2ND ON CAVING MOUNTAINEER & SPELUNKER CAVE CONGRESS
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2ND VISAYAS MOUNTAINEERS AND SPELUNKERS "ON CAVING" CONGRESS
THE LANGUN GOBINGOB CAVES
1. JONI A.BONIFACIO TREXPLORE CATBALOGAN,SAMAR
2. FRANCISCO V. TIBE TRIBU HIBATANG ADVENTURE CALBAYOG CITY
3. JUN IGNACIO TRIBU HIBATANG ADVENTURE CALBAYOG CITY
4. TROY ALFORQUE TREK OUT MOUNTAINEERING MANDAUE CITY
5. RAGAS, BRUCE TREK OUT MOUNTAINEERING LILOAN,CEBU
6. TAN IAN GIDIONNI TACLOBAN CITY
7. DELACRUZ FORMOLIZA TACLOBAN CITY
7. JINNIFER BAUTISTA TACLOBAN CITY
8. ARVIN N. CASYAO TACLOBAN CITY
9. RENULFO Q. ARBIOL DENR UEP,CATARMAN N. SAMAR
10. FLORDELIZA C. DELA CRUZ DENR-8 TACLOBAN CITY
11. RAQUEL F. LARIOSA LOCAL GUIDE LAS NAVAS N. SAMAR
12. ROMUALDO G. LARIOSA LOCAL GUIDE LAS NAVAS N. SAMAR
13. RUBEN ORSOLINO LOCAL GUIDE LAS NAVAS N. SAMAR
14. FRANK CORONA LOCAL GUIDE LAS NAVAS N. SAMAR
15. JHUN TY CATBALOGAN,SAMAR
16. RICKY BAUTISTA SAMAD OUTDOORS CATBALOGAN,SAMAR
17. JA MACARIOLA LASAU CATBALOGAN,SAMAR
18. NONOI VERDEJO CBRM CALBIGA,SAMAR
16 LOCAL CAVERS AWED INSIDE GIGANTIC CAVES
CATBALOGAN, Samar - “At least were here! Thus, exclaimed one of the 16 local mountaineers and cavers who made it to attend this year’s annual cave congress dubbled as “2nd Visayas Mountaineers and Spelunkers “On Caving” Congress” held in Brgy. Panayuran, Calbiga last May 14-16.
“Prior to this caving experience, I had a doubt that there is such a place like this. A place that in the past I thought it existed only in my mind,” says Bruce Ragas, 31, a government employee in Cebu City whose skills includes ropemanship, cave survey and mapping and vertical caving.
Ragas is just one of the many participants that were amazed of the wonders of the caves in Calbiga, Samar. Others local cavers also made positive statements about the caves.
The 3-day activity started on May 14 which aimed to unite the mountaineers, spelunkers, environmentalists in the Visayas that will help equip and provide means for the public in addressing awareness on Samar Island Natural Park (SINP) and other tourist destination in the Visayas.
This was sponsored by the Catbalogan-based Samar Adventure Service (SAMAD) and the Samar Island Biodiversity Project (SIBP) in close cooperation with the local government of Calbiga and the Department of Tourism Samar Provincial Office.
During the first day, Ms. Evelyn Amit-Corado, the SIBP Co-Project Manager, discussed to the participants the significance of conserving the biodiversity as well as the implementation of the park. In her presentation, she introduced to the participants, especially those from outside the region, how the Samareños fought against mining and illegal logging in the island of Samar.
“We need to do this for the next generation, and we need the help of everybody regarding this certain advocacy,” she said after her lecture, a video presentation on environmental campaign, the experience of the town of Calbiga for winning the “Worlds most livable community” in Netherlands were also shown.
The next day this writer, who is the lead organizer of the event, including his group guided the 16 new breed of adventurist (about 80 percent came from Region 8) inside the promising Langun-Gobingob Cave, which is the Philippine’s biggest cave.
The participants, as they began entering the tiny hole of the cave, agreed to the same observations that 80 big passengers buses, or 50 commercial passengers planes, put together, side by side, can fit the largest chamber of the cave.
“There is a portion that the small hole on the cave wall is enough for an average-sized human body to pass through into one of four entrances virgin world that is perpetually hidden in picthdarkeness,” Ranulfo “Randy” Q Arbiol, a PENRO officer in Northern Samar, who also joined the event said.
“Actually, a week’s stay in the cave is not enough as there are more to find inside the cave. There are guano deposits in many sections, some in mounds which, because human eyes couldn’t detect in the dark, could pull you down when you mistakenly see them for just being a part of the hard cave floor of hard stone,” Ms Leslie Dela Cruz of the DENR Regional Office, Tacloban City told obviously, impressed by the cave, told this paper.
Joni Bonifacio, also shared his experience saying, “there also bats. Continuously drippings stalactites and stalagmities that turn it into golden objects of amazements.”Records obtained by this paper in the documents reports written by the Italian speleologist who explored the caves way back in 1987 disclosed that Langun-Gobingob Caves in Brgy. Panayuran, Calbiga, Samar claims a total land area of 2,968 hectares. Its known entrances are found only in Calbiga, but its enormous size covers the unsuspecting areas under the towns of Hinabangan, Pinabacdao in Western Samar and part of the province of Eastern Samar at it south section.
The participants who vowed after the exploration to join the 3rd Cave Congress that will possibly be held in Northern Samar were Raquel Lariosa, Romualdo Lariosa, Frank Corona and Ruben Orsolino, all tour guides of the DOT Catarman, Northern, Samar Jennifer Bautista, Ian G. Tan, Arvin Casuco, all of Tacloban City, Nonol Verdeje of CBRMP Calbiga, Jhun Ty, Joni Bonifacio, Troy Alforque and Bruce Ragas of Trek Mountaineers in Cebu City, DENR’s Rabulfo Arbiol and Flordeliza Dela Cruz.