With just a few kilometers away from Baguio city proper, Mt. Ulap is becoming a popular destination ever since it opened to public last 2015. This place is known for its scenic view of the Cordillera mountain ranges while hiking the pine tree ridges.
Its 9KM eco trail has 3 peaks: Ambanaoy Paoay (1,788 mASL), Gungal Rock (1,817 mASL) & Mt. Ulap (1,846 mASL).
The trail started with assaults on concrete pavement then slowly you’ll be in a middle of tropical forest and then pine trees. For me this is the hardest part of the trail because everything is assault!
As you get higher and higher, you might experience airsickness. The trail is little steep. You have to be careful because one wrong move and you’ll fall on the cliff.
I was lucky that the view was clear on my first peak. I get to see Mt. Sto. Tomas and overlook to Baguio city. This marks as the quarter of the whole trail.
Off to the second peak. This time I trek in an almost flat surface with fewer assaults.
It wasn’t long when I reached the Gungal rock! There’s a watchman on this peak to ensure that tourist will not do crazy stunts for photo ops.
In real life, the rock is tilted. If you get out of balance, you’ll fatally fall from it. The watchman will also take your photo! By the results, I know he has been doing this for a long time. He knows what to do so you can have your best shot.
Our tour guide mentioned there was an accident here before. Fortunately, the guy was alive but he still has to be rescued by medics from baranggay which will hike for 2-3 hours to get there. Imagine how long one have to wait to be treated?
I decided not to push through the third peak. Why? It’s past 2 in the afternoon, and with my pace it’s impossible that I’ll reach the descent point by 5. I don’t want to catch sunset while still hiking. First, I don’t have flashlight. Second, if I get there by around 6 I have to charter a private transportation back to Baguio.
The descent is as challenging as the assaults even if there’s a wooden bar for support. You’ll get to pass around 3 stores, which sells merienda and lunch. Souvenirs like shirt, ref magnet, key chain and more are also for sale. You’ll also pass by few residential area and three hanging bridge.
On the descent point, a jeep is waiting for you to bring you back to Baguio.
jeep – a public utility vehicle in the Philippines
HOW TO GET THERE
- From Cubao/Pasay, take a bus bound to Baguio.
A first class bus ride will get you to Baguio in just 5 hours while it’s 7-8 hours for regular air-conditioned bus
- Take jeepney or taxi headed to Central Mall
- Jeepney to Brgy. Ampucao terminal is on Lankandula st (near fastfood giants like Jollibee, Mcdo & Chowking)
- The driver will drop you off on Ampucao Elementary School which is also the registration area.
*Assuming you are already in Baguio, the night before…
06:00 AM – Estimated arrival at the terminal station
07:00 AM – Estimated departure from the terminal (allot an hour because they’ll wait for other passengers)
08:00 AM – Estimated arrival in Brgy. Ampucao
08:30 AM – Start of trek
10:30 AM – Estimated arrival on first peak
12:30 AM – Estimated arrival on second peak
01:00 PM – Lunch
03:00 PM – Estimated arrival on third peak
05:00 PM – Estimated arrival on descent point
Roundtrip ticket (Baguio) – first class bus (Php 1,500) / regular air conditioned bus (Php 900)
Roundtrip fare to Central Mall – around Php 200
Jeep to Ampucao – Php 35
Entrance (per head) – Php 100
Tour guide fee – Php 600 (one guide is good for 6-7 pax)
Jeep back to Baguio – Php 50
Lunch – Php 100
Is this your first hike? Check out my Hiking 101: Guide for your first hike.
Have you climbed Mt. Ulap too? How was your experience?
Do you have any tips to share?
I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to drop a comment below.