Last March, I finally made one of my hiking dreams come true. I woke up at 12 midnight and joined Justin and the rest of our group on a midnight trek for a chance to see Mt. Pulag’s famous sea of clouds and sunrise scenery in person.
Last Sunday, I finally made it to Gulugod Baboy, a picturesque 525+ MASL hill located in Anilao, Mabini, Batangas. A huge raincloud threatened the whole hike, but it dispersed when we got to the jump-off point.
I said finally because Justin and I already made plans to go to Gulugod Baboy last month, but because of our laziness, we ditched the plan and just opted to stay in bed and order takeout (because why not!) Luckily we were a little motivated to actually do this hike this time around as it’s the first climb of the year and we’ll be with other people. We originally invited three other people to come with us but two of them cancelled and so we’re stuck with Jerson, the dakilang third wheel.
Am I the only one who finds it alarming that we’re constantly being ditched by our friends? Are we not fun to be with??? Anyway, moving on.
(This was originally posted on 5/2/2015 on my old Tumblr account.)
From Coastal Road, when the sun is just low enough and the afternoon sky clear, you can make out the shadow of the massive Mt. Mariveles across the bay. It’s huge, it’s intimidating, and it’s beautiful. A major climb, most hikers go there to set up camp and watch the glorious sun rise and set from one of its peaks. On its west face is the popular Tarak Ridge, a thousand meters above sea level. From there, you can see Corregidor Island, and if you look hard enough, the other side of the bay.
Justin and I were supposed to go to Tarak last January, but because of warnings and the fact that we were so unprepared, we decided it was best to reschedule. April 11 was perfect; the day hike to Tarak Ridge became some sort of an anniversary climb for us.
To commemorate my first year of climbing mountains, I decided to go on an easy hike to Manabu Peak with my boyfriend. It was only appropriate — the moment we got to the garden-like peak area, we were granted with unobstructed views of Mt. Maculot, where I began my life as a wannabe mountaineer.
Wow that sounded so formal.
Anyway, as usual, we invited friends to come along with us. It was a weekend hike, so why not , right? But then again we got denied so the group hike ended up as a wonderful “Sundate.”
I promised to myself that I would never go night trekking again, but the wee early hours of June 28 found me, Justin, and Jerson carefully treading through wet and muddy trails to reach the peak of Mt. Daraitan before anybody else. Why? Just so we’d be able to watch the sun rise and watch the waves of clouds cascade over Sierra Madre’s other peaks. I don’t know if Daraitan’s sea of clouds poses a threat to Pulag’s famous morning scenery, but it sure was spectacular.
Until the campers came.
Honestly, guys. Noisy hikers and campers are probably the worst thing ever in the morning, especially if you’re just trying to bask in the beauty that’s right in front of you. Oh, and not to mention the red-and-orange spiky caterpillars all over the limestone formations.
But yeah, let’s start from the beginning!