I've heard you can't do it without a guide, how did you get a guide to agree to 14 hours?
I'm a trail runner, used to long slogs, and the idea that I have to go the speed of a guide is less than thrilling.
Also, which outfitter/tour company did you go with merengue? Or did you book it independently?
I'll end up by myself in Jarabacoa, plan on running the river and hiking the peak, hope to meet others there to share the cost and experience, but I will do it. One concern is that I have literally no gear (tent, sleeping bag, thermal wear, cook stove, etc.) but if I am able to go at MY speed, I hike 1000 meters elevation gain over 3 miles in about an hour on rough trail back home.
Additional thoughts and information is highly appreciated.