Tag Archives: Falls

Ithaca: Buttermilk Falls

Buttermilk Falls State Park is named after the foaming cascade formed by Buttermilk Creek as it flows down the steep valley side toward Cayuga Lake.  Unfortunately, I visited the park after it rained so the falls’ water wasn’t foamy white, but murky brown.

Buttermilk Falls (21)
Still, it’s a beautiful sight and the park is worth a visit when in Ithaca.  It’s especially popular among families as it has hiking trails, picnic areas and playing fields on the upper park and a campground, pools, and playing fields at the lower park.

Buttermilk Falls (7)
Our (or rather, my) discovery of the falls itself has a funny backstory.  You see, after our class in Cornell, my friend and I decided to go on a walk to the falls because a staff at the Country Inn & Suites mentioned that it’s nearby.  It wasn’t.

This is me making light of our (mis)adventure.  By then, we had been walking aimlessly for about 20 minutes.

Buttermilk Falls (1)
We were deliberating whether to turn back when we saw a sign that said the park is just round the corner, so we decided to continue on…

Aaand, finally, we reached the park.

Buttermilk Falls (3)
The above signage though, is misleading in a way because the falls wasn’t on this part of the park, but on the other side as I would find out the following day.

Still, my friend and I made the most of our visit by taking photos of the park itself.

Buttermilk Falls (6)
It was already late that we couldn’t see any staff to assist us.  We even thought this was Buttermilk Falls.

Buttermilk Falls (5)
Buttermilk Falls (2)
We didn’t linger as it was already early evening and we didn’t want to risk getting lost, especially in a foreign country and at the woods where anything can happen.

The following day, my friend had a class and since I was free, I decided to come back to the park.  I told my friend I’d find the falls so our trip wasn’t for naught.

This is the signage across the state park signage that we saw the day before.  If only we headed here, we would have seen the falls.

Buttermilk Falls (8)
My views as I followed the sound of the rushing water.

Buttermilk Falls (9)
I wasn’t disappointed.  Who would, with views like this.

Buttermilk Falls (10)
I bet this place looks lovelier come fall, with colorful trees framing this beautiful landscape.

More photos of the bridge, which is easily one of the park’s best features.

Buttermilk Falls (11)
Buttermilk Falls (12)
Buttermilk Falls (15)
Right after the bridge is the falls itself and this is my first view of it.

Buttermilk Falls (14)
Beautiful, despite the murky color.

I walked around and just loved the views and the sound of the rushing water was especially soothing.

Buttermilk Falls (13)
Afterwards, I decided to go on a hike and see more of the park.  Here are some of my views:

Buttermilk Falls (16)
Buttermilk Falls (17)
I found some interesting flora too and Google helped me identify the Common Yarrow (topmost, center) and the Orange Day Lily (middle, right).

Buttermilk Falls (31)
There were interesting plants too with”fruits.”

Buttermilk Falls (32)
Google identified the first photo on the left, topmost portion as Berry Forest.  I wasn’t familiar with the others so I’ll leave them unidentified.

When I headed back to the falls I saw earlier, I decided to use the trail by the falls, which afforded me better views like these.

Buttermilk Falls (18)
Aren’t the rock formations lovely?  Here’s a closer shot.

Buttermilk Falls (19)
I wasn’t wrong in choosing this particular trail because I got to see another falls (I found out while working on this post that there are 9 falls in this park).

Buttermilk Falls (22)
The main photo from this post was taken on the same spot.

Buttermilk Falls (23)
And these are my views as I neared the park’s entrance.

Buttermilk Falls (24)
Buttermilk Falls (25)
Buttermilk Falls (26)
After crossing the bridge from the last photo from above, I reached the same area where my friend I went to the day before and this signage was what held us back from exploring the park.

Buttermilk Falls (30)
Seriously, we thought there were bears roaming the park so we were very cautious, though I later found out that a bear was seen here only once, thus the name.

Here’s my view as I took Bear Trail.

