Lost Ateneo mountaineers rescued in Laguna

By Arnell Ozaeta, ABS-CBN Southern Tagalog

Posted at May 29 2009 03:43 PM | Updated as of May 30 2009 09:15 AM

Police on Friday rescued five members of the Ateneo Mountaineering Club, who got lost inside a dense mountain in Batangas for two days.

Senior Superintendent Jesus Gatchalian, Batangas police director, identified the mountaineers as Jerome Cortez, Ike Dimacali, Abigail Lopez, Cecille Songco and Ariel Macatulad.
Gatchalian said the mountaineers started to climb Mt. Malarayat in Barangay Talisay, Lipa City last Wednesday morning with a guide. Upon reaching the boundary of Lipa-San Pablo trail, the guide left the group in the area as agreed upon.
“Sabi ng guide hanggang Wednesday evening lang ang bayad sa kanya kaya iniwan na niya ang grupo sa may boundary” Gatchalian said.
Gatchalian said the mountaineers, mostly teenagers except from their leader, continued the climb even without the guide until they got lost on Thursday afternoon.
According to the victims, they were able to send text messages to their co-mountaineers in Ateneo and informed them that they were lost. Their fellow moutaineers sought the police's help.

“ Buti nalang nakapag-send pa sila ng distress call bago na lowbatt ang lahat ng kanilang cellphone” Gatchalian said.
The mountaineers were found around 7 a.m. near Barangay Atisan, San Pablo City in Laguna province.