South Cotabato

Travel post mortem: Project Socsargen

By on September 27, 2011

socsargen - front page
Project Socsargen
brought me and my churchmates to 2 provinces (South Cotabato, Sarangani), 2 cities (Koronadal, General Santos) and 3 municipalities (Polomolok, Tboli and Glan) in South Central Mindanao or Region XII. If we had enough time and resources, we have probably included Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat in the itinerary which would then complete all the 4 provinces in the ‘SOCCSKSARGEN‘ acronym. This should explain why there are four letters missing in Project Socsargen.

I remember that I had no hand in the itinerary for this weekend adventure. Mhy and Mickey, my two good friends who hailed from this region, arranged everything for us. All I did was book promo flight tickets for us and pulled some strings to get us to the Kalsangi Clubhouse.

The ladies also took care of the transportation, which I think was really important in this trip. The destinations below are quite far apart and public transportation options are limited especially at Tboli and Glan. It was indeed helpful that we had a private vehicle that took us from one destination to the next. We only paid for the driver and the fuel.

Day 1
General Santos City – MSU-Gensan, Aweng’s Balbacuahan
Polomolok, South Cotabato – Kalsangi Clubhouse

Day 2-3
Tboli, South Cotabato – Lake Holon trek

Day 3-4
Glan, Sarangani –beach bumming at Glan
General Santos City – brief breakfast at a fastfood chain and wondered where Gen. Paulino Santos is pointing to

various poses at holon

Our Lake Holon trek was also very memorable for me since I bought a 30L backpack out of a cash incentive from my previous company.

Our main goal for Project Socsargen was Lake Holon/Mt. Parker. After being ‘baptized’ into the mountaineering world in Project Aerie or our previous weekend adventures in South Cotabato, we then aimed to see this beautiful lake. The other destinations were then sidetrips, so to speak.

I must also thank God then for blessing me with this opportunity to return to South Cotabato. Both the province and the region as a whole, still surprised me and I know that it will continue to do so. Aside from the 2 other provinces I have yet to explore, there are still many things that I’d like to do – ride an owong, trek to another waterfall at Sitio Kangko and visit the General Santos fishport, among many other things.

socsargen - group shots

I also wish then that this same adventurous group could make it to Mt. Matutum in an Amyak Maleh someday. I am not sure though as to when that would happen or if we could still pull off something like that again soon. Some of us have already married, a few have gained some pounds and there are also those who have relocated to other places, and countries even during the past few months. The good thing is that, we still kept in touch despite the many changes that took place after this trip.

Ladies and gentlemen, my brief Project Socsargen series ends with this post.

Post mortems like this would hopefully become a regular feature in Baktin Corporation. It is a simple review on a recent travel I have done – budget tips, off-beaten paths and to-do items later on. It is not comprehensive and may not be updated. There are other information you can get from travel blogs, government tourism portals and Local Government Unit websites. But you can start drafting your itinerary with this post as a reference.

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Brennan Mercado
The Philippines

Brennan is an electronics engineer by profession. From time to time, he gets to travel beyond his office cubicle, try new restaurants or catch up with his terribly long list of unread books. He likes museums, spicy food and talking with habal-habal drivers. For now, he's still deciding on whether to play Pokémon GO or not.

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