Buttermilk Falls (27)
Farther was this view, but I did not dare venture beyond this point.

After my hike or rather, leisurely walk, this is me, muddy shoes and all.

Buttermilk Falls (29)
As usual, I’ll end this post with one of my favorite photos from this set.  I loved this photo because it’s like a vision from a faraway time.

Buttermilk Falls (20)
Buttermilk Falls is located in 112 E. Buttermilk Falls Road, Ithaca, New York.  Contact them via +607 273-5761 or visit the park’s official website.

Buttermilk Falls (4)

Teaser Post about my Trip to the US, June to July 2015

Monument Valley

a visit to Monument Valley – one of the highlights of my trip

My apologies, since it’s been almost two months since my last post and that’s because I went to the US for a month-long business and leisure trip.

Here’s what kept me occupied while I was away.

Cornell University
If you remember this post, you’ll remember how torn I was about taking my company’s offer of management training at Cornell’s School of Hospitality Management. I realized it was too good an offer to pass up so in late June, I revisited Cornell to study Strategic Leadership and New Media for Hospitality.

me in Cornell

the customary photo-op at the university’s entrance

In between classes, I took the time to rediscover Cornell.  Here’s a photo of Triphammer Falls, perhaps the campus’ most popular falls, with a 55-feet multiple cascading falls.

Triphammer Falls
Ever the flower lover, I fell in love with the university’s Botanical Gardens.  Here’s one of my favorite photos from there.

daisies worshiping the sun

daisies worshiping the sun

Isn’t it amazing?  Someone noticed me photographing flowers at odd angles and asked me what I was doing.  When I showed her some of my photos, she was amazed and later joined me in shooting flowers with the camera lens pointed at the sky.

Niagara Falls
The school organized this trip.  I missed this the last time since they offer this only once during the 4-week summer class.

me in Niagara Falls
Despite the cloudy and at some points rainy weather, I found Niagara amazing, though many shared that the best views of the falls are seen from Canada.  Hmm.  Someday.  🙂

Buttermilk Falls
The Falls takes its name from the foaming cascade formed by Buttermilk Creek as it flows down the steep valley side toward Cayuga Lake.

Buttermilk Falls
It’s been raining during our last week in Ithaca, so the water at the falls was a little murky.

New York
I was here only for 2 nights (the night before we left for Cornell and the night before we left for Washington DC).  Highlights of my stay here were my view of Manhattan’s nightscape on our first night and finally getting to sample Shake Shack (best burger ever!) on our last night.

NY nightscape
Washington DC
This was my first time in the country’s capital.  I had fun discovering the various attractions along the National Mall (my favorite would be the Smithsonian Castle).

me in DC

by the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, with the Washington Monument behind me

Too bad the United States Capitol was under renovation during our visit.

renovation is underway for the United States Capitol Dome

renovation is underway for the United States Capitol Dome

Just look at all those black cars and men in tuxedos.  No wonder being here made me feel as if I were transported to the pages of James Patterson’s Alex Cross novels, or to the shoot of popular TV shows 24 and Bones.

Reston, Virginia
We stayed here for 3 nights.  While our friend took classes at the Learning Tree, another friend and I had a gastronomic feast at the establishments along Reston Town Center.

me in Reston
We really didn’t explore Reston much since we opted to revisit Washington DC while here.

Massachusetts

Edgartown Lighthouse in Martha's Vineyard

Edgartown Lighthouse in Martha’s Vineyard

One of our friends lives in Falmouth so we stayed with her while in this state.  We visited Craigville Beach, Cape Cod, and  Martha’s Vineyard.

me in Martha's Vineyard
Las Vegas
Technically, we only slept here for 2 nights in preparation for our camping trip in Utah and Arizona.  We stayed at Stratosphere because it was our pick up and drop off points.  We did have the first night to stroll along the strip and again, we took the time to see Bellagio’s beautiful indoor garden (the theme this year was under the sea) and watch its dancing fountain.

