9th summit: Mt. Pulag

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masl: 2922

jumpoff: Ranger Station,Ambangeg trail

status: to be revenged due to foggy weather

March 2-3,2013

Thanks to http://www.travelfactor.org for this great adventure!

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Finally met Mt. Pulag over the weekend but the beauty shied away. Experienced 5 degrees Celsius temperature at the peak while a chilling 12 degrees Celsius in our camp before midnight..I shall come back again but meantime daydream again the supposed great sunrise and sea of clouds at the summit.

My first work assignment as part-time Travel coordinator (assistant to senior TC Ron) for Travel Factor brought me to this great mountain. The assignment was given to me early Feb so just think about the excitement I had since day one of the time this was given to me.

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I’ve seen great pictures of this mountain at sunset,sunrise and of course, with the sea of clouds that is so mesmerizing to see. I of course dreamt of this scenes  but just like the mountains I’ve been to with foggy peaks, I count most the experience on the trail and really, its always about the climb and what a great bonus it would be if the peak is clear.

The trail was easy ( at least for me as compared to my most treks). I would say its good for first timers,even kids,even for the slow trekkers. Though the assault to summit is a different story where some parts,although just few, are straightforward and trails are on the edges of the mountain with not so deep bottom.

I’ve enjoyed the trail going to our camp, but enjoyed more the beautiful view of grasslands,or should I say,grasshills, and the cute dwarf bamboos that beautifully landscaped the area.

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And yes, I painfully wanted to experience the Pulag temperature! hahahah the temperature and weather in Pulag was so unpredictable indeed. we’re lucky that the temperature in our base camp was just about 16-18 degree Celsius,not the below zero that some mountaineers have experienced in the past.

But the night until sunday morning was painfully cold..hahahah. I popped 2 tablets of biogesic coz of headaches, maybe coz of great cold that have dropped to about 12 degrees( as per other non group mountaineer w/ a thermometer I’ve asked ) until early morning.

I had 2 long black socks on my feet, tights & 2 cotton jogging pants layered my lower part while a long-sleeved shirt,very thick winter jacket I borrowed from my sister, 2 shawls wrapping my head & neck, a blanket covering my body,a knitted bonnet on my head,black thick gloves for my hands, and yet I was still chilling!!

hahahahha..indeed,be careful of what you wish for!

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I had an on & off sleep but I think I rested enough that saturday night. Woke up at 2.45 am and shivering seriously outside our tent..I kept moving my body instead to at least warm it up while at the same time getting used to the temperature.

We started  to assault the peak at 3.30am.

Reached the summit by around 5.20am,still dark and yes, soo bloody cold! I asked a fellow non-group mountaineer about the temperature (coz he has a temperature measuring device ) and said its 5.5 degrees Celsius! whoahhh!!

I survived it with some shivering here and there, body exercises here and there and putting my hands and head inside the garbage plastic I brought.hahahah

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When we got there, the moon & stars were shining so bright up above so we were soo excited that we will have the great sunrise and sea of clouds that day.

But as 6am came,6.15 came, the fog kept on building up instead at the summit and the peak’s surrounding had almost zero visibility I couldnt take any good picture coz my camera lens get easily fogged up. Our guides told us that with that weather, there;’s no possiblity we will get what we wanted.so we decided to go down at 6.30am.sigh!😦

early morning assault to summit

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the peak

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the foggy trek back to camp

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sadly, several trails were created due to mass climbing and  not strictly following single trail trek. I hope the park management and DENR will do something  about this otherwise more and more trails will be created thus damaging the park.tsk tsk tsk!

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Everywhere was fogged up,even our base camp wasn’t spared. not our lucky time.

we broke camp at 8.30am after breakfast then trekked back to ranger station by 9.10am. while on the way back, blue skies is peeping here and there but the summit was still covered w/ clouds.

we reached ranger station just almost for lunch with great sunny weather.and please I don’t wanna imagine if Mt.Pulag have the same weather at that time! hahahahah

I shall return definitely,and I must see it in fine weather!

As always,reaching the summit is one great bonus, but its always the trail that count most.

its the mossy trees,flowers,unexpected trail that counts..

its the people you’re trekking with that counts..be it making you happy, testing your patience, deepening your awareness, widening your mind, its great to always trek with people either u just met or still getting to know.

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Overall I had great laughters on the road,on the mountain and at the camp.

thanks to Travel Factor TC Ron and co-assistant TC Billy & Boni! Until the next mountain adventure coz yeah,We Know Adventure right?😉

P.S

i had an awesome toploading experience with Ms. Faye going to Ambuklao Dam and yes, my first in the Ambuklao dam also..

Awesome! We know adventure indeed!

toploading Benguet with Ms.Faye

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sidetrip at Ambuklao Dam

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