This is a continuation of my Mt. Ugu story. If you haven’t read the first part, you must check on this link first! 😀
To give you a glimpse of our Day2 trip, I made “The Redemption” as its title. Simply because it’s totally a redemption of Day1! Not that I’m saying that Day1 was a mess, but rather Day 2 was its better version in terms of weather, views, food, trail, name it!
I had a very solemn sleep right after that hilarious incident that I just woke up during the wake up call. No more signs of migraine or even a bit of hangover. It totally felt like it was just a dream! Haha
We were scheduled to wake up at 0430 but the outside was still very cold. We had to prepare for our breakfast so we braved ourselves to get out of our tent. It would also be an opportunity for us to see the sun peeking and the sea of clouds glamoring if there would be any clearing. Which I was really really hoping that there would be.
Our breakfast was a win! Since we failed to have something sumptuous during dinner, we had to redeem ourselves for breakfast! This time we had Papa Ding and Sir Mars share the food with us so they lend us their cookset and stove as well. And that means faster cooking time for us! We had corned beef saute in cabbage, luncheon meat, sausage, and pancake-like soup! Haha 😀 We packed some for our lunch as well.
After breakfast was our timeless mandatory photo ops before we leave the campsite.We had 7 guests for this climb and can I just say, they were all awesome! Most of them were our frequent guests while some were first timers.
One of the requirements for us to be a fully pledged member of MMS is the induction climb. Well, for all mountaineering organization, I believe this has always been the final requirement along with the minor and major climbs. Doc Tom got inducted in this climb, which means he’s now a member of MMS! Yeyy! Along with two of our other co-trainees who climbed Mt. Guiting-Guiting on the same dates, Raffy and Leigh, the three of them were the firsts in our batch to become a member.
A few walks from the campsite lies the summit of Mt.Ugu which has a marker that says 2,150MASL. The highest so far from the mountains that I’ve climbed. Here, you’ll also see a gravestone of the 1987 tragic plane crash wherein about 5o people died. Doc Tom told us the story behind it. Apparently, this mountain got discovered during the aftermath of a PAL aircraft crash which was bound for Baguio. It crashed in the slopes of Mt. Ugu while attempting to land in a monsoon that got zero visibility. The river which was supposedly the route signage of the pilot that time was a different river apparently. Rescuers found the wreckage five hours after the crash, 200 yards below the summit. Subsequent rescue operations apparently paved the way for trails, and soon, word spread amongst the mountaineering groups about a new hiking destination. Another interesting fact was that the campsite where we stayed was the same site where the recovered bodies were laid down. Creepy isn’t it?! Good thing they told us about it just after we left the campsite! Haha 😀
Our Day2 descend was absolutely a REWARD! The trail was magnificent all throughout. Unfathomably surreal! I saw perfectly paralleled pine trees and different kinds of it. There were short width trails that got cliffs lying just a few inches beside you so you have to be extra careful. There were rice terraces on different hues of green. There were markers sponsored by R.O.X in every half kilometer which started at 15.0 km. The weather was good, it was absolutely fine for me that I didn’t mind getting tired. Whew! I’m running out of words to describe it. A big part of my strength probably came from these things.
The whole trail indeed was an eye delight. Not to mention the hanging bridge that we were longing to see, which apparently lies yet at the 0.5km mark! It drizzled in the afternoon so we had to put our rain gears on. Our descend’s pace like the usual was faster. We barely stopped for a rest although we were already complaining of our tired legs on the last few kilometers. We passed by a water source prior reaching the hanging bridge. We were really trying to reach it before it gets dark since we might miss the view of the bridge. True enough, we were just in time!
We reached the 0.0 km at 1800 already and it was already dark. We washed up and went ahead to our last stopover which was at Itogon, Benguet. They gave us certificates that says we’ve conquered Mt.Ugu! Wiii! 😀 We had our post climb afterwards then headed our way to Baguio for dinner.
There goes our awesomely redeeming Day2! Congratulations to our very charming Team Leader, Cha Jadie for a very well organized climb! She absolutely nailed it even before the climb starts. She would sms us just to update us of the weather which removed our doubts because of the rough weather in Manila. I appreciate that in all honesty. Doc Tom also did well as a sweeper. I swear, I admired his patience and his motivating skills really helped those who were afraid during the steep and narrow trails.
It was absolutely one of those climbs that I will cherish and reminisce for the rest of my life. Pictures and words were not enough to describe how wonderful this weekend was. I cannot be grateful enough to God for this gift of nature! To be in the middle of His creations filled me with so much wonder which kept me going. Truly indescribable and uncontainable! I know there are a lot more beautiful mountains there to celebrate with and I can’t wait to see and explore them the more! Woot!