Bellagio's Dancing Waters, with the Las Vegas nightscape as its backdrop

Bellagio’s Dancing Waters, with the Las Vegas nightscape as its backdrop

Utah and Arizona
We wanted to see the Grand Canyon and online, found Bindlestiff’s 3-day glamping that includes visits to Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, Monument Valley, and of course, the Grand Canyon.  While expensive at USD 595, it was worth it.  A trip of a lifetime indeed.

Zion National Park

Zion
This was our first stop.  Zion is Utah’s oldest national park known for its incredible canyons and spectacular views.

Bryce Canyon
Popular for its hoodoos, Bryce Canyon is actually not a canyon, but a collection of giant natural amphitheaters.  Pictured below is Thor’s Hammer that can be viewed only when one goes down a short hike from the topmost viewdeck.

Thor's Hammer
Lake Powell
me in Lake Powell

This is the US’s second largest man-made reservoir by maximum water capacity after Lake Mead.

Hoover Dam
Constructed between 1931 and 1936, Hoover Dam was once known as Boulder Dam and is located on the border between Arizona and Nevada.

Hoover Dam
Antelope Canyon
Located on Navajo land east of Page, Arizona, Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon with two separate, photogenic slot canyon sections namely Upper Antelope Canyon or The Crack; and Antelope Canyon or The Corkscrew.

the wave

the wave

This was my favorite part of our trip because I was amazed at the beautiful colors of the walls, which range from light to golden-yellow, and orange to red orange, with the occasional glint of purple here and there.

me on Antelope Canyon
Monument Valley
Known for its cluster of vast sandstone buttes, Monument Valley became popular after it was featured in many forms of media.

Monument Valley's West Mitten Butte

Monument Valley’s West Butte

We drove around the valley, which made me appreciate it beyond what I’ve seen on American West-themed movies.

Monument Valley 03
I loved the valley’s vivid red color and the buttes rising above the landscape.

me in Monument Valley
We camped here for the night and the following morning, woke up to this beautiful sunrise.

sunrise at Monument Valley
Beautiful, isn’t it?

Grand Canyon
Who needs an introduction to the Grand Canyon, one of America’s most iconic natural attractions?

Colorado River flows  through the Grand Canyon

Colorado River flows through the Grand Canyon

This was the highlight of our trip made more memorable when I signed up for a helicopter tour of the canyons.  The above photo was taken mid-flight and while I got scared whenever the helicopter made sudden turns, the views made everything worth it.

Too bad the weather turned dreary at the end of our helicopter ride and during the remaining hours of our stay there.

before the rain

before the rain

Here’s a collage of photos from my visit to Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Monument Valley.

me at Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Grand Canyon

me at Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Grand Canyon

Route 66
On our way back to Las Vegas, we stopped by the historic Route 66.  Introduced to my generation via the Disney movie Cars, Route 66, also known as Will Rogers Highway, became one of the most famous roads in America.  It originally ran from Chicago, IL through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending at Santa Monica, CA.

Route 66
Not only did we stop by here, we also got to dine at Delgadillo’s Snow Caps, a historic eatery and roadside attraction along Route 66.

Disneyland
We capped off our 2015 visit to the US with a visit to the happiest place on earth – Disneyland!

me in Disney
Disneyland in Anaheim, Los Angeles was celebrating its 60th anniversary this year and we felt lucky to be there.  Highlights of my visit included a ride to the Pirates of the Caribbean and Soarin’, and my Star Tours 3D, motion-simulated flight.   We also stayed until nighttime to experience World of Color.

And thus was how my recent visit to the US went.  More photos on my detailed blog per attraction soon!

Samboan: Aguinid Falls

Aguinid 05

Samboan has several waterfalls and Aguinid is undoubtedly the most popular among them. This was our last destination when we decided to do falls hopping in Samboan for a day.

