Major jump-off: Brgy. Ramirez, Magallanes, Cavite
LLA: 405 MASL
Days required / Hours to summit: 1-2 days / 4-6 hours
Specs: Minor climb, Difficulty 3/9, Trail class 1-3
Mt. Marami is a nice place to visit, although it's trail seems like a maze as branches are present and confusion is very prone and trail guide will be necessary unless you have mastered it's trail. If Pico de Loro were a blockbuster movie, its sequel would be Mt. Marami, set in the same location and sharing the same characteristics. Matching Pico de Loro's rocky tower are two grand structures, surging up from the slopes: the summit of Mt. Marami, a massive, monumental composite of rocky pillars; and its guardian, the smaller Silyang Bato. The name 'Marami' is of local origin, and is attributed to the 'many rocks' that formed it. Subconsciously, this choice of name is profound, considering the sedimentary nature of the rocks found in Marami. Indeed, in recent geologic past, Mt. Marami below sea level. Silyang Bato, for its part, has a more modern etymology; according to the locals its original name is 'Nagbuo', and was christened with its present name by the earlier mountaineers.
The jump-off point to Mt. Marami is Brgy. Ramirez in Magallanes, Cavite. However, the summit and its environs are under the jurisdiction of Maragondon. It is a 3-hour drive from Manila; passing by the coastal road, onwards to Tanza, then Naic; from Naic a jeepney can take you to Magallanes. Brgy. Ramirez is just 10 minutes away from the town proper. The barangay fits the bill of a classic rural village. At the end of the road, marked with a water tank, is Brgy. Councilor Punongbayan's house. It doubles as the jump-off point. You can arrange for guides here.
The trail begins smoothly; although it poses concerns for both wet and dry seasons. It is severely muddy when wet; whereas sun exposure is notoriously acute when dry. Even so, the views are rewarding. The first landmark is 'Ilog na Kayrayag', a nearby river; next is Bangkaan River, which you have to pass thrice. In both rivers, you have the wade your way -- water is usually knee-deep though with heavy rains, they may swell to forbidding levels. The last river crossing is around 1.5 hr from starting point. A bamboo bridge was in place here, before it was wrecked in April 2007.
The ascent commences after Ilog Bangkaan; and here, there are two variants of the trail. One is the Nuestra Senora dela Paz variant, and the other is the Talahib variant. The former offers frontal views of both monuments (including a close-up of Silyang Bato), and is recommended over the Talahib, even as the latter has a more gradual ascent, and it is the one used by the locals. In both trails, the environment is comprised by woodlands and sections of grasslands.
THE NUESTRA SENORA TRAIL
This trail approaches Marami from the west. Thirty minutes into the Nuestra Senora, you'll encounter a nipa hut, called 'Kapihan' by some. Nearby is the last water source. An hour into the trail is Campsite 1, which offers majestic views of Silyang Bato and Mt. Marami. After one more hour of trekking, the bamboo forest will be reached. After an hour, Campsite 2 appears, in the southern portion of Mataas na Gulod. From here, you will enter another forested part to reach the base of Marami, where a campsite, the one most often used, is located. A ten-minute assault of the summit ensues.
Note: trail to Mt. Marami is exposed and the is unforgiving, so bring
enough heat protection like umbrella, sun visor, sunblock
VIA THE NUESTRA SENORA TRAIL
0600 Assembly (Lawton beside Manila Post Office)
0630 ETD Manila, take Saulog Bus to Naic
0830 ETA Naic, Bayan, Take Jeep to Magallanes
0930 ETA Magallanes, Register at Police Station, take Tricycle to Barangay Ramirez
1030 ETA Brgy. Ramirez, register at Kon. Punongbayan’s House
1200 Start Trek
1230 ETA Ilog na Kayrayag
1330 Cross three segments of Bangkaan River; proceed to Nuestra Señora de la Paz
1430 ETA Kapihan Nipa Hut. There’s neaby Water Source
1530 ETA Campsite 1
1630 Reach Bamboo Forest
1730 ETA Campsite at base of Mt. Marami (option: Explore the summit)
1800 Pinch tent / Dinner
2100 Lights off
0530 Wake up / sunrise viewing
0730 Break camp
0800 Start descent
1030 Back at Kapihan nipa hut
1230 Back at jump-off point at Brgy. Ramirez
1300 Leave for Municipal Hall, then Naic via jeep
1400 ETA Naic. Take bus back to Manila
1700 Back in Manila.
Born to be wild