Posted by: freeclimbers | May 2, 2011

Graduation Gift: Mt. Tagapo

April 28-30, 2011
Brgy. Gulod, Talim Island, Binangonan, Rizal
Mt. Tagapo

     Disappointment welcomed us at Mt. Tagapo. From the start of our ascent, we saw vast areas of burned bamboos because of kaingin. The wind, except from the summit, was absent all throughout the trek. Maybe because the wind in the trail we took was blocked by the mountain and the trees, mainly bamboos, were almost gone. What surprised us even more was the scene at the summit. There were garbage everywhere. We even witnessed a grassfire just below the summit. I don’t know if it’s man-made or by natural cause. Going back to the garbage, there was also a huge hole, probably man-made, at the summit that serves as a TRASH BIN! (UPDATE: Locals believe that Mt. Tagapo has a hidden treasure so they made the open pit at the summit to find these treasures.) We were not able to pick up those trashes because the hole was deep enough and it would be hard to get out if you have no rope. Besides, we only bought water bottles with us since it’s just a dayhike. To not spoil the moment, we just took pictures and wait for the sunset to come.

     Although the condition of this mountain was not a fun thing to watch, it still offers a breathtaking view at the top. With an almost 360 degree view, you can see it’s neighbouring wonders such as Mt. Makiling, Laguna de Bay, and the skylines of urban cities like Makati. That was also the first time I saw a wild quail during our ascent. It’s just so sad to think that I may not see them again soon. The summit also gives you a cold summer breeze as expected from a coastal area. We stayed there to wait for the sunset.

     Though towering only at 438 MASL, do not underestimate it. Almost all throughout the trek, the trail was steep (or maybe the trail we took). You will surely lose liters of sweat climbing it. Bamboos grow almost all over the mountain. Be careful also with the bamboo branches in the ground. I stepped in one during our ascent that made my foot bled so wearing cheap slippers is not preferrable. Locals climb there to gather bamboos so I think having a guide won’t be a problem. I just don’t know how much is the rate because Kuya Minick, Hector’s cousin, guided us so we did not pay. But still, guides are not necessary. If you want a more challenging trek and to avoid the scorching heat of the sun, do it at night. The view at the top will be great seeing the colorful lights of the modern cities and feeling the cold breeze of the air. Also, the trail becomes eerie because of the whistling sound of the wind and the sound of the bamboos hitting each other. You know that sound right? Pretty chilling.

     In general, the trail is safe. The people are courteous and welcoming. We enjoyed our 3 days out of the city. I just hope the local government, people living there, and fellow mountaineers would help each other in nurturing the natural beauty of this mountain and others too. Good day!


Day 1 ——————–

1500 Call time at Mercury Drug Store, Sta. ROsa, Laguna
1530 Ride Caingin-bound (CNG) tricycle. Stop at Bigaa-Caingin bridge boundary (dulo).
1600 ETA boat terminal
1645 Boat leave
1800 ETA Brgy. Gulod Talim Island. Stay at Hector’s place. Dinner

Day 2 ——————–

1530 ETA jump-off at Brgy. Gulod hall. Take the left, upward trail that enters some woodland
1645 ETA summit
1800 Start descent
1845 ETD jump-off
1930 Dinner at Hector’s place

Day 3 ——————–

0600 Wake up. Prepare and wait for boat.
0800 Boat leave
0930 ETA boat terminal
1000 ETA Mercury. Head back home


P10.00 – Caingin tricycle
P40.00 – Boat terminal

P0 – Registration fee
P? – Guide (not necessary)

Our Pictures



  1. […] one of the primary sources of freshwater in the country. There is also a large island in the lake, Talim Island, under towns of Binangonan and Cardona, […]

  2. its good!! keep it up

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