Among Dao, Binalayan, and Aguinid Falls, the 5-tier Aguinid Falls is the most accessible. It is a mere 5-minute walk from the main road and unlike the path in the other 2 falls, Aguinid’s is already paved. Don’t let this fool you, though as Aguinid also happens to be the most difficult to conquer among the three.

Entrance fee is Php 40, but locals are extended 50% discount.

Aguinid 16

Just look at the quote. It speaks of the purpose of my going to Samboan, which is to reconnect with nature to recharge myself.

As mentioned, Aguinid Falls has 5 tiers, though they started the count at 0 so technically, there are 6 tiers. Level 0 features mini-waterfalls, earth rock formations, bamboo bridge, lagoon for adults, and water cascades.

Aguinid 15

It was a holiday when we came here so there were a lot of people.

Aguinid 02

Again, get ready to get wet because to get to the higher levels, you have to wade into the water.

Aguinid 01

Level 1 has falls higher than what’s on Level 0, rock formations, a selfie deck and shallow river pool for kids.

Aguinid 14

I didn’t get to discover where the selfie deck is located because I was too busy trying to keep myself alive. Seriously, why would anyone take a selfie here when there’s the danger of slipping, or bumping into anyone?

Going up, I was amazed at how this courageous kid was having so much fun jumping off the rock formation, while most didn’t event dare proceed to the higher level.

Aguinid 03

At the bend after the above photo was taken, I saw this Climbing Do’s and Don’ts. It wasn’t displayed prominently though, so others just ignored it.

Aguinid 04

Level 2 features cave-like formations and the waterfall wall climbing challenge, which was the most difficult part of our entire climb of Aguinid since it required climbing a steep limestone wall.

Aguinid 13

While the locals did create small “wall cavities” through the limestone where we could anchor our hands and feet on, the rushing water made them difficult to find.  To ensure everyone’s safety, they limited the number of persons who did the wall climbing and they did it one person at a time.

It was actually scarier to wait because I kept on hearing people voicing their fears and it didn’t help that our driver guide backed out. I almost joined him, but Alex, our other guide said the experience would be worth it.

Aaand finally, I made it. Too bad I had no photos since I didn’t have a waterproof camera and Alex carried my waterproof bag with my camera and phones in it (the purple one in the succeeding photo, which was taken after we conquered Level 2).

Aguinid 06

Level 3 was beautiful. The main photo from this blog was taken at Level 3, which features waterfalls and earth rock formations, a selfie deck (no wonder there was heavy traffic because people kept on taking selfies), and water cascades.

Aguinid 12

Here’s a photo of Level 3’s water cascades.

Aguinid 10

Right after this is Level 4, with its divided waterfalls and deep lagoon.

Aguinid 11

Here’s my favorite photo of the deep lagoon.

A few meters from here is Level 5. We thought that when we arrived here, there would be fewer people, but we were mistaken. There were many!

Aguinid 07

While here, I kept on looking for a signage similar to what’s on the previous levels, but there was none. I voiced it out to my friend and a local guide heard me so he explained that it got washed away during a recent typhoon and they were yet to replace it.

My friend and I thought that we would have our moment underneath Level 5’s rock formation and water cascades, but there were just too many people coming in so we decided to just head back since we’re so tired anyway.

Here’s my parting shot of Level 5’s water cascade.

Aguinid 08

The climb down Level 0 was again a little challenging, especially going down from Level 3 to Level 2. Thankfully, there were local guides who would tell us where to place our feet and/or hands while clambering down, so we made it down safely.

A tip to those who wish to explore Samboan. Do not start your itinerary by going to Aguinid. The climb here was so physically draining that afterwards, we opted to go home and rest. If we came here first, we’re sure we would have skipped Dao and Binalayan.

In closing, Aguinid Falls is beautiful, but it’s too crowded for me. I wish the local government would start implementing a carrying capacity for all its falls so that they don’t get crowded and they can be preserved for future generations.

Samboan: Binalayan Falls

After visiting Samboan’s Dao Falls, we headed to Binalayan Falls, which is also called Hidden Falls and Triple Drop Falls.

