|The Climb (Mt Ulap)|
I desperately wanted to climb that day, but had nothing planned. Like what any desperate people do, I turn to the internet. Less than 10 minutes search, and I already found lots of organized climb. Now I'm a fairly capable person - I have reasonable judgment (most of the time), can carry my own weight, and can run fast if need be. So what the heck.
Cravings - whether food, experience, people, place, etc. - I always go for it one way or another. If I don't, the cravings just get so strong that I short circuit. Like a battery, I malfunction and explode - that is I go crazy.
I was nothing near to the short circuit phase, it hasn't happened in 3 years. This time it was just a particularly strong craving for the mountains. As they say, the mountains are calling, and I must go :)
I contacted the organizer and confirmed my slot for the event less than 5 hrs away.
I asked a friend to join me, and she agreed right away. We left Manila before 12mn and arrived in Benguet jump-off before the sun rose. Just as we were leaving, the rain fell strongly, and the wind blew harshly. It was troubling.
|Red Trashbag (Mt Ulap)|
The trail was a combination of gradual uphill and downhill soil or grassland. There wasn't a need for rappelling, climbing, or the like.
It was stormy throughout the hike but I'm thankful that we were still able to witness quick clearings and beautiful sights - even the clouds that brought the rains were majestic to look at. I almost felt stupid wishing for the sun so badly when the clouds and the rain at that time were just as good of a companion. To the soul, it's just as warm as the sun is.
|Zero visibility after 50m (Mt Ulap)|
|Peak 1 - no clearing (Mt Ulap)|
|Change is coming , mehehe (Mt Ulap)|
I continued the trek and became more captivated with the fog engulfing us. It was almost like the start of a good movie (probably a horror one, eeep!) But as morning comes, it started to feel like a feel good movie. Oops that sounded cheesy. What I'm saying is I enjoyed the hike a lot despite the weather. No actually, I enjoyed the hike a lot because of the weather :)
|Cloud Nine (Mt Ulap)|
|Blue is just as warm (Mt Ulap)|
|Gungal Rock (Mt Ulap)|
In the mountains, there is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.
See you around!
1. There is no transportation and expense breakdown for this post, because I joined an organized climb which costed P1300 for for roundtrip van Manila-Benguet-Manila, guide and registration fees, 1 dinner, and bag tag.
2. There's a queue for those who want to take a photo on top of Gungal Rock - A QUEUE in the mountain! Can you believe it?!
3. According to the guide, the mountain is named Mt Ulap because clouds sit atop the summit of the mountain during certain times of the day.