Have you ever tried hiking on a rainy day? Does it ever enter in your mind if that would be enjoyable? And lastly, will you even try? If someone had ask me these questions before I hike Mt. Ulap these would be my answers: No, Never and definitely NOT. I believe that hiking is best done when the trail is dry, sun’s up and shining.
I would also welcome all the sweats that’ll trickle down to my face rather than the rain drops. But, no matter how well we planned our hikes, we could never predict how the weather would turn out. And this kind of experience is usually the ones that shapes us to be stronger and more resilient to adversaries, when it comes to travelling. Anyhow, this article should excite you and give you a glimpse of how appealing Mt. Ulap can be, despite of the unruly weather we had.
MT. ULAP ECO-TRAIL
Entry point: Brgy. Ampucao, Itogon
Exit point: Brgy. Sta. Fe, Itogon
LLA: 16.2904 N, 120.6312 E, 1846 MASL (Mt. Ulap)
Days required / Hours to summit: 1 day / 2-3 hours
Specs: Difficulty 3/9, Trail class 1-3,
Features: Grassland and pine ridges, scenic views of the Cordilleras, burial caves
Credits: Pinoy Mountaineer
We went to Mt. Ulap last November 26, 2016 with my highschool friend together with his girlfriend and her four colleagues. We joined a group tour that was organized by First Gear Travelers and availed the package for P 1,300. If you would thoroughly search Facebook especially DIY Travel Philippines, you’ll find groups that offer cheaper rates.
- Private Van Transfers (MNL-Itogon-Baguio-MNL)
- Comprehensive Travel Insurance (during Land Transfer only)
- Registration Fees
- Local Guides Fees
- Entrance Fees
- Tour Coordinator’s Fee
We slept throughout the 4-hour drive to Brgy. Ampucao. Chilly breeze welcomed us, as we hop out of our van and explored the covered court that is use as parking lot for those in group tours. My stomach started to shudder and I realized that I brought the wrong jacket. I was so confident that it’ll be sunny and picked up a thin-cotton jacket. After layering with my also thin dri-fit shirt, I had chicken mami for breakfast, I enjoyed the food as it helped the quivering to subside.
At around 6 o’clock, we started our trek complete with ponchos or trash-bags-turned-into-poncho to protect us from getting wet but failed to since it was also windy.
What to Wear:
- Dri-Fit Shirts or Long Sleeves
- Leggings / Jogging pants / Compression Pants
- Thick Dri-Fit Socks
What to Bring:
- 1.5L Water
22:30 – Meet up at MOA
0430 – ETA for Brgy, Ampucao
0500 – ETA at Ampucao Registration
0530 – Start of Trek
0630 – Ambanao Paoya
0830 – Gungal, photos ops
1030 – Summit of Mt. Ulap ( Lunch)
1130 – Pongol Human cave
1330 – Wash up Bound to Baguio City
1500 – Baguio City – Optional Side Trip
1630 – Early Dinner – Good Taste (own account)
1730 – ETD Baguio to Manila
2300 – ETA Manila
Read: Travel Philippines First
It was also our last stop since our tour guide and the organizers decided to turn back as the rain poured down and leave us with zero visibility. They said that the trail to the 3rd peak would be more slippery and steeper. We didn’t have a choice but to follow with a heavy heart.
How to Get There:
- Take a Bus to Baguio
- Take a Jeep from Baguio to Brgy. Ampucao via Philes-Bound route, get off at Ampucao Elementary School
Private: Proceed to Baguio from Manila, then take the road to Itogon/Philex and make a left turn to Brgy. Ampucao.
Registration Fee – P 50
Camping Site Fee – P800 (10 Pax and below)
Guide Fee (7 Pax Per Guide)
- Day Hike – P 600
- Overnight – P 1,000
Brgy. Ampucao Tourism – 0998-9589549
Mt. Ulap Council – 0928 483 1133 | 0946 115 9154 | 0946 340 4561
It was a nice hiking even if the sun, the wind and the rain conspired to make it more memorable. And since we didn’t reach the last peak, I made a promise to go back for a revenge hike and experience Mt. Ulap on a fine weather.