Saturday, December 29, 2012


When I browse the internet, I always see other cities and their spectacular skylines and last December, I saw an amazing skyline of Valencia City captured from Musuan Peak. I said to myself "I should capture something like this of Malaybalay City - its own skyline!".

What is a skyline anyway? A skyline is the outline of a group of buildings or a mountain range seen against the sky. Skylines are very interesting to me because a city can be seen in semi aerial view and be photographed from a nearby mountain, a high roof or any other natural or artificial objects in which the city can be seen.

The skyline can be on a daytime perspective or a nighttime. What I really want is the nighttime view because it is the most unseen view of any place.

Although Malaybalay can be seen in the Two Trees with great perspective, its too far away and the buildings are too small. The lights are also dim (I had my blog post about the city lights from Two Trees on this blog. Read MALABALAY CITY NIGHT SHOTS ).

I'm looking for other vantage points and here's what I have in mind:

1. Mount Tralala
2. Gaisano Rooftop
3. Novo Rooftop
4. Sumpong View (the city as seen at the Bethel Baptist Hospital Area, photo below).

I'm calling this urge "THE SKYLINE PROJECT" which I'll execute on 2013. I'll be asking help and support from my co-bloggers and friends who knows different and great vantage points.

Hopefully I could get a great shot of Malaybalay City's skyline. i could also put it on Wikipedia to show beauty of the city.

THE SKYLINE PROJECT - the next big leap. Do you know any good vantage point/s?? Let me know.

Malaybalay City viewed near the Methodist Church in Sumpong. Much better view in the center of  the Sayre Highway but its dangerous due to vehicles passing by.
Malaybalay City, Bukidnon

Misa de Gallo in Malaybalay City

Its December 16!!!! The first day of the the much awaited "Misa de Gallo" or what others call "Simbang Gabi". This is a 9 day Pinoy tradition wherein Christians go to church every dawn from 16-24 in which we anticipate the coming birthday of JESUS CHRIST. The mass satrts at 4am and ends minutes before 6am.

As expected on the 1st day, seats were filled already by 3:30am! i have no choice but to sit at the back part of the church. It was not the position I like yet I'm determined to continue this leg.

People rushing to go out after the 1st day mass.

The San Isidro Cathedral.

People inside the cathedral at 3:30am.
I may not have completed the 9 mornings this year (I only went for 5 days),still I'm thankful that I reached that far. We should not go and complete the 9 mornings just for our long desired wish to come true, rather, we should go to anticipate and celebrate the birth of JESUS CHRIST.

Simbang Gabi 2012
San Isidro cathedral
Malaybalay City, Bukidnon

Christmas in Malaybalay's Air

While waiting for motorela fter work last December 12, a feeling just came in to me. I thought to myself "I should take pictures of the Bukidnon Provincial Capitol Christmas decorations". Without further actions, I immediately walked to the Capitol and capture some of the companies who displayed their creativity in the trees.

The entries of different companies for the province's "Light a Tree".
After taking shots in the Capitol, my feet suddenly delivered me to the City Plaza where it is also beckoned with Christmas decors.

The tall Christmas Tree in the center of the City Plaza.

Icons like this can be seen surrounding the Plaza.
Finally, I felt tired and drained from my photo walk. It was indeed unplanned but it was worth it. Christmas is finally in Malaybalay's vicinity. MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2013!!!

Christmas Photoshoot
Bukidnon Provincial Capitol Grounds and Malaybalay City Plaza
December 12, 2012 (12-12-12)

Trip to the Southernmost Barangay

Located almost 30 kilometers away from the Poblacion (City Center), Barangay Apo Macote is geographically the southernmost barangay of the City. Known to locals as "PoApz" and "Apo" (not to be confused with Lake Apo in the neighboring Valencia City),the barangay can be reached via the National Highway connecting Malaybalay City and the neighboring municipality of Cabanglasan. Below is the route leading to Apo Macote:

From City Terminal:
1. Take a bus ride going south. (e.g. Valencia, Kibawe, Kadingilan, Tacurong, Wao) [Jeepneys and multicabs going to the Upper Pulangi District or Cabanglasan are also options, but for out of Malaybalay travelers, I'll use the public utility bus as referrence.]
2. Stop at Barangay Aglayan. This barangay is the meeting point of the Highways leading to Lantapan (west) and Cabanglasan (east).
3. Take either a habal-habal ride, multicab or jeepney. (Note: always ask for directions to avoid getting lost.)

