Nature-ral High

Nature-ral High
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail

March 10, 2017

Mt. Ugo via Ambasa trail - Mt. Ugo on another perspective

Similar to my Kibungan Trek, this hike was also taken last year and again because of my busy schedule and the coming of the twins, I was not able to blog this. This will be another photo blog with a few details the I recall from memory. 

This was Gianne's first multi-day hike (3 days). We did not hire any porters.

There is another trail in Mt. Ugo other than the popular Kayapa-Itogon traverse. 
This trail is called the Ambasa trail as the trail starts in sitio Ambasa
The trail is more pristine and is rarely use, proof is that dry leaves cover the trail, which sometimes are also covered in grass.
One famous site seen along the trail is Mt. Marikit. The guide told us the story on how the mountain got its name but I can hardly recall, and yes the mountain is climbable.
Another famous trail mark of the mountain is the "7 steps" which are seven steep slopes and flat ground which looks like seven stair flights for giants. 
West summit of the Mt. Ugu is part of this trail, until our trek I never thought that this peak exists.

Trivia (from the guide):
  - Former name  of Mt. Ugo is Mt. Umugaga which means first to see sunrise ( on all the mountains in the place)
  - Mt. Ugo got its name from the word "Ugo-an" or to slith the throat
  - The summit site of Mt. Ugo is where the head hunter tribe Busul do their throat slitting
  - One of the famous Busul victim was the Spanish Secretary General Juan Cito
  - There was once a tri-partite marker in the summit that points to the direction of Pangasinan, Benguet and Nueva Viscaya. This marker was stolen/broken down as treasure hunters thought gold was buried underneath.

Map of the Mountain Regions. Since these are montainose region, wonder how many regions needs to be discovered.

The traditional KM0 marker photo

She was so happy to be so close to a pine trees. And look how pristine the trail is

Traditional Ibaloi house

This will be our lodge for the night. 

More bridges

Mt. Marikit on the background, and yes it is hikable.

One of the popular "Seven Steps"

Another one of the "Seven Steps"

One of the good place to take a photo. A view not found on the tradtional Kayapa-Itogon traverse.

Our guide Ramsey!

Beautiful flat ground that looks like a park

West Summit view. On plain eyesight Pangasinan can be seen.

On our route to the main summit

Traditional summit head-stand

Summit group photo

Bushfire or Kaingin

Another local Ibaloi house at Lusod where we had our second night stay


March 5, 2017

Return to Kibungan : Benguet-Ilocos-LaUnion Trek

This trek was done more than a year ago. Due to my busy schedule and the coming of the twins, I was not able to blog the experience. Details of the hike is vague in my memory now. So far this is what I can remember...

  • This was an MOC Batch II induction  climb
  • The route is different from the one I have taken in 2010
  • I hike while nursing an e-colli infection that I had been having for a couple of weeks then (no one else is capable to lead this climb on our team). This made my trek such a burden
  • We were unable to exit to La Union as the roads were under construction. We almost trek the entire river bed. It might had been a long trek as the jeep took 3 hours complete.

This will just be a photo blog with a few details.

Rice fields at the start of the Trek

Bridge over troubled water

Compared to my previous trek, there are parts where there are railings 

We missed our IT and arrived at Tacadang without sunlight

First day camp

Reminiscing my childhood. Play without gadgets

At the sound of the bell, students promptly line up for flag ceremony 

View of Les-eng rice terraces

Array of flowers

Harvested rice stalks

The popular Kibungan mountain pillars that reminds me of LoTR. Rainy season, those gaps creates waterfalls that are pleasant to look at

After Batangan elementary school, suddenly we had no visibility. Another no clearing at Batangan view deck

The perilous trek down from Batangan summit to Licungan in Ilocos

Still cant believe I went down from there

Licungan in Sugpon Ilocos Sur

The best campsite I have experience so far. Dry ground, no wind, very large space and cool air.

View of Amburayan river from Licungan

Naked kids swimming the river

make shift bridge

These are fish traps made of bamboo. The flowing water push the fish into the cages, and there is no way to swim back. I guess the farmers visit this cages at least 1x a week.

Monster Jeep. (with 6 wheels)