Davao White Water Rafting Adventure: We Thought We Won’t Survive (Updated 2016)


Davao White Water Rafting Adventure: We Thought We Won’t Survive

our Davao White Water Rafting Adventure

Davao White Water Rafting Adventure: We Thought We Won’t Survive (Updated 2016)

November 1,  2011, our schedule for Davao White Water Rafting Adventure.

We woke up at 6:AM, prepare ourselves for the trip, ate our breakfast and  left the hotel at around 7:10AM.  We arrived at the assembly point, The  Crocodile Farm at around 7:30AM .It was quite early for the 8:00 AM assembly and 9 AM departure time. Well, we intended to take pictures of the crocodile farm before we go.

The Davao Wild Water Adventure Team is quite organize. The briefing was done  along with some video presentation.


Final instruction before the actual ride

The    trip from the crocodile farm to the jump off point is 1 hour. We have no choice but to talk to other people inside our transport vehicle. Here, I meet a Pastor having his vacation along with his wife (who opted not to go on rafting)  and 3 daughters . Inside our vehicle were   Chinese family (male and female siblings along with their mom) and of course the Happy Trippers . On the other vehicle were  13 Indian Gentlemen.

As soon as we arrived to our jump off point  we were given another orientation including the use of the life vest. Another briefing were done when we were distributed to our group rafts. We went  with the Chinese family. Of course we immediately occupied  the 2 front seats (we wanted to be visible for picture taking, huh! LOL).


Rescue drill

Before we go on final rafting we went through a simple drill in rescuing.  To my mind, “ ….I’ve been through this in Cagayan when I had my first rafting adventure.” Then , off we go…

Our group were the first to try the first rapids, followed by the raft of the Pastor and the kids. And in just  a few seconds we saw the Pastor and two of his kids fell into the water. I was alarmed looking at the facial expression of the kids, I’m sure they have the first taste of  Davao River Water.  We rescued them and brought them back to their   raft. To my mind ,” its part of the adventure!”


As we approach the second major rapids, our river guide Johnny informed us that we are about to experience the “Kiss the Wall” rapid. We will be the third raft to go. From afar   I saw the curve…it’s  quite tricky . The passage was quite small due to large rocks and the current was really strong. Few meters away  we were shouting– “were ready go! go! go!”, while Johnny were shouting “paddle….paddle hard!” We’re  getting very fast …and were a meter away… truly we will kiss the wall  hard…and bang! We bumped at the wall head on… and in just  a few second our raft capsized.

Click here to see the video

The water was raging… we were under the raft  for around 16 seconds. The water was dark and I can’t go out of the raft- its quite difficult to swim and get out of the raft when having a life jacket. I told myself not to panic stay inside for while and breath..I was reminded by the words of the guide, there’s air inside…

Huh, not this time the rapid was strong that even the inside part of the capsized raft was filled with water…there was a few seconds that I was able to breath through my mouth , but each time I would gasp for air I would also gulp water. I was trying to get  out , but some legs were kicking me back. We were all positioned to save ourselves…I started to panic…”am I going to die?” I started to get dizzy but finally find my way out…that’s the time that I hear our guide shouting “let go, let go  of the raft….defensive swimming!!!”


I saw others  were rescued already by the group of Indians. I was just thinking to just float for a while but a few meters away I saw a minor rapid so I swam towards the raft of the Indian guys who were already extending there hands to me. I feel  like vomiting as I am pulled inside the raft, maybe due to the waters I drunk.

It seemed like I’ve lost all my energy with that incident. While on the raft I saw my left hand  and right knee bleeding. But the pain on my hand  made me forgot that I was feeling dizzy.

After the incident we stop for a while to eat our lunch. The complimentary lunch was quite nice. We were served with pork chop, chicken curry and hardboiled egg, with tetra packed juice and water. I normally drink plenty of water but that time I didn’t even open my bottled water. It seemed like my stomach was so full.

The short lunch break we had was an opportunity for me to recover and to say a little prayer. I asked Him to removed any anxiety in my heart.. I simply wanted to enjoy the remaining part of the journey.

As we  go along, we passed by a fall which they call “Vanishing Fall”. We had another short stop over and had some picture taking.



 The Vanishing Falls

There are only 5 major Rapids in  our trip but they  were quite long, stronger  and exciting.

We’ve finally reached our final  destination and truly I just can’t enumerate all the happy and notable memories I had in this rafting adventure.

That was extreme indeed, but truly a HAPPY TRIP!

Thanks to the Davao White Water Adventure Team, Poluy and our River Guide, Johnny!

Click  here for more images of DAVAO WHITE RAFTING



The incident  reminded me once again that in anytime and place one can go. And because of this, I will:
  1. Love and be more forgiving
  2. Try more adventures and laugh the loudest
  3. Spend more time with people who loved me
  4. Go where I am celebrated
  5. Help  others whenever I can
  6. Write more blogs (I want people to remember all the Happy Trips  I’ve been through
  7. Try to be more productive
  8. Above all, do things that will give Glory to God!