You will pass by 5 barangays namely Barangays Linabo, Violeta, Simaya, San Martin and Sinanglanan.

Barangay Apo Macote Administration Building
Last November 25, 2012, my friends and I went to Apo to taste the locals' delicacies as they celebrate their fiesta in honor of "Kristong Hari". We traveled on motorcycle, in which I drove one of them. It was a hand cracking drive as we traversed the unpaved road. We started driving at 9AM and after 1 hour, we finally reach Apo and the place is at the middle of its celebration. People come and go and anticipating for lunch which is still 2 hours away. I've never been back to this place for 6 years, mainly because of its distance and I still don't have time. The barangay is the home of one of my aunt and that's where our home court is.

While waiting for lunchtime, I asked permission from my aunt if I could go to see the mighty Pulangi River which is very near. But then my friends also want to go so we traveled another 3 kilometers on wheels until finally we reached the bridge connecting Brgy. Apo Macote and Brgy. San Isidro of Valencia City.

The bridge connecting Apo and San Isidro. The Pulangi serves as the boundry of both the barangays and of Malaybalay and Valencia Cities. However, this bridge was destroyed by Typhoon "Pablo" last December 4, 2012.

Barangay Apo Macote Welcome Marker.

Barangay San Isidro Welcome Marker.
It was a spectacular site. The mountains, the fields, the river, its just WOW! The picture below shows the Pulangi River in either side of the bridge.

The Pulangi River. (Facing north from the bridge.)

The Pulangi River. (Facing south from the bridge. Musuan Peak can be clearly seen from afar.)
After taking some rest and snapshots, we head back to Apo because we're already hungry and its almost noon. While on our way, I caught some images of the surrounding fields and mountains.

Mount Capistrano.
A road leading to Barangay Bangcud.

Another view of Mount Capistrano.
It was a fun day, full of food and laughter. Hopefully next year I could go back. Visit and explore BARANGAY APO MACOTE - Malaybalay's southernmost barangay.

Barangay Apo Macote Fiesta
November 25, 2012

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bukidnon State University installs its New RFID System

Bukidnon State University is a prestigious school in the Province of Bukidnon and also in Malaybalay City. Now that it entered its 5th year as a state university, the institution has planned out last 2007 a hi-tech system to monitor students' entry and exit and with that thought they have reached the idea of having the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) System. This system is a hi-tech process in which the students, personnel and faculty ID's will be read by a magnetic reader.

Metal detectors to monitor entry of metallic materials such as knives, guns and other things which can hurt or cause damage/s to the/an individual/s
As I went to Bukidnon State University last October 16, I had a chance to talk to the Head of the University Data Center and highly respected IT Officer Mr. Lemuel Mark Garcia to give me insights about the new system. Mr. Ramon Vincent Torres, a good friend and an instructor in BSU, came with me to also hear the great news this new system has to offer.

Mr. Garcia said that this system will be operational starting 2nd semester of School Year 2012-2013 although for students who still have their old ID's, they can still use them because it is not compulsory for them. But if one wants to avail the RFID, he/she has to get a reissuance slip and pay to the Cashier. Starting School Year 2013-2014, 1st year students will have RFIDs. The IDs of personnels and faculties are now RFIDs.

Mr. Garcia also cited that the system is still on its 1st phase. The system's 2nd phase will be an all-purpose ID which would allow a student to borrow book/s in the library, access his/her account, method of payment at the canteen and others (note: only inside the university campus.), pay tuition, etc. He also shared that its 3rd phase will be with the partnership with the leading telecommunications networks to enable a process which entails the process when a student enters the campus, the school will automatically send a message to the guardians/parents of that student to notify them that their son/daughter had entered school. He also shared an idea of using RFIDs on vehicles to monitor those entering in the school's premises.

