We left Davao proper as early as 1:30 am for our much-awaited outreach program in Tboli. We took the Gensan bound bus in Ecoland, travel time was about 4hrs. From Gensan, it took us another 1 hour trip to get to Marbel. It was already around 7 am when we reached Tboli. From there we took a 1 hour dump-truck trip to Sitio Kule. If you opt to ride the habal2x or single motorcycle, travel time can be cut short to 30 minutes.
Upon arriving in Sitio Kule we were introduced to the Tboli natives. We were all overwhelmed by their warm welcome. We distributed slippers and notebooks for the children and medicines for everyone right away. After distribution,they served us authentic Tboli food for lunch such as different Kakanins, corn, Kamote and native coffee. It was without a doubt a journey made more meaningful and fulfilling after seeing the genuine smiles of the T’boli people who were so grateful and content with our simple little act of generosity. After witnessing the Tboli’s heart-warming response, we almost totally forgot how tiresome and difficult it was to get there.
To reach Lake Holon, there are two trail options to choose from, if you are an adventure enthusiast you may go for the Sitio Kule Trail or hunters’ trail. If you want the easier pathway you may choose Sitio Nabol which only takes around 3-4 hours.
Photo by Jayvie Piamonte of Lakawero.com
At around 1 pm, we already left Sitio Kule and trekked 2-3 hours to reach the view deck of Lake Holon. From the view deck most of us took time to reflect and appreciate the remarkable beauty of the picturesque lake. Afterwards, it took us another hour and a half hike to reach the Lake itself. It was already past 5 pm when we arrived at the lake’s crater while others even arrived later at 7pm.
When we reached Lake Holon, we immediately set-up our tents, prepared food and had our dinner. At 8 pm we started introducing ourselves to all of the participants in the climb to establish rapport. Subsequently, we slept early so that we can witness the beautiful sunrise and Lake Holon’s vibrant scenic setting.
Early in the morning, we woke up early to cook our breakfast. Then we took tons of pictures of ourselves with the tranquil Lake Holon as our background. On our way home, we decided to take the more convenient main trail in Sitio Nabol since most of us were already exhausted during the whole trip.
On its entirety, our weekend adventure was a weekend well spent. Every bit of hardship that we surpassed along the way was compensated by the heart-warming welcome of the people whose lives were touched in our own small ways; not to mention Lake Holon’s majestic beauty totally blew us away.
Big thanks to Olan AKA The Travel Teller and Sir Jon of Mindanao Tourism Council for the wonderful privilege to be invited in this awe-inspiring journey. And to Louie of Takladtamig/FHM for organizing the event.