Life Lessons From White Water Rafting in Cagayan De Oro

Posted by Fitz Villafuerte under Inspirational, Life Lessons on February 2, 2011

I went to Cagayan De Oro last year and just like many of those who go there – summoned the courage to actually go white water rafting.

For those who don’t know where CDO is, it’s the provincial capital of Misamis Oriental, located in Northern Mindanao.

The City of Golden Friendship – Cagayan de Oro is a modern metropolis and the most popular destination in the Philippines for people who would like to experience white water rafting in the country.

It’s been a few months already since that trip and as I look back, I realized that the experience of white water rafting gave me more than just a rush of adrenalin – but taught me some valuable life lessons as well.

Be prepared and listen to the instructions.
White water rafting is an extreme sport and can be very dangerous. Just like how you really don’t know what could happen in your life, it’s always best to be properly equipped, physically and mentally, on how to handle the challenges that might come ahead.

It’s more fun if you do it with friends.
Paddling through the rocks and life’s obstacles are easier when you have trusted friends along your side. But more than having allies, you must also learn how to become part of a team. Learn how to lead, but don’t forget to be a good follower as well.

Keep your focus on the water, not on the rocks.
The boulders around can be quite scary, but the river current is what brings you there. Don’t waste your time worrying about hitting the rocks. Instead, dedicate your time and effort in navigating your raft through the water so you could avoid those obstacles.

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Hitting a rock isn’t so bad.
It’s Man vs Mother Nature and we all know who wins. And just like life’s problems, hitting a rock is not as bad as you might imagine it to be. With a little optimism and some perseverance, you can easily get back on the right track. So don’t be afraid of the bumps that life throws along your way.

Falling into the water isn’t so bad either.
The river water is actually brown and not “white”. There’s zero visibility under and who knows what lurks beneath. But when the rapids turn your raft over and you fall into the water, the best thing you could do is to stay calm, focused and wait for help to come. Just like some of life’s problems – you simply need to go through it and be patient; and it will eventually solve itself.

Smile, even if your back and shoulders are about to give up.
We were on the river for almost 4 hours, but we managed to enjoy every minute of it and smile whenever there’s someone with a camera around. Don’t take life so seriously, learn to have fun – rest and take a break to renew your spirit.

Don’t forget to enjoy the scenery.
After each rapid, look back and see the difficult path which you were able to successfully overcome. Congratulate yourself for a job well done then take the time to appreciate the beauty that now surrounds you. Life is an experience you need to consciously live. Focus on your destination, but remember to enjoy the journey.

How about you? Have you tried white water rafting? How was it? Do tell your story below because I’d like to hear about it.

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9 Responses to “Life Lessons From White Water Rafting in Cagayan De Oro”


  1. Micamyx says:

    I’ve been to CDO, but we failed to try the Water Rafting activity :/ Nice lessons here, Kuya Fitz! I want to try it out soon and i am hoping that i’d be able to do this with my close friends. 😀

  2. Dinah says:

    wow, looks like you had fun! and doing it with friends made it more exciting 😉 great lessons too!

  3. Kristel says:

    Wow, this is such a great adventure to do. I haven’t been to any part of Mindanao yet. This goes to my bucketlist. 😀

  4. yodz says:

    This is what I call – super nature adventure. I ALSO WANT TO TRY IT!!
    oooppsss, sorry, I’m actually shouting.
    But yes, I’ll include this one in my “must-try” barkada gig this year.
    How much is the budget? Any nearby hotel or lodging house there?

  5. Fitz says:

    Hi yodz, we went with Kagay. You can check out their services and rates on their website, http://www.cdorafting-map.com.

    As for the accommodation, you can just stay in the city proper. They have services that will take you to and fro the river. Enjoy and have fun!

  6. diwata says:

    Hi Fritz,

    This is my favorite one from your list:

    “Keep your focus on the water, not on the rocks.
    The boulders around can be quite scary, but the river current is what brings you there. Don’t waste your time worrying about hitting the rocks. Instead, dedicate your time and effort in navigating your raft through the water so you could avoid those obstacles.”

    Thank you!

  7. PinoyAdventurist says:

    white water kayaking in CDO separates men from the boys. check it from youtube search “kayak cagayan”

  8. Maia says:

    In every adventure, there is a lesson. It maybe hard sometimes but it is always going to be fun. Great article.!

  9. Jane Foster says:

    You should have this Fun ride once in your Lifetime. Rafting experience is indeed a great outdoor adventure.

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