The Main Gate which the RFID readers are installed.
Mr. Garcia also shared that the exit area will also be under the RFID system. Currently, the exit near Zeta Trading is under construction and I will return to picture it when it is finished. The gate near Bukidnon National High School is the temporary exit as of now.

LED Screen to display the faces of the person who entered the campus. Announcements will be displayed as screen savers.
I'm happy that my alumni university is now entering its modern age. With this RFID System, I'm hopeful that BSU will be a secured school and probably the most modern school in the province. Let us welcome the system with great pride and joy and this is to show that Bukidnon State University really is "A Special Place for Teaching and Learning"! Kudos BSU!!

Special Thanks to Sir Mark Garcia for entrusting me his knowledge and ideas about the university's new hi-tech system and also to Sir Ramon Torres for accompanying me.

Bukidnon State University's New RFID System
October 16, 2012
BSU Entrance Lobby
Malaybalay City, Bukidnon

Monday, October 1, 2012

More Facts About Malaybalay City

"The City in the Forest"
"Cool Weather, Warm People"

Number of Barangays: 46
Major Barangay: Poblacion (which is further divided into 11 barangays)
Income Classification: 1st Class Component City
Establishment (as a municipality): October 19, 1907
Cityhood: February 11, 1998 by virtue of Republic Act 8490
Population (2010): 153, 085

Malaybalay City is the capital and administrative center of the Province of Bukidnon. It is the first political unit of Bukidnon to become a city. It is bounded in the north by the Municipality of Impasug-ong, west by the Municipality of Lantapan, east by the Municipalities of Cabanglasan and La Paz (Agusan del Sur), and by the Municipality of San Fernando and Valencia City in the south.

The city has its official website which is which showcases everything about the city.

The city has an average elevation of 622 meters above sea level ( 2, 040.68 feet) and has a total land area of 108, 259 hectares (984.38 km²) - the 2nd largest political unit of the province after Impasug-ong. The highest point is at the city's jurisdiction of the Mt. Kitanglad Range National Park.

The city's 46 barangays are classified into 5 districts namely:


Map of Malaybalay City showing its districts.
North Highway (Green)
Poblacion (Violet)
South Highway (Yellow)
Upper Pulangi (Blue)
Basakan (Red)

Such districts are established to ease the administration of the huge city. The following list shows the barangays with their corresponding districts.

1. Barangay 1
2. Barangay 2
3. Barangay 3
4. Barangay 4
5. Barangay 5
6. Barangay 6
7. Barangay 7
8. Barangay 8
9. Barangay 9
10. Barangay 10
11. Barangay 11
12. Barangay Casisang
13. Barangay Sumpong

1. Barangay Can-ayan
2. Barangay Capitan Angel
3. Barangay Dalwangan
4. Barangay Imbayao
5. Barangay Kalasungay
6. Barangay Kibalabag
7. Barangay Manalog
8. Barangay Patpat

1. Barangay Aglayan
2. Barangay Bangcud
3. Barangay Cabangahan
4. Barangay Laguitas
5. Barangay Magsaysay
6. Barangay Mapayag
7. Barangay San Jose

1. Barangay Apo Macote
2. Barangay Linabo
3. Barangay Maligaya
4. Barangay Managok
5. Barangay Miglamin
6. Barangay San Martin
7. Barangay Santo NiƱo
8. Barangay Simaya
9. Barangay Sinanglanan
10. Barangay Violeta

1. Barangay Busdi
2. Barangay Caburacanan
3. Barangay Indalasa
4. Barangay Kulaman
5. Barangay Mapulo
6. Barangay Silae
7. Barangay St. Peter
8. Barangay Zamboanguita

Malaybalay's demography classifies 11 urban barangays, 7 urbanizing barangays and 28 rural barangays. These are:

  • Barangays 1- 11

  • Barangay Aglayan
  • Barangay Bangcud
  • Barangay Casisang
  • Barangay Kalasungay
  • Barangay Linabo
  • Barangay Managok
  • Barangay Sumpong
The rest are rural barangays.