It’s easy to see why they called it Triple Drop.

{"draw":{"layers_used":0,"total_draw_actions":0},"uid":"527ceb41-ab1f-4d3f-9c89-37c9855fc1c9","total_effects_time":17248,"photos_added":0,"total_editor_actions":{"lensflare":0,"text":0,"callout":0,"frame":0,"shape_mask":0,"clipart":0,"sticker":0,"mask":0,"border":0},"total_drawing_time":0,"effects_applied":1,"total_effects_actions":3,"tools_used":{"enhance":0,"clone":0,"adjust":0,"stretch":0,"shape_crop":0,"flip_rotate":0,"motion":0,"free_crop":0,"resize":0,"curves":0,"selection":0,"crop":0},"from":"gallery","total_editor_time":7007}

This was easier to conquer than Dao, and the trekking time was also shorter (about 15 minutes).

After my friend paid the entrance fee of only Php 10 per person, we headed to the falls.

This coconut plantation was located at the bend right after where we paid the fees.

Binalayan 01

Again, get ready to get wet because to get to the falls, you have to cross about 2-3 streams.

{"draw":{"layers_used":0,"total_draw_actions":0},"uid":"013601fb-b434-4333-a56d-2da3223244af","total_effects_time":14500,"photos_added":0,"total_editor_actions":{"lensflare":0,"text":0,"callout":0,"frame":0,"shape_mask":0,"clipart":0,"sticker":0,"mask":0,"border":0},"total_drawing_time":0,"effects_applied":1,"total_effects_actions":3,"tools_used":{"enhance":0,"clone":0,"adjust":0,"stretch":0,"shape_crop":0,"flip_rotate":0,"motion":0,"free_crop":0,"resize":0,"curves":0,"selection":0,"crop":0},"from":"gallery","total_editor_time":3031}

{"draw":{"layers_used":0,"total_draw_actions":0},"uid":"4f87d8b4-42b6-4493-aa88-b8a14267548a","total_effects_time":47619,"photos_added":0,"total_editor_actions":{"lensflare":0,"text":0,"callout":0,"frame":0,"shape_mask":0,"clipart":0,"sticker":0,"mask":0,"border":0},"total_drawing_time":0,"effects_applied":1,"total_effects_actions":10,"tools_used":{"enhance":0,"clone":0,"adjust":0,"stretch":0,"shape_crop":0,"flip_rotate":0,"motion":0,"free_crop":0,"resize":0,"curves":0,"selection":0,"crop":0},"from":"gallery","total_editor_time":3389}

The falls has 2 drops, and this was my first glimpse of its first drop.

Binalayan 17

Its waters flow straight into this stream surrounded with palm trees, ferns, and some other flora that I couldn’t identify.

Because we were tired from our walk, we spent some time at the swings by the stream. Here’s a photo of our guide Alex, at the tandem swing.

Binalayan 02

In front of this were these individual swings made of old tires.

Binalayan 03

After our short rest, we continued our trek up the falls.

At the first drop, we passed by these children.

Binalayan 04

This is a close up of the first drop, which honestly wasn’t that impressive.

{"draw":{"layers_used":0,"total_draw_actions":0},"total_effects_time":16336,"photos_added":0,"total_editor_actions":{"lensflare":0,"text":0,"callout":0,"frame":0,"shape_mask":0,"clipart":0,"sticker":0,"mask":0,"border":0},"total_drawing_time":0,"effects_applied":1,"total_effects_actions":1,"tools_used":{"enhance":0,"clone":0,"adjust":0,"stretch":0,"shape_crop":0,"flip_rotate":0,"motion":0,"free_crop":0,"resize":0,"curves":0,"selection":0,"crop":0},"msource":{"from":"gallery"},"total_editor_time":2387}

A short trek from there was the grand second drop. 47 feet of waterfalls in 3 streams thus the name, Triple Drop.

