Reads | Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila Review

Day HIkes and Nature Walks by Gideon Lasco

“There is enough mountain to climb every weekend of the year and you wouldn’t be able to finish them all!” says Gideon Lasco during his much awaited launch of his first book, “Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila”. Gideon, a physician and medical anthropologist by profession, started climbing mountains since he was 8 years old. To date, he has climbed over 150 mountains in the Philippines, hiked in 20 countries spanning 6 continents, and scaled 3 of the 7 summits of the world. He was one of the pioneers of the website www.pinoymountaineer.com.

Gideon Lasco talks about his book and journeys
Gideon Lasco talks about his book and journeys

Day Hikes and Nature Walks From Manila Book

Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila” condenses the essentials for beginner mountaineers and outdoor enthusiasts who would love to get started in their adventures. It takes a lot of the materials from the website but strips them down to the bare essentials needed and adds a visual elements to make it more presentable. Gideon’s writing is straightforward and informative. It also gives you idea on how the trail is, the time, the itinerary, map and the level of difficulty. I like the “Level Up” portion where it gives readers option to take their climb difficulty up a notch.

The “Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila” is pocket sized at 4×6 inches and 1.4cm thick. Easy to carry around for actual travel. There are 22 destinations in the book divided into characteristics like Geologic Wonders, Waterforms, Open Trails and Woodlands just to name a few. Some of them are quite popular already but for newbies or foreigners, this would be a nifty guide in starting to explore areas around Manila.

TOC spread
TOC spread

How Near is “Near Manila”?

There are a lot of potential for future editions of the book. Gideon admits there are a lot more destinations to include for future editions. Possibly even regional editions from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Some people may ask, why buy the book when I can get the information online? For me, its concise presentation and essential details make it handy unlike blogs or narratives that makes some information more dramatic than needed.

There are rooms for improvement though. I wish Gideon had included distances of the destinations from Manila so people would know “How near is near?”. Basing on the farthest destination of Zambales, approximately 160km from Manila, that would be the sweet spot distance where people can do day hikes. I know the book includes travel time on the itinerary but all those are dependent on road conditions whereas distance remains constant. Another thing maybe would add some quotable quotes and personal notes in the pages. There were lots I heard from his talk during the launch. One which I like is this:

“Don’t be too caught up on reaching the summit. Stop to take a look around and enjoy the trails”

Open Trails and WOodlands spread
Open Trails and WOodlands spread

Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila is presented by Osprey Philippines, C.O.R.E (Center for Outdoor Recreation and Expedition) and Primer Group of Companies. The book is available at R.O.X (Recreational Outdoor Exchange) branches for Php 390.

Win a signed copy of Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila here. Simply follow the mechanics below:

  • Follow the instagram account @ferdziview
  • Look for the post related to Day Hikes and Nature Walks from Manila
  • Answer the question “Which mountains or nature walks would you like to visit near Manila?”
  • The winner would be selected through Random.org
  • Deadline for entries is on June 9, 2016 midnight.
  • The winner would be announced on June 10, 2016.
  • Only Philippine residents are allowed to join.
Map guides
Map guides

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