Political Map of Malaybalay City showing its component barangays.

The Top 10 Largest Barangays of the City based on 2010 Census of Population are as follows:

1. Barangay Casisang - 22, 230
2. Barangay Sumpong - 8, 335
3. Barangay 9 - 7, 817
4. Barangay Kalasungay - 7, 456
5. Barangay Managok - 6, 719
6. Barangay Aglayan - 6, 205
7. Barangay Linabo - 6, 193
8. Barangay Dalwangan - 6, 112
9. Barangay San Jose - 5, 640
10. Barangay 1 - 4, 992

Malaybalay City is indeed a nice city. I have lived here ever since I was born. I love this city and I will always be proud of it. KUDOS MALAYBALAY CITY!

More Facts of Malaybalay City
Note: Own research and based also on the City's website
Come and Experience Malaybalay City!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Mt. Capistrano Dayhike

When I was a young lad, I have been wondering of the mountain far east of the Sayre Highway everytime I go to school, (I went to Bangcud Central Elementary School 1998-2000). When my father and I went to Liguangan Spring (previous post), I can also see the majestic mountain in the east.

When I knew that it was Mt. Capistrano,  started to dream on getting up its peak, but because of student life, my dream delayed and I forgot about it until my co-members of the Bukidnon Photographers and Bloggers Society planned to trek the mountain last September 22, 2012. I never had second thoughts despite the threats I've been hearing about it.

Mt. Capistrano (located at Barangays Managok and Simaya).

Mt. Capistrano has an average height of 2,000 feet (609.60 meters), more or less the same height as Musuan Peak (also known as Mt. Kalayo) and Palaopao Hills (located at Brgy. Kisolon, Sumilao, Bukidnon). A notable peak, Capistrano can be seen along the Sayre Highway from Brgy. Aglayan, Malaybalay City up to Brgy. Mailag, Valencia City. Although accessible, it is a bit away from the highway and one has to stop at Brgy. Aglayan and hit a habal-habal ride to get to Sitio Binalbagan, Brgy. Simaya - our jump-off site.

Mt. Capistrano viewed from its base at Sitio Binalbagan, Barangay Simaya.
My co-trekkers are very unusual since it will be my first time hanging out and explore with them, they are Sir Dax Abitona, a veteran hiker (according to my instincts hehehe), Maam Gwen Balahay, an employee from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Maam Krishaleen Tago, and the two "bang-giitans" as I say when it comes to adventures and mountain climbing, Sir Earl Bolivar, the owner of Pulagoy and Bukidnon Photo Journal - the first blogs I read and inspired me to write my own and explore out, and the fearless Sir Christopher "Tupe" Diaz, the owner of Trekero. Having them as my companions eases my nervousness and fear about climbing the mountain.

Our assembly place was at the City Terminal at around 6:30am. We hit a bus and reached Barangay Aglayan. Barangay Aglayan is a crossroad barangay because National Highways from Lantapan and Cabanglasan Towns met at Aglayan. It is one of the urbanizing barangays of the city and part of the South Highway District.

Barangay Aglayan.
We then hit a ride on the habal-habal which would lead us to Sitio Binalbagan, which is still far away. It was a fun ride especially the cool air racing towards me and the spectacular views from both directions. Our travel will pass Barangays Linabo, Violeta and Simaya. These 3 barangays are part of the BASAKAN DISTRICT which is one of the 5 Districts of Malaybalay City. This explains the wide array of rice and corn fields at any direction. We reach Sitio Binalbagan and went to the base of the mountain. We started ascending at approximately 7:30am.

The journey up. The surrounding grass serves as handles.
The trek starts with the stairs. It was a tiring part because you have to raise your feet in order to go higher. The stairs run for a few meters and the land trail begins. Fortunately, there are grass in either side which can be used to hold on to ensure balance. The views were spectacular because you can see wide rice fields and we're not on the top yet.

Sitio Binalbagan and the wide rice fields and the Kitanglad and Kalatungan Mountain Ranges in the background.
The trail was open and tree less for a while and I enjoyed the view and then came the trees. Although blocking the view, it had provided us shade and cool environment which eases my exhaustion but that was far from what the mini-forest has in store.

