Heaven's Hole : Lapus-lapus Cave.
It's puzzling to me why the locals living at the foot of the mountain had always reminded us to tread carefully in the mountains of Mabuli (the majestic rolling mountains of my town). They believed the mountain could swallow you whole and drag you underground. Scary. . . May it be truth or just tales, these warnings ignite a stronger desire within me to to traverse the mountainous landscape.
Their words only fueled my curiosity and determination. So one day, I found myself together with my hiking buddies eagerly and curiously hiking through the mountains, filled with anticipation to uncover the mountain's hidden secrets. I believe, despite the warnings? tales? lies a "wonder" that awaits to be seen.
And so today, I'm sharing the wonder I discovered beneath the mountains of Mabuli that answered my curiosity and left us in awe.
*Let's Go! Taraaaa!
The last time we ventured into the mountains of Mabuli our thirst for adventure and amazement didn't only stop at the Cave of Dose Kwartus, instead, we continued and searched for more. I know that my enthusiasm was not only about discovering and exploring the vibrant mountain but also about a burning curiosity to unravel the mystery behind the locals' cryptic warning: 'Beware of the mountain's holes, It will eat you.' What could those holes possibly be?"
The lush foliage that we passed by and the crisp mountain breeze beneath the trees allowed me to momentarily set aside my curiosity. I just let myself enjoy and surrendered the green and relaxing scenery with every step I took on our hike.
I asked the kid, our guide, about the holes, and he confirmed it and even added that his parents and other adults in the community knew about the holes which they call "bito" in our dialect or sinkholes. If these sinkholes indeed existed, where were they now? How could they coexist within a mountain composed of solid rock beneath its surface?"
I must admit, pondering these mysteries started to feel more exhausting than navigating the challenging terrain itself! Haha
It's the Lapus-lapus Cave!
I couldn't deny that one of the most memorable and jaw-dropping adventures I have had in Mabuli was discovering the Lapus-lapus Cave. Lapus-lapus means interconnected holes. As the name suggests one could imagine a cave with plenty of holes in it. One could enter and exit the cave from one hole to another.
When our young guide told us about the cave, we excitedly embarked on this journey never expecting the breathtaking sight that awaited us.
IMG20230805104321.jpg To the Cave we go!
I honestly couldn't get and imagine the location or position of the cave. All I remember was, that we were walking on top of the mountain under the scorching heat of the sun, and then our young guide made a turn leading us to another lush foliage and later on we entered a huge arc of boulders or a tunnel. We passed through it.
We then passed on the side of the mountain that was almost invaded by this species of bamboo that climbed like a vine. The boulders on my right side are huge (or was this the mountain itself) and on my left are the lush trees, if my visuals and imagination were right, we were at the side of the mountain. This part of the trek fueled my excitement to finally see Lapus-lapus Cave!
Viola! Finally, the Cave's gate!
Upon entering the cave, I was awestruck by its massive entrance. It is a square in shape. It was enormous and perfectly formed.
As I stood at the entrance, I was speechless as I walked slowly inside the giant cave in front of my eyes adorned with numerous openings! My gaze darted around, uncertain of where to settle, for the entire place looked majestic!
However, what truly captivated my attention was the colossal hole at the top, revealing a lush world of trees and vibrant vegetation growing above the cave. I was looking upward unbelievably staring at the paradise above. This is heaven in the color of green!
From high above, I could see the trees peering into the depths of the cave. To me, this view felt like paradise, and I couldn't help but be captivated by the sheer beauty of it all.
Ecosystem Above and below.
Right beneath the almost otherworldly opening, I was greeted by the vibrant ecosystem of flourishing green plants. I could witness the lush plant life thriving, forming a truly unique and self-sustained ecosystem.
The sight of verdant vegetation both above and within the cave was truly breathtaking, a testament to the harmonious coexistence of two worlds – one above and one below, - one above me and one right in front of me.😍
I roamed around my eyes in this cave which I think 10 average sizes of houses could fit in! There's one tiny hole that the root of a Balete tree from above extended down below. It was a long root trying to find the ground. My friend, Sir Kim tried to climb the root and so did I.
Not only did I see two holes in the cave, but many of them. Some were still very tiny, while some were created by the birds for their nest!
Do you think, that hole above is one of the sinkholes?
The air was remarkably fresh coming from one hole to another, and I couldn't fathom how such a massive cave could exist underground in the heart of the mountain!
We took a seat, savoring the breathtaking view and the tranquil atmosphere inside the cave. As I gazed at the openings above, a sobering thought crossed my mind: What if some unsuspecting travelers were walking above us and failed to notice these holes? What possibly worse will happen to them? They will definitely fall into the deep cave with no one will see!
No one will see? Just like being devoured by the very ground beneath their feet, with no one to witness their sudden plunge into the depths. Ting!* I think I knew the answers to my curiosity a while ago knowing that this mountain of Mabuli lies beneath the abundance of its caves with numerous holes.
What do you think? Are you thinking what I'm thinking?🤔
That's it for my interesting adventure to Lapus-lapus Cave. Thank you so much for reading. I hope you enjoyed it. I wish you all safe and well always.
Don't forget to smile often.😍😊🤗