FAQs Unlimited

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are the frequently asked questions on joining AMCI and climbing in general. These are some of the most common concerns bugging a first-time climber and an applicant for that matter. Remember, there are no silly questions, only silly people.

Is it expensive to climb mountains?

Here's a breakdown of what you have to budget for (as of 2002):
Training Fee (BMC) - 2,500
First Aid Training - 500
Acquaintance Party - 700
Graduation Party - 500
Orienteering Weekend - 720
Climb 1 -
Climb 2 -
Climb 3 - 500
Climb 4 - 320
1st Induction Climb - 4,351 (airfare Air Phil Manila-Davao)
2nd Induction Climb - 1,650 (landtrip++ Mt. Pulag)

And of course, the transportation fare getting to and from the training venues, gasoline expense, food and drinks.
Personal gears and equipment like training attire (rubber shoes, cycling shorts, tshirts), climbing attire (jacket, raingear, trekking shoes, pants, shorts), backpack. If you want, you can buy your own tent, stove, trowel, cookset, first aid kit, etc.
And the biggest investment of all is your TIME.

What is it about TIME?

Again, if you don't have the TIME, the training is not for you. You'll just be wasting yours and the VOLUNTEER training commitee's time in trying to instill in you the necessary discipline of an AMCI mountaineer. The BMC schedule is provided during the orientation. In a nutshell, all your Wednesday nights and weekends are for AMCI training. So reserve your leaves (VL, SL, paternity, maternity, etc.) for that. Be forewarned that you may have to come to work late Thursday mornings. Mwehehe...

How physically fit should I be?

The training program was designed to make you fit. Runs and ramps are progressive to build your strength and endurance. Climbs are also designed with specific purposes: nature appreciation, high altitude, multi-day, river trekking, etc. We require you to submit a medical certificate stating your fitness prior to joining the training. There are also at least 4 Physical Fitness Assessments during the length of the training which times your runs, measures flexibility, and the number of push-ups and sit-ups you can do in 3 minutes. Believe us, you'll amaze yourself at the progress you'll be seeing!

Who are eligible to join?

AMCI is open to everybody. We accept applicants regardless of race, color, body weight, sexual preference, employment, and social status. Human, alien, animal, plant, rock. Would you believe we have a SHRUB for a member? Under 18yrs old, we require a parental consent. Oh, and we make you sign a waiver form.
Now, eligibility to be a MEMBER, that's another story. Check out the BMC rules and regulations.

On climbs, what about calls of nature? Is there a chance to take a bath?

There are no toilets out there. We improvise as much as we could with a strategic spot, a trowel or bolo, some tissue paper and a lot of imagination. We do impose certain guidelines due to environmental and gender considerations. We assure you that if you don't take a bath, it won't be taken against you. Just be sure to bring lots of alcohol (the drinking kind) for your pals so you can increase/decrease their level of hygiene tolerance.

Do I need to have climbed the mountain to be a Group Leader?

Preferably, YES. Usually, there is a recon climb before the actual training climb. All those who want to become group leaders for that climb are advised to do the recon so that they will be familiar with the trail, the rest stops, water sources, and the general feel of the climb (diskarte). On the other hand, anybody with good leadership skills can take their group even to unfamiliar places. It's all a matter of attitude and discipline.
And there is a matter of your closeness with the climb coordinator and staff.

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