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Rain Averages 240 Days in a Year

I was searching for a 5-year period updated rainfall chart for Catanduanes because I needed one to support my decision to hold a project. A friend once told me, that our island was one time a trivia question on a popular T.V. noontime show, where rainfall averages 240 days in a year.

Bato mountain.

Here are some interesting facts I found online:

The southeastern portions of Luzon in Polillo and Catanduanes Islands have no dry season but do have a period of increased rainfall from May to January. Northwestern Luzon has two distinct seasons, being wet from May to October and dry November to April.


Catanduanes Tribune, 22 January 2009 report:

On the other hand, the Baras station recorded a maximum of 244 millimeters of rain during the period from 6 P.M. of Jan. 6 to 2:35 A.M. of Jan. 7 when a local thunderstorm caused flashfloods and landslides in Bato, Baras, San Miguel, Viga, Panganiban, Bagamanoc and Gigmoto. Virac had a much lesser volume of precipitation at 130 millimeters, but still higher than the monthly average of 65 mm and maximum of 120 mm for the entire island, Pantino added.

source: Typhoon Unding (2004):


There was an area of extreme rainfall measuring possibly 40 inches (1,000 mm) just east off the coast of southern Luzon. Much of southern Luzon and other portions of central Philippines received rainfall between 10 to 20 inches (510 mm). Catanduanes and extreme southeastern Luzon might have been blanketed in as much as 35 inches (890 mm) of rain though. Naga City only received a total of 8.26 inches (210 mm) of rainfall, but it was enough to flood some low-lying areas. The highest 24 hour rainfall amount from the Philippines was 246.4 mm at Catanduanes between midday the 15th and 16th. The passing of four cyclones in a short period of time as mentioned above caused a great deal of damage. Over 1,400 people either died or were missing, mostly from Winnie. Rainfall from all systems was extremely high.


CitiBank World Privileges:

One of the Philippines best surfing locations is Puraran Beach, on Catanduanes Island, in the Pacific Ocean just off Luzon. Its white sand beach has an unspoiled raw beauty, but strong currents breaking on the world-famous “Majestics” make it suitable for experienced surfers only.

Other white sand beaches close by include Mamangal Beach near San Andres town and Igang Beach. But be warned, Catanduanes is regularly hit by typhoons, and it has the highest annual rainfall in the Philippines.


The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission

satellite (known as TRMM) was placed into service in November of 1997. From its low-earth orbit, TRMM has been measuring rainfall over the global Tropics using a combination of passive microwave and active radar sensors. The TRMM-based, near-real time Multi- satellite Precipitation Analysis (MPA) at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center monitors rainfall over the global Tropics. MPA rainfall totals due to Durian are shown here for the period 24 November to 1 December 2006 for the Central Philippines. Rainfall totals exceeding 200 mm (~8 inches) are shown in red and extend from the western Philippine Sea across southern sections of Luzon, Catanduanes Island (northwestern most island shown), and northern Samar. Locally up to 18 inches of rain were reported in Albay province. Mayon volcano (2462 m) is also located in Albay province and is the Philippines' most active volcano. An eruption earlier in the year left the steep slopes covered with a large amount of volcanic ash. It was this combination of ash and the torrential rains from Durian that led to the massive mudslides that buried entire villages in the region.


Manila Bulletin Online:

Corregidor is an easy enough place to get to but what about a province like Catanduanes? It has rainfall 10 out of 12 months in a year and there are frequent landslides. But, oh, what a place.

Sidenote: People often go to a place like Catanduanes and say, "Wow, parang wala ka sa Pilipinas." That’s unfortunate. It simply means that this person hasn’t really gone around the country all that much and seems to have little appreciation for the actual diversity available in the country. Solution: Keep on exploring the Philippines. It’s a good thing being a tourist in your own country.

A place like this is so rich in photographic possibilities. The small town of Viga was hard to get to but in just less than two hours generated so many photos. Make sure you get shots of people (just ask their permission first, please) and, in the spirit of doing an essay, shoot even the things around them. What are they doing? What makes up their entire day, among others.


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