Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Climbing Mt. Gulugod Baboy in Batangas

To satisfy our addiction to mountain climbing (at least on a monthly basis), we climbed the Mt. Gulugod Baboy in Mabini, Batangas last 18-19 February 2012. Eight of us converged on the bus station at Diversion area in Bauan, Batangas, before proceeding to Philpan jump off point with a rented jeepney for Php 1,000 per trip. This time, I brought my eldest son Daniel with me.

It was around 4:30 pm when we started our leisurely ascent, not worried about trekking in the dark, since we have headlamps and flashlights anyway. Besides, most of us are carrying at least 12kg of load for overnight camping, so we cannot really push ourselves to be at the campsite before dark. Below is a photo of a dead palm tree in one of the rest stations, at dusk.

A jolly group of around 40 kids even overtook us. Their energy and spirit is remarkable, making me want to become a child again, hehe. Here's a photo of them gamely posing with us.

As we approach the campsite, we cannot find the right trail in the darkness, so we made our own trail beyond a fence with light post. There were already many hikers on the campsite when we arrived, yet we still managed to find a good spot for our tents. Unfamiliar in pitching a tadpole tent, my son and I waited for our trekmates to help us pitch our newly-bought Eusebio tent. Special thanks to AJ and GA for sharing their expertise.

After dinner of GA's chicken adobo and AJ's bicol express, we played Pinoy Henyo game over a bottle of tequila during our socials. Lights out was at 11:30 pm, after DV heard a whinny horse sound, assuming it as a "tikbalang", a half-man half-horse mythical creature in local folklore. 

It rained briefly at past 2:00 am, yet nobody among us got wet inside our respective tents. At 5:30 am, each of us started to rise to catch the sunrise at the summit. See the "time lapse" view of our neighboring campsite from foggy dawn up to around 7:30 am on the 3 consecutive photos below.

Sunrise views from the summit. The mountain got its name from its multiple peaks, since the mountain top's contours is comparable to pig (baboy) spine (gulugod) in Filipino language.

The arrow on the above photo points to a cow grazing on the summit. Here's a closer shot of that cow.

And the disgusting "evidence" they leave behind. Some trekkers say that the mountain should be called "gulugod baka" (cow) because of many cows grazing on it.

A few more views from the summit. Sombrero island, Balayan Bay, and Mt. Banahaw are easily identifiable from the peaks.

The tents pitched on the summit itself. I can just imagine the strong winds and very cold temperature their occupants have experienced the night before.

The colorful tents on the main campsite. If I'm not mistaken, the body of water on the background is fronting barangay Anilao, one of the famous dive sites in the country.

The view of the summit from second highest peak.

Other photos taken from the peaks. The upper right photo shows a horse also grazing on the mountain, the culprit "tikbalang" by DV.

Breakfast and break camp was before 9:00 am. Here's a photo of the established trail to the campsite, which we discovered only during our descent.

At around 10:30 am, we are on our way down to Philpan Dive Resort, the backpacker-friendly establishment. Its also one of the jump off points for divers in Anilao. We paid Php 60 each as entrance fee, and Php 300 for the seaside cottage we occupied. While cooking lunch from our excess rice and canned goods, we enjoyed swimming and telling stories over bottles of brandy.

Everyone on our group agrees that this is our most enjoyable climb so far!

Bookmark this post:
StumpleUpon DiggIt! Yahoo Technorati Google Twitter FaceBook


  1. Good am sir! i wud like to ask the mode of transportation with expenses going ther in gulugod baboy.... thank you!

  2. Hi, KMTV. We rode a bus to Batangas City, and asked the conductor to drop us at the Grand Terminal near Bauan diversion, where we hired a jeep to take us to the Philpan Dive resort.

    Bus fare from Manila is about P140, while the jeepney rental is P2000 round trip. So transpo expense per head is P530, but it would be lower if there are more people sharing the jeepney rental cost.

  3. tanong ko lang po kung pwede maka sabay sa next hiking nyo?

  4. Sure you can join us if we have open climbs, meaning guest hikers can participate. Please send me your contact details to, and if you are a newbie or regular climber.

  5. Hi, I am a resident of Mabini. You can also use the approach through Malimatoc I. The road forks before reaching the town proper, and this is to the left instead of right to Anilao. This is at the other side of Anilao, the area to your right when you're at the GB summit facing Batangas City. Via this approach, you will only hike for 30min from the end of the cemented road. Not very strong hikers or the elderly can take this route and reach the summit comfortably! Next time try it.

    1. Nice, a new shorter trail for a possibility of a Malimatoc-Philpan traverse. I would try that trail if I ever get back to GB. Is that trail easy to follow and not confusing? Do we need a guide on that Malimatoc trail?