Disclaimer: All views expressed on this blog are my own based on my own experiences and do not represent of any entity with which I have been, are now or will be affiliated

August 02, 2022
Manila, Philippines

Date of Hike – July 24-25
Pulag, Ambangeg Trail Benguet, Philippines – Easy Route

I can’t even begin how to start my blog, I love the mountains! Climbing mountains make me feel so alive, it’s difficult, they don’t make you forget your problems but they give you courage to carry on.

Mt. Pulag is one of the mountains that I have been wanting to reach. Mount Pulag is at 2,928 meters (9,606 ft) above sea level making it Luzon’s highest peak and Philippines third highest mountain. It is also known as the playground of the Gods and famous for it’s sea of clouds.

Restrictions

Benguet is accepting leisure travelers provided that they follow the standard health protocol. No medical certificates, S-pass, RT-PCR test or vaccination card to be presented to some establishments or checkpoints. But I suggest to always bring your vaccination card and for your protection, have yourself vaccinated.

Budget

My budget for this trip is Php5,000. I booked a tour at Biyahe ni Jhayrick but was moved to another tour organizer which was Explore Unseen Travel PH as I was only a joiner. It was Php4,500 with Jhay’s tour but Explore Unseen was way much cheaper they only charge Php3,000 so I’d probably recommend Explore Unseen more than Biyahe ni Jhayrick for now. It was well organized. The tour was inclusive of homestay, 3 meals, environmental fees, LGU Fees and guide fees. Mt. Pulag requires you to submit medical certificate but they have a doctor to assist in the area, you just have to pay Php150 for the medical certificate.

Getting Around Mt. Pulag

We rented a van going to Mt. Pulag. It took us 8 hours to reach our destination.

There was less to no Internet Connection to where we stayed at which was great for a couple days so you can connect with the nature and the people around you.

Homestay

The homestay that we stayed at was spacious. There were 3 rooms good 10 pax each room. Good thing, I was only staying here for 1 night because I don’t think I can do this for 2 nights haha! It was fine, there were 2 toilets but gosh the water was so cold at 10 degree Celcius.

Language

People speak Tagalog, basic English and their dialect is Kankana-ey, Ibaloi, and Kalanguya.

Day 1 July 23
Greenfield, Shaw Boulevard

The meet up was around 9:30pm on a Saturday night, July 23. As usual, I went on a solo trip and joined tour and slept the whole trip. I loved that the van was so spacious that I was able to stretch my legs. I already know now where to sit during a long hour drive. haha

Day 2 July 24 – Sunday
DENR Bokod, Benguet

Mt, Pulag is part of the National Integrated Protected Areas Programme (NIPAP) so DENR registration and orientation is required. Mount Pulag has more than 500 species of plant, of which 251 are endemic to the Philippines. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) opens at 7:30am-8:00am and once they opened, we registered and watched a 10minute video. The capacity of the orientation is only at 120 persons and glad we were only 20 people that time, it’s good to book the hike on weekdays.

Day 3 July 25 – Monday
1:00am ascent

The call time was 1:00am when Christian, the organizer, prepared us for our ascent. The sky was clear so I was really happy that there will be a good clearing. We met Jane our tour guide. This hike was easy because there were not much hills to climb, it’s all straight line. At 3:00am though during the ascent, rain poured and I was so worried that my dream will not come true of seeing the clouds. There were a lot of fog and the rain kept pouring until we reached Camp 2 at 5:00am. The only good thing was the rain jacket that I bought in Decathlon helped me in the coldness and rain. We decided to move forward so we can reach the summit even though there was still rain. It was so foggy I almost lose hope going to view deck but thank goodness, the rain finally stopped, when I saw the stars, I knew it’s going to be a good day and Yes, we were lucky enough that the doors of the clouds opened up for us. The skies cleared and the sun slowly rose to greet us. It was so beautiful! I don’t want to sound so dramatic but this was the most beautiful sunrise I have ever seen. It was clear and hopeful. I could not fathom how happy I was to be in the playground of the Gods, the clouds were like a waterfall coming down from the mountains. The photos cannot justify how lovely the day was. I could sleep in the bed of clouds! haha

Food Eats in Baguio

Grumpy Joe
49 Gibraltar Baguio City, Philippines
Price Php200-500
Accepts cash or credit card

We reached our homestay by 9:00am and after we freshened up, we ate lunch. We wanted to try a restaurant in Baguio which was 3 hours away from Pulag – Grumpy Joe. We left Pulag by 1:30pm and passed by DENR to get our climbing certificates. We reached Grumpy Joe by 5:00pm and had an early dinner. I loved that they served fast, huge serving and price was affordable. The only downside was the toilet was not separate by gender, it’s hard to queue and the waiters and waitress were a bit grumpy just like the restaurant’s name haha. Overall, I had a good experience with my fellow hikers and new friends. I ordered hot ube truffle Php140 and lasagna Php285 I also had garlic and cheese pizza from my new friends. This restaurant is good for big groups like us but nothing still beats Good Eats for me.

We arrived in Manila by 11:00pm and had to fix my things for my Krabi trip. Woohoo! 🙂

Love,
Maria, sometimes, Niskie