--we paid 1000 for an hour stay inside heaven.

at 12:30, it was time to face the strong cold wind trying to enter every pore on your skin. the last 8th station was just a few meters up. in there we decided to wait for the others. this means more sleeping time. we called them up and they said they were still somewhere and had 30 minutes sleep only. poor them... wahihihi. joke. strong cold wind trying to enter every pore on your skin finally had an effect--we passed air the whole time. wahihihi

at around 1:30am, they reached us. we started climbing yet again. but it was so much fun now, it was like a fiesta. there were so many people and so many headlights. watching the lights against the dark night showed us how far we still need to climb. how ironic... but where do these sudden flood of people come from???? i have no idea..

the sun was about to rise but no matter how fast we tried to climb we were blocked by the huge number of people ahead of us. we sat down instead while watching the rising sun. i truly can say that it was the best! i wasn't expecting to see another sunrise after joining this trip. for a colorblind person like me, i was able to appreciate the reds and oranges. breathtaking!

looking around, the huge number of people ahead of us were all sitting down as well. if we have wanted to reach the top fast, we should have ran at this point. right after that magnificent display of the rising sun, people appeared again. where have all these people come from????

the moment i reached the top, i paused for awhile and thanked God. i did it!!! it was a very good experience! thanks to all the people who didn't believe that we can do it, they only gave us more determination to climb up and succeed.

looking down from above, what a wonderful world...


(this pic above is from esther)

ps. looking down the long, steep, descending trail from above... i told myself, i will never do this again.
i'll keep the descent to myself.

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