(Reference: Davao Wild Water Adventure)

The Davao River is rated Class 3+ (to class 4 rapids)

Class III: Intermediate. “Wild Water definition: You will get wet!”

Rapids with moderate, irregular waves which may be difficult to avoid and which can swamp an open canoe. Complex maneuvers in fast current and good boat control in tight passages or around ledges are often required; large waves or strainers may be present but are easily avoided. Strong eddies and powerful current effects can be found, particularly on large-volume rivers. Scouting is advisable for inexperienced parties. Injuries while swimming are rare; self-rescue is usually easy but group assistance may be required to avoid long swims.

Class IV: Advanced. “Wild Water definition: You’ll get soaked, like a 9 or 10 on the “fun scale”!

Intense, powerful but predictable rapids requiring precise boat handling in turbulent water. Depending on the character of the river, it may feature large, unavoidable waves and holes or constricted passages demanding fast maneuvers under pressure. A fast, reliable eddy turn may be needed to initiate maneuvers, scout rapids, or rest. Rapids may require “must” moves above dangerous hazards. Scouting is necessary the first time down. Risk of injury to swimmers is moderate to high, and water conditions may make self-rescue difficult. Group assistance for rescue is often essential but requires practiced skills. A strong Eskimo roll is highly recommended.



Package rate 1700 each – Minimum of 5 per trip

Inclusive of:

Transportation (From Crocodile Park to Rafting Area and back)

Packed Lunch & Bottled Water
Use of Gears & Equipment
Raft Guide
Souvenir Shirt
Documentation disc (2 CD per group of 6)

(Note) Transfer to bonus facilities not inclusive.


800 am Assembly at Crocodile Park (gearing, safety talk)
930 am Departure to the River
1030 am Arrival at Put In area, Tamugan
1100 am Start of Rafting
1200 nn Lunch (resume paddling after)
300 pm Arrival at Take Out area, Purok 8, Lacson

(Run time on the river is about 3 to 4 hours including lunch and other stops)

330 pm Departure for Crocodile Park
430 pm Arrival at Crocodile Park

Please call
082 221 7823
0920 9546898
0920 9546897

note: trasnfer to ZIP CITY not included.




DAVAO: The King City of the South

PEOPLE’S PARK of DAVAO: Showcasing Davao’s Cultural Heritage


My Davao White Water Adventure: I Thought I Won’t Survive

Davao Crocodile Farm: A close encounter with the Park’s Superstars


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jojo vito

I am an entrepreneur, management consultant and artist who loves to travel and share my experiences with others. If you want your place to be featured, for partnerships and sponsorships, etc. - email me at jovito_intraspec@yahoo.com My Blogs: www.thehappytrip.com ;  www.toponmylist.com ; www.intraspectraining.wordpress.com www.jojovito.com 



  2. alejandrino m alguno jr

    my family ( 3 adults and 1 kid ) are planning to visit davao by end 0f ovcotber 2012
    we are planning to experience the river rafting
    pls email ur contact numbers and related contact info . we wish to call ur office.

  3. Femmy Lee A. Magbanua

    Wow Sir Jo, late comment, but i enjoy watching your pics and video….ka sadya…..ang facial expression mo baw sus ka preparado gid but daw ka funny gid ya kay daw kamo lang ang nag kulob bla, hahaha!!!!next time dapat upod ko sa adventure niyo nila Anton ah!!!!!

  4. btw… who,s taking all the pictures and videos? i presume its organized kay may dala nga cd documentation sa package fee… wonder lng paano and diin cla ga plastar? hehe…

  5. oh, my God… I saw the video… thank God ur both safe!

    wud love to try the raft myself too, though… aint it fun, jst lookng at all your pictures…
    nice after thoughts too, sir jo… life,s too short and tomorrow might not even come… so let,s better laugh it all out loud today…. HAHAHAHAHAHA!

    nice goin, take care happy trippers!

  6. Hi Jo, while reading your blog, I felt I was with you in the raft. What I fear most really happened to you. Raft capsized and you stayed under the raft for 16 seconds??? God, I would not survived it. I would have gone wild with panic.

    But thank God, you are all alive to tell the story. More adventures to come! Ingats

    • Hi Car,
      yes , in fact maybe it was more than 16 seconds, the video was cut off and i just assume its 16…But I praise God for always –He is in control….try mo man..hahaha.:) we tried zip line this AM, shorter than the one in Cagayan..:) Hope we can have our own longer zip line in Mambukal or Maybe in Salvador Benedicto or maybe maybe our own rafting adventure in Bago River,,,(just wishing..hehehe)

  7. Thanks Jackie, Salamat Jet…

  8. I felt the excited, the tension and the fun. Am glad you and Anton are okay. See you soon. 🙂

  9. Jackie Garcia Dizon

    Way to go, jojo! When life seems to go on hold, go back to nature & feel Gods presence!! Life happens when you get out of your box 😉

  10. Wow Jojo. Glad you went through it still alive and with a bunch to appreciate your mission in life. God still has something in store for you to accomplish. Thanks for sharing your life-captivating experience.

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