Mount Ayaas is another playground of the trail idols. It provides various difficulty on the climbs with a share of dirt roads, steep paths, technical terrain and an overlooking view of the nearby mountain ranges being one of the higher peaks in Rodriguez, Rizal.
I’ve traversed this trail on two occasions. First was when we were feeling out the trail with Rene and Jun and the next was a few weeks after with Mike, Mariel and Inja. Both trails were done at an easy pace though we had fewer rest stops on the second climb. Mount Ayaas is among the favorite trails of experienced trail runners as it gives them a 5 kilometer climb that can also be a jump-off point for longer runs when you include the nearby areas as part of the trail loop.
Trekking Mount Ayaas
The start of the trek is at Wawa Tourism area where you take the hanging bridge near the covered court area. There are several trails you get to visit from this parts and one of them is Mount Ayaas. It’s a 5 kilometer climb to the peak with about 600 to 700 meters of elevation gain. It has different trail surfaces and ascending trails for training. The first 500 meters is the short stretch from the start to the foot of the climb.
The first part of the climb is a technical one with uneven rock paths mixed with some dirt roads. I usually prefer my Hoka Evo jawz for this kinds of trail for better grip on rocks especially when wet. It start with some steep ascents and then a series of rock paths. I hate this part because of the drag but I also love that it help me familiarize myself with the surface. There are moderate parts but there are also parts where you have to take a bigger step. Once you get to the top the trails get easier.
After the rocky part of the trail comes a short descent on dirt roads heading to the foot of the next set of climbs. These is a short forested part with trees and bamboo shafts over a rolling terrain. It’s a short stretch but this could be a good breather before the next set of climbs.
The climb resumes over a mix of single tracks and wider dirt roads. The climb gets a bit steeper and for these parts, I try to cut the climb into shorter sections. The store is about the mid way point of the climb and that’s my usual rest stop for a short round of drinks. It’s a bit pricey here compared to the price at Wawa area but you got to understand the effort to bring the goods over 2-3 kilometers of climbing.
After the store, there’s a short descent before the climb resumes. There’s another house along the way, which can be a rest stop. There’s a short paved road at the side. That one heads to Mascap area so remember not to take road especially heading back. Since we’re climbing a mountain, let’s take the road going up. The next is another set of climbs on dirt roads and it gets steeper again heading to the relay tower. I’m sure you’re getting the formula now. The higher you get, the steeper the trail it gets.
The relay station can be another rest stop since the next part would be a lot technical and steeper. The last part is about 500+ meters to the summit but as the formula goes, the higher you are, the steeper it gets. It’s mostly single tacks from this point. I like the area surrounded by Bamboos as it feels like I’m searching for Kung Fun Panda. I usually take it 50-100 steps effort before taking a break for a few seconds to catch my breath. I’m just glad that the Evo Jawz have excellent traction even on the technical parts. It’s a grind out climb but it’s tolerable.
After going through a series of steep technical trails, I’ve finally seen daylight, which meant I was nearing the summit. Yes and NO!!! There are several false summits as just when you dig deep to reach the summit, you see another set of climbs and you repeat the process until you reach the summit. It’s worth it!!!
Mount Ayaas summit is 627 meters above sea level and is among the higher peaks in the area. You are rewarded with a panoramic view of the mountain range. It’s one of the best view points of the majestic beauty of the mountain trails of Rodriguez, Rizal.
While it was open at the summit, it was also windy so we didn’t really mind staying for a while just to enjoy the view. There’s also trail access points to Malasya and Mascap area. Maybe next time, we get to climb Mount Ayaas from these areas or go longer to explore this regions.
While the climb can be long and agonizing, the descent was pure downhill fun. We barely noticed getting out of the stretch from Mount Ayaas peak to the relay station as we were running over the technical trails. I think it’s much safer to run this part because of the downward momentum. I’m just glad that I had good traction to rely on.
It was another downhill run heading to the store where we rested and had a few snack. The way back was probably half the time going up until the last 1.5 kilometers, which is the rocky portion of the trails. There were run-able paths and there were portion, you had to slow down because of the uneven terrain. I’m just glad to have a good grip and faster response time on this stretch as I made my way out of the trail and back to the Wawa main area. Mount Ayaas has always been a good work out.