CDO-Dahilayan 55k Ultramarathon

Thursday, 7 April 2011  |  Race Announcements

When will you join an ultramarathon? I can’t count anymore how many times I’ve been asked that question. And, honestly, I never felt compelled to give a specific race for an answer.

First of all, I’m not in a mad rush to reach ultra distance.  I’ve been quite fulfilled running my favorite 21ks and challenging myself with a 42k every now and then.  Secondly, I am a bit choosy about my first ultramarathon.  For the longest time now, I’ve had the following conditions for my first ultra:

1) Scenic and surrounded by nature
2) Off-road
3) Safe (traffic-free)
4) Fun (relaxed, nothing too serious, and among good friends)

I planned on shooting for my first ultra abroad, forever envious of Rick’s ultramarathon adventures.  But, after a brief trip to Cagayan de Oro City last Saturday where I was invited by Circle Productions to give an inspirational talk on running at SM CDO, I changed my mind…


Our hosts, Francis Velasquez and Jeffrey Ang of Circle Productions, are the organizers behind The CDO-Dahilayan 55k Trail Ultramarathon, which takes runners from Cagayan de Oro City to Bukidnon.


As soon as we arrived at CDO, they took us through the entire route of the ultramarathon starting from Rodelsa Circle in Cagayan de Oro City to Dahilayan Adventure Park in Bukidnon…

– The route is a mix of road and trail. It passes through the backroads of CDO to Bukidnon skipping major highways. Lots of trees along the course –

– I won’t lie to you. The course has a lot of climbs, but that shouldn’t scare any of us, right?  RIGHT?! –

– Vehicles are few and far between –

– Scenic route? Check! –

– Hardly any vehicles nor pollution on the route? Check! –

– Yes, we had to stop, ooh and aah over the route, and have a touristy shot taken. Lit, myself, Francis, and Jeffrey –

– Course passes through cornfields… –

– …and Del Monte’s pineapple fields –

– with Francis who I first met at Condura 2010. We were minutes away from each other after crossing the finish of our 42km. He recently finished BDM 102km –

– Aaack. I can’t wait to run on roads like this… –

– …and this! –

– Icing on top of the cake: the race ends at picturesque Dahilayan Adventure Park. Francis and wife Margie (TBR DM 2011 Finisher), myself, Cheryl and Jeffrey –

– Weather and atmosphere was very much like Baguio City. There are activities for the entire family from ziplining to a small zoo –

– Pinegrove Mountain Lodge is brand new and would be a great place to stay. KC Concepcion and Sam Milby stayed here a couple of weeks ago. Yes, I just had to share that bit of trivia –

– Right outside Pinegrove is the zipline rides which comes free with your CDO Dahilayan race fee. They have the longest zipline in Asia! –

– These are the brand new rooms for sharing. If you plan to stay here, reserve  ASAP. Limited rooms available. Details below –

– with Elpie Paras (2nd from left), owner of Pinegrove, after our presscon –


  • Event: CdO-Dahilayan 55K Trail UltraMarathon
  • Date: July 9, 2011
  • Assembly Time: 3:00 am
  • Gun Start: 4:00 am
  • Cut-Off Time: 12 hours
  • Distance: 55 kilometers
  • Starting Point: Rodelsa Circle, CdO
  • Finish Line: Dahilayan Adventure Park
  • Registration Fee: P2,000 inclusive of:
    • Free Zipline Ride
    • Carbo Loading Party on July 7, 2011
    • Finisher’s Jacket
    • Medal
    • Free Shuttle Ride from Dahilayan back to CdO
  • Registration starts on April 20, 2011. Early Bird Rate: P1,800 until May 31, 2011
  • Registration Centers:
    • Manila- A runner’s circle ph along Roxas Blvd
    • Cebu- Vivo Barefoot in Ayala Center Cebu
    • Cagayan de Oro- Max’s Restaurant CdO and La Cabana Spa
  • Accommodations: Pinegrove Mountain Lodge
    • Call 0922 880 1319
    • Family Room P5000 (6pax), Standard P2800 (2pax w/ free breakfast), Deluxe P3200 (3pax w/ free breakfast for 2pax), Extra bed P500


As with many things in life, I wasn’t looking for this one, but it just appeared out of nowhere. And, I think it’s the one!

So, after I viewed the route and before I left Dahilayan Park, I was 97% sure I was going to sign up for this as my first ultra. Then, I received a little surprise after our talk in SM. Francis and Jeff presented us with a little gift: a complimentary race pack for the Cdo-Dahilayan Ultramarathon. Thanks Circle Productions! It upped my decision to 98%!


– See the joy in my face?! Thanks to Margie for this photo –

As for the last 2%, I’m working on it…gotta get permission from the hubby and kids. Let’s see! For now, training shall commence anyway!  To my running buddies, expect me to bug you about joining this one.  It’s going to be great fun!