(From beach to peak, March 8, 2014)
(From beach to peak, March 8, 2014)

Analyze things from ridge to reef.

 As part of my bucketlist project this year, I, together with some friends, have to go on hiking numerous times this year. We started with those mountains that are just near Laguna and are considered just to be minor climbs. Basically, we planned first to go to mountains within Region IVa (CALABARZON), or the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas and Quezon. We first went to Mt. Maculot in Cuenca, Batangas then, after a few small talks, we then decided that we will climb Mt. Daguldol next.

Mt. Daguldol, according to some local residents, derived its name from the sound  of thunder. It is located in San Juan, Batangas , with a jump-off point at Barangay Hugom. One exciting fact about this mountain is that it is located in a coastal area and the trail actually includes the well-celebrated beach in the south, the Laiya beach. For those who wants climbing and swimming such as myself, this trip is actually something that I can recommend.

Before the start of our trek, we needed to register and get ourselves a guide (a local in the area). The registration and the management of the trail are done by the Hugom Environmental Guides Association (HEGA). The trail was remarkably cleared and there was a very small chance that our group, or maybe other groups as well, to get lost even without the help of a guide. Another good thing (for some, bad thing) about the trail going to the peak of Mt. Daguldol is the presence of numerous stores selling different kinds of refreshments including “Halo-Halo”. Also, there are many children going up and down the mountain selling fresh “buko” (coconut) juice, which actually relieved our thirst along the way.

Our guide left us when we reached the first camp site, Gulugod-baboy. Mt. Daguldol has three (3) major campsites. The first, as aforementioned, is Gulugod-Baboy which has a near source of running water. The next one, where we stayed overnight, is Niyugan, and the last one, Anahawan, which we visited before we descended.

Early morning, when we reached the last camp site, we decided to descend right away since we also wanted to enjoy the tranquility of Laiya beach. It was my first time staying on a mountain overnight and it was such a great experience.

When we left, we took nothing but pictures, we left nothing but memories.

Travel Guide*
Olivarez Plaza** to San Pablo City Jeep 1 hour
San Pablo City to Candelaria, Quezon Jeep 1 hour
Candelaria, Quezon to San Juan, Batangas Tricycle 35 minutes
San Juan, Batangas to Brgy. Hugom Jeep > 30 minutes
Brgy. Hugom to Campsite/Peak Foot > 3 hours
*based on actual events
**Los Banos, Laguna (College)