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Geography & Climate

Oroquieta City is located in Northern Mindanao. Oroquieta City is the capital of the Province of Misamis Occidental. It is nestled in the northeastern region of the province where its coastal boundary is facing the Iligan Bay.

Map of Misamis Occidental

The geographical location of Oroquieta comprises of five different boundaries. To the north lies the municipality of Lopez Jaena, to the east is the open wide bay of Iligan City, down to the south is its sister town Aloran, facing to the southeast is the municipality of Conception, and then to the northwest is Sapang Dalaga. Its total geographical area is estimated 263,934 kilometers comprising almost 13% of the Northern Mindanao land area.

Map of the Philippines

Oroquieta has a very moderate, but changing climatic condition where rainfall is at appropriate level to suffice the much needed water for farmers to cultivate farms and grow crops. However, like most other regions of Mindanao, Oroquieta’s Hot Summer season, commonly called "Kuaresma" begins in January and lasts through the third week of April. Kuaresma also marks the yearly Christian observation of "Holy Week" - beginning with Ash Wednesday which usually falls in February, and and ends on Resurrection or Easter Sunday which usually falls during the last week of March or first week of April. This season's change is usually described by the old folks' common expressions "Kuaresma na" - meaning hot season and Christian's Holy Week observation. The peak of this hot season cycle is in March.

Fresh Libgos - August Delicacy

Following the Kuaresma season, a good amount of rainfall arrives resulting in mild temperature. Such mild temperature is evident by the arrival of the prevailing North Wind called "Amihan." The mild temperature usually appears during the last days of April through the month of June. This is the best season to plant rice and corn crops. The "Amihan" is also believed to be the main factor in the arrival of different species of fish and sea creatures. The squids called "Lumayagan" (an Oroquieta delicacy) arrive in high volume where fishermen enjoy to catch them and prepare in a special recipe called "Kilawin." Kilawin is the Filipino version of of the Japanese "Fish Sushi" except Kilawin is made from squid.

Libgos - August Delicacy

The rainy season comes around the last part of July or early August and lasts through the end of September. By this time, scarcity of food is experienced by the locals. Following the lengthy rainy downpour comes the prevailing South Wind called "Habagat" that are considered dangerous and treacherous because of its unpredictable turns. Some fishermen who dared to go out to sea have been reportedly lost during their quest for catch. The Habagat is usually associated with lightning and thunderstorm. On the contrary, this season also brings "good news" because of the sprouts of wild edible mushrooms called "Libgos". Libgos are used as vegetable delicacy by locals during this season. They sprout at early dawn on different days, especially in rural areas. Libgos must be harvested at early dawn before the worms come to enjoy their feast. After the break of the stormy weather, comes October the harvest month for all Filipino farmers.

Following the arrival of Habagat, the stormy season comes around the end of October and last through the end of January or early February where the prevailing East Wind called "Utaa" comes from the seaward direction. This is believed to be the "lean season" for fish. The fishermen are unable to do their regular chores in the sea due to treacherous big waves and strong winds.

Ging Mutia

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Saturday, April 19, 2003 (Revised)