Isn’t it beautiful?

I loved the lush greenery surrounding the falls’ base and the contrast of the water against the stone.

While its basin is smaller than Dao’s, I actually find Binalayan/Hidden/Triple Drop falls prettier than Dao because of its unspoiled look.

Binalayan 12
The water was also cool to swim in, though one has to be careful when swimming here because the pool seemed shallow one moment, but when you walk around, would have sudden drops.

Here are more photos of this beautiful falls at different vantage points.

The above was taken by the walkway while the photo below was taken at the center of the stream.  I decided to cut the stream of water on the succeeding photo to focus on the canopy of trees at the falls’ base.

We had the falls to ourselves for about 15 minutes before a family arrived. By then, we were shivering from the cold, so we decided head back.

Binalayan 07

Oh, before I forget, here’s a collage of my photos at Binalayan Falls. I had more, but since my friend who took them using her camera still hasn’t uploaded them, I had to make do with whatever’s on my camera.

Binalayan 21

Before trekking back, we again took a short rest by the stream. By this time, more visitors had arrived and all the swings were occupied.
Binalayan 20

On the way back, we again passed by the same coconut plantation that we saw earlier.

Binalayan 22

Here’s my favorite photo of coconuts.  This became my favorite because of the way the trees looked tall, dainty and graceful in this photo.

Binalayan 05
We met this cute dog too.

Binalayan 06

At the entrance, we passed by the fall’s signage, which had a photo of a dog swimming at the stream. The dog looked similar to the one we met by the coconut plantation.

Binalayan 23

Binalayan Falls is located in Barangay Bonbon in Tangbo, Samboan, Cebu.

Samboan: Waking Up to the Sunrise of the South + a Teaser Photo of Dao Falls

We had a long weekend last week so my friend and I decided to go falls-hopping in Samboan, a fifth class municipality about 150 kilometers south of Cebu City.

We arrived at the South Bus terminal at around 1 AM for our 2 AM Ceres bus, but to our dismay, the bus did not arrive until 3:30 AM.  By then, another bus company, Sunrays, had arrived.  Despite Sunray’s non-aircon bus, we opted to take it since it was a direct trip to Samboan (Ceres was via Barili).

Because we were exhausted from work and all the waiting, we slept the whole duration of our trip.  I only woke up when I felt the first rays of sunshine on my face.

Here’s my first view of that day’s sunrise.

Samboan Sunrise 01
As the bus cruised along the highway, I relished the feel of the summer breeze on my face.  This is actually why I prefer to ride non-air-con buses during trips to provinces – it’s nice to inhale air that is devoid of pollution and smog.

Another reason why I prefer taking non-air-con buses on provincial trips is that on them, I can snap photos anytime.  (Most air-conditioned buses have immovable windows that prevent me from taking really good shots of the scenery before me.)

image
Too bad I couldn’t will the bus to stop anytime to take photos, so some of my shots were either blurry or skewed.  Good thing it’s now easy to straighten photos.

image
Here’s a photo that I had to crop because there was a signage by the breakwater that ruined my composition.

Samboan Sunrise 01
Here’s another one.

I love how the clouds looked fluffy.  Too bad I had to again crop this since the signage is right underneath the sun.

image
If I’m not mistaken, we were in Boljoon when I chanced on the above.

From Boljoon to Oslob, I kept on snapping photos in between snacking on the sandwiches I brought with me.

Here’s  one of my better photos from this set.

image

I love how the coconuts and trees framed the sunrise on the above photo.

On this photo, the fluffy clouds again made an appearance.
image
This is another photo of the same scenery, but this time, I zoomed in for a closer shot.

image
Morning had broken, and everything looked so serene.

Here’s another favorite because the plants again nicely framed the sunrise and clouds.

image
Up next is my blog about Dao Falls, the tallest waterfall in Samboan with a 90-foot vertical drop of water.

Here’s a teaser photo.

Dao Falls
Till next!