It has rained hard in Malaybalay in the past few days and the ground is wet. I depend on the grass, trees and roots for support but there is one point in the trail that is probably the hardest point in the trek because there are barely grasses and roots to hold on - good thing I had breakfast which gave me energy to go up. Maam Gwen, my companion, had given up on that part but Sir Tupe helped her because its a loss to stop there and not sseing the wonderful peak of Capistrano.

The hardest point of the trail.
After we have passed the "zero point" as I call it, rocks suddenly peeped out on the trail. We even pass some cool rock formations and cave-like structures. I expect to find a rocky peak but the rocky trail is beyond my expectations. Some rocks were sharp and some are forming mini-caves and deep ravines which a trekker should be careful with.

One of the cool mini caves along the trek.

The mini forest serves as the habitat of some interesting fauna and flora. The ones I can't forget are the big reddish-black ants, the blue fern and a mold colony in the tree.

The blue fern growing inside a rock crevasse.

A mold colony living in a tree's bark.
Finally, after almost 4 hours of ascending, we finally reached the rocky peak of Mt. Capistrano. We reached the peak by 11am. The view was awesome so are the rocks. Everywhere I look the views of ricefields and mountains took my breath away - how amazing God is!

Mt. Capistrano's peak and highest point.

The view of rice fields stretching from Barangay Laguitas, Malaybalay City to  Barangay Bagontaas, Valencia City (North-South) and from the Kitanglad and Kalatungan Mountain Ranges to Barangay Simaya, Malaybalay City (West-East).

View of Barangay Managok and the National Road leading to the Municipality of Cabanglasan and Upper Pulangi District of Malaybalay City.

Some rocks found at the peak.
My mind was blown away with the views. This mountain is a must visit for trekkers and even locals of Bukidnon. The rock formations, rice fields, high alluring mountains, huge rivers - the best view I've seen as of this moment. We had our lunch at the peak. We brought packed lunch and snacks to supply us with energy as we go head down.

As I view the rice fields at Valencia City, I noticed dark clouds and the City Proper could not be seen anymore. We have to trek down to avoid as much as possible the heavy rain. We started heading down at 12:30pm. We decided to take the trail we trekked upward for convenience.

The weather was still okay as of that moment but rain clouds starts to race northward towards us.

Rain clouds heading northwards towards us.
Unfortunately, the rain caught up and raindrops start to fall. Because of this, the trail became slippery, but because we really want to get down, we "slide" downwards at some points in the trail. Funny thing is I enjoyed "mountain sliding" and I slide down more often that standing up.

Descending Mt. Capistrano.
Finally!! After 1 hour of sliding and descending, we reached our starting point at Sitio Binalbagan. It was rainy but worth it, its nice to be wet in the rain after a nerve-racking trek.

We hit a "expanded habal-habal" as I call it back to Barangay Aglayan, but our adventure haven't stop there. Our ride unexpectedly cannot bear our weight. Because of that, me and Maam Gwen rode a habal-habal while Sirs Earl, Tupe and Dax remained in the ride.

We reached Aglayan and we decided to sip and eat especially the yummy and hot Bulalo at Jaslyn. Sir Tupe immediately went home to Pangantucan.

Jaslyn Seafoods & Bulalo - where we had our Bulalo moments.
Mount Capistrano trek was a very hard yet satisfying one. Finally I have realized my dream of reaching its peak and seeing its amazing sights that I have only seen through internet.

For avid mountaineers and adventure lovers, try MT. CAPISTRANO - a mountain worth climbing.

Although bring the following:
  1. Rope
  2. Packed Lunch
  3. Rain Gears
  4. Trail Foods/Snacks
  5. WATER
  6. Insect Repellent (optional)
  7. Sunblock (optional)
The trail at Sitio Binalbagan is a great trail - you will have 10-20% chance of getting lost.

Mount Capistrano Dayhike
September 22, 2012
Sitio Binalbagan, Barangay Simaya