Mount Pulag is the third highest mountain in the Philippines. It is the highest in Luzon. There are three trails available for people who want to climb the mountain from Benguet. First, the Akiki trail, which takes more than 2-3 days to finish and is suited for more experienced climbers. Second, the Tawangan trail, which is steep and could also be difficult for inexperienced climbers. This course starts in Kabayan, Benguet. Third, the Ambangeg trail, which is also the easiest and safest trail to Mount Pulag. Though it is the easiest, it is equally stunningly beautiful as compared with the two other trails. Ambangeg Trail is also very popular for first-timers ^_^
The sea of clouds is very popular for its enchanting beauty. It feels like you wanna swim on it!! (but you would definitely die if you do that..so DON’T) 😀 It is very romantic place for couples– a perfect venue for engagement proposals ❤ (Ok, gentlemen?); It is a place of friendship bonding and recollection; It is also a serene space for a solo traveler. In short, it is a place for everyone who can make it to the Summit. The sunrise peak experience is beyond description. More importantly, it showcases God’s indescribable creation.
How to get there?
A bus ride from Manila to Baguio City usually takes 5-6 hours so if you want to make the most out of your trip, better leave the city as early as 12 midnight. Once in Baguio, you will have to ride a taxi (or jeepney) that will take you to Kabayan Van Terminal and jump-off points on the way to Mt.Pulag.
Step 1: Courtesy Call.
You have to inform the DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources) Office in Ambangeg of your intention to climb Mt. Pulag. Let them know when you are traveling and the number of participants in your group. Exponentially, Mt. Pulag has gained extreme popularity among hikers and sometimes it is too much for the mountain to handle. For this reason, DENR limits the number of climbers per day and also why you need to inform them ahead of your schedule.
Step 2: Ride an Overnight Bus (From Manila)
Travel to Baguio city via bus or private vehicles. Victory Liner and Genesis are among the popular bus companies servicing the route from Manila to Baguio. Terminals are located in Cubao and Pasay. The travel time for first-class buses is between 5 to 6 hours and will set you back ₱750 while regular buses will take 6 to 7 hours and cost ₱500. Book a bus ride with a departure time of around 11:00PM or midnight so that you reach Baguio early morning of the following day.
Quick Link: For Bus Reservations
Step 3: Catch the earliest van to Ambangeg
Once you reached the bus terminal in Baguio, flag a taxi to bring you to the Old Slaughterhouse. Tell the taxi driver to drop you off at the van terminal bound to Kabayan. Catch the first trip out to Kabayan which leaves around 7:00 AM.
The van to Kabayan will pass by Ambangeg. Get yourself dropped off at the junction in Ambangeg near the DENR Station. Travel time from Baguio to Ambangeg is 2 hours and will cost around ₱120-150.
Step 4: Register at the DENR Station
From the junction in Ambangeg, walk a few meters to the DENR Station. You will be asked to attend a short orientation wherein you will watch a short video presentation that summarizes the do’s and don’ts during the climb. This will also include some trivia and other helpful information that may come in handy throughout your hike.
You will have to pay an entrance fee of ₱100/person and a camping fee of ₱50/person. You can start your climb immediately after this.
Step 5: Walk or Ride a Motorcycle to the Hike Starting Point
You have the options of walking or riding a motorcycle on your way to the hike starting point. Outside the DENR Station, there will be motorcycles for hire which can bring you to Babadac Ranger Station — the hike’s starting point. Fare costs ₱250 per person per way. ( I walked!! because I didn’t want to pay that much for the distance) 🙂
Step 6: Save Your Energy or Save Your Money?
Porters and guides are readily available on the area. They traverse the mountain trails back and forth all day for people who need help in carrying heavy luggage. You can request for one at the Babadac Ranger Station. The guide fee is ₱500 per group while the porter fee is at ₱500 with a limit of 15 kilos per porter. During our travel, the guide was a-must while the porter was just an option.
Step 7: Let the Happy Trails Begin
There are three camps in the area. Camp 1, Camp 2 and the Saddle Camp.
Camp 1 is an easy 30-minute trek from Babadac Ranger Station.
Then it takes another hour to reach Camp 2. If you wish to traverse Mt. Pulag on the same day you arrived from Baguio, you’ll be surprised to know that from Camp 2, the summit is just an easy 1.5-hour trek! (But that was still far haha)
Saddle Camp is located 20 minutes below the peak so camping here is your best option, especially since you’ll probably be climbing back to the summit the next morning to welcome the sunrise and the breathtaking sea of clouds!
Click here for more: Mt.Pulag Adventure (Part 2): What To Bring?
Step 8: Take an Obligatory Photo and share it with us! ^_^
Friendly Reminder: Bring all Your Trash Back Home.