Inside Out – Nagsasa Cove/ Capones Island

For the second time around, we are again at Nagsasa Cove. Following the exhausting trek up and down Mt. Balingkilat, we immediately rented a hut in one of the camps at the cove. We paid around 400php for an overnight stay including the pitching fee at the place with free use of bathroom and kitchen.

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It takes time and effort to get to know and understand. And when it does, you'll know that it was worth it

Paniki-zoned

We spent the rest of the afternoon letting our tired souls doze off for hours before we prepared our dinner. Night came and we had bonfire by the shore waiting for the peak of the Quarantids Meteor Shower while learning some basics about the constellations. Eventually, shooting stars came into sight from time to time but sometimes it is just bats whom we thought are also meteors, paniki-zoned at the least, and we called it a night.

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Away from everything, campfires bring out stories from your childhood you'd never thought would come back to life

The next morning, we broke camp and climbed the nearest hill to witness once again Nagsasa in her serene wholeness, isn’t she such a beauty?.

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But this is just another short affair with the cove. We descended down and prepared for our next destination. Our contact boat arrived by 10:30am and departed from place.

Capones Island

The last time we’ve been to Nagsasa, we failed to visit the neighboring islands due to bad weather, and this time, there’s no stopping us.

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Leaving Nagsasa for Capones

After an hour of boat ride, we arrived at Capones Island, which looks like an alligator from afar. The tide was so low that the boats can’t dock at the shore near the lighthouse since rocks will be damaging their hulls. The only choice is to swim going to the shore or to dock at the far end of the island and trek to the lighthouse.
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We chose the latter, after docking into the shore, we ate our prepared lunch first. Then off we go. The view was much more better when trekking than going directly into the lighthouse. It took us some couple of wrong trails to the beacon that it took us around an hour before finally reaching it after some exploration climb at the least.
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The other side of Capones Island

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Dilapidated, smoldering, and vintage. That is how the lighthouse greeted us. With the eerie vibe around, camping in here during the night would really be on our bucketlists.
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After spending some time at the top of the solar powered beacon, we trekked back to the shore and took another boat ride going to Camara Island, but the waves are not permitting that our engine stopped at the middle of the sea. We just went back to Pundaquit rather than gambling our chances of seeing Camara upclose.

Capping of the 2-day adventure is a quick visit to the Santos’ residence where they served us  with Chicken Adobo in Pinakurat, Yellow Fin Tuna Sinigang and Zambales Mangoes.

ITINERARY AND BUDGET
(As part of the Mt. Balingkilat traverse Nagsasa, here is the same itinerary.)

Day0
2200  Departure from Caloocan via Victory Liner (221php/pax)

Day 1
0030  Arrival at Subic Police Station, register
0200  Take tricycle to Sitio Cawag (300php/trip)
0300  Arrival at Sitio Cawag, meet guide, register (900php/5pax for traverse)
0330  Start trek
4300  Kawayanan, last water source
0630  Campsite, rest
0730  Mt. Balingkilat summit, breakfast
0845  Descend to Nagsasa Cove
1230  Arrival at Nagsasa cove
1400  Set camp, rest, free time (400php/cottage, free use of bathroom)
2300  Lights out

Day 2
0700  Wake up, breakfast, break camp
0740  Climb nearest hill (20php/pax, entrance fee)
0800  Highest point
0930  Back at campsite, tidy up, wait for passenger boat (1200php/5pax)
1030  Departure to Capones Island
1130  Arrival at Capones Island, lunch
1200  Start trek to lighthouse
1300  Lighthouse
1330  Ascend back
1430  Back at Pundaquit, rest, tidy up, take tricycle to San Antonio highway (60php/pax)
1700  Take bus going back to Manila (250php/pax)

Expenses:
(budget for 3pax)
Transportation: 1031php
Fees: 453php
Food: 300php

Total Damage: 1784php/pax

There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so keep rolling under the stars.
– Jack Kerouac

Go, Carve That Niche,
Rex

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