Incoming: Colorfest Electric Night Run

Colorfest gets electrified with a night run edition happening on December 2, 2023 at Bridgetowne, Pasig. Colorfest Electric Night Run comes in fun and friendly 1K, 2K and 5K distances as you enjoy the vibrant colors of the night and the party atmosphere of the event.

The Run Gets Electric

The Colorfest Electric Night Run is set to take place on December 2, 2023, in Bridgetowne, Pasig. This night edition of the popular Colorfest Run offers friendly distances of 1K, 2K, and 5K runs, making it accessible to a wide range of participants. With a focus on creating a party atmosphere and an adrenaline-pumping adventure, the event promises an unforgettable experience under the night sky.

Participants can expect a unique nighttime adventure filled with electric lights, vibrant colors, and a feel-good vibe. The event brings the running community to a thrilling and enjoyable running experience, making it a must-attend event for those seeking both fun and fitness on the night of December 2nd in Bridgetowne, Pasig.

Event Details

  • Date: December 2, 2023
  • Venue: Bridgetowne, Pasig
  • Distances: 1K, 2K, 5K
  • Registration:
    • Special Early Bird (August 25 – September 15, 2023) – P 1,500
    • Early Bird (September 16-October 31, 2023) – P1,700
    • Regular Rate (November 1-25, 2023) – P2,000
  • Inclusion:
    • Race shirt
    • Night Light Glasses
    • Race bib
    • Finisher Medal
    • Drawstring Bag
    • Hydration
    • Color Packet
  • Registration: Hyvesports
  • Race Updated: Colorfest Facebook Page
Categories: My Thoughts | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Incoming: 31st Yakult 10 Miler

Yakult has been a fixture when it comes to fitness and nutrition in the Philippines with their good priobiotics taking care of our tummy for Decades. Yakult 10-Miler has also been a pioneer in the running scene with it’s 31st edition happening in October 15, 2023 at the CCP Complex.

31st Yakult 10 Miler

From Yakult Youtube Page

Running is back on its boom stage and among the event that stayed true to its commitment in fitness and in health was Yakult Philippines. In more than 3 decades, Yakult has been hosting the Yakult 10 Miler and its 31st edition is happening on October 15, 2023 at CCP Complex. The run is open for runners of all ages with newbie friendly 3-Kilometers, 5-Kilometers, 10 Kilometers and of course their 10-miler (16-kilometer) distances. You can register via Hyvesports Portal.

By taking part in the Yakult Run, individuals not only engage in physical activity but also join a community that celebrates resilience, community spirit, and personal achievements. So, lace up your shoes, push your limits, and be part of this remarkable journey towards a healthier and more fulfilling life. Register now and embrace the Yakult Run challenge!

Race Details

  • Date: October 15, 2023
  • Venue: CCP Complex
  • Gunstart
    • 10 Miler – 4:30 am
    • 10 – Kilometer – 4:45 am
    • 5 – Kilometer – 5:15 am
    • 3 – Kilometer – 5:30 am
  • Fees and Inclusion
    • 10 Miler – P1,250 (Inclusions Singlet, Race Bib with timing chip, Finisher Medal, Hydration, Yakult, 16K Finisher’s Shirt)*
    • 10 – Kilometer – P950 (Inclusions Singlet, Race Bib, Finisher Medal, Hydration, Yakult)*
    • 5 – Kilometer – P650 (Inclusions Singlet, Race Bib, Finisher Medal, Hydration, Yakult)**
    • 3 – Kilometer – P650 (Inclusions Singlet, Race Bib, Finisher Medal, Hydration, Yakult)**
      • * Early Bird discount P200 until July 15, 2023 only
      • ** Early Bird discount P100 until July 15, 2023 only
  • Registration: Hyvesports
  • Website: Yakult Philippines
Categories: My Thoughts | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Itogonia Wild Country Trail Run 2023

Itogonia 8K felt like a struggle to me. I’m no longer used to the frenetic pace of a race or a climb. I’m more or less down to being a recreational trail runner. My legs and lungs would disagree but I did have a good time revisiting my home trail.


When Don started Itogonia 5 years ago, I had the chance to have a first look at the course with and 8K Camp John Hay to Poblacion in Itogon run. Then there was another time from Poblacion to Kotkot Saddle and also another variation of the course from John Hay to Gumatdang. So there’s such a legacy already with the Itogonia race. Somehow, it was always a wet day at the trail. 2023 had a scare before the race as there was a typhoon before the race, which resulted to having the plan B route (Camp John Hay trails).

Camp John Hay

Camp John Hay is home trails for me and I’ve probably gone through all the variations of the course since it’s always part of my routine when I go home in Baguio City. If I wanted an easy day at the trail, I’ll take the upper part and head to the lower part and if I want more challenge I would usually start from the lower part take the steep climb to VOA Embassy and enjoy the upper part.

Fun Before The Race

Basketball with the Race Director

Day before the race was kit claiming and race briefing. On the lag times, I had a chance to play basketball with the Race Director Don. I also welcomed our guest Ms Aura International 2021 Faith Garcia and team who had a chance to stay at Casa Cielo at Pinewood Ridge.

Medtecs also supplied their ultra light facemasks, which is perfect for running especially that Baguio has the regulation of mandatory wearing of masks indoors.

With Team Aura led by Ms Aura International 2021 Faith Garcia

It was also great to meet running friends and meet new ones as well.

Ms Aura Faith, Mr International Papi Otep and Trevor from Malaysia.

The Race

With Faith

8K had an adjusted gun start of 8 am. Since this is Baguio and the Camp John Hay trails were mostly shaded, It was really nothing to worry about. I usually run on the trails at 10 am or noon so it would be a bit warmer. I’m a bit rusty on the run since I haven’t been running lately due to workload so this was a brisk walk pace kind of run.

Photo by Naethan Modales

First kilometer of the route was from CAP John Hay to the riding circle, which was mostly paved roads. I was just walking at this point allowing faster runners to go first. The plan was go conservative until the steep climb at kilometer 3. After the riding circle, it was a steep descent to the lower part of the trail. I always enjoy the views from this part with a rich Pine Forest Trails, which also transform to a moderately ascending trail heading to Kadaklan before it descends again for the lowest part of the trail.

Huffing and Puffing after the climb – Photo by the one and only Papi Otep

Whenever I race I always identify the challenging part and this was it. From kilometer 3, it was around a 600-700 meter ascent with about 30%+ gradient. From a constant walk pace, I shifted to a run and rest pace. I tried to do 50 steps and take a few seconds to catch my breath before making the next effort. Since we are using the trail part of the climb, it was more challenging than the road ascent adjacent to this because of the switchback climbs. It was a struggle but I know it’s only a short stretch. The climb led to the road stretch and then one final climb. Up there was the aid station with a lot of familiar faces led by Papi Otep. Upon reaching the Voice of America Aid station. It was also my mind saying the race is good as accomplished as I am done with the hard part.

HI Faith

Whenever I do this trail, I like the stretch from the upper part up to the red fire hydrant as it gives you a peek of Itogon mountain range on several part of the trails. I met Faith at this stretch on her second loop for her 16 Kilometers distance. This stretch is mostly flat with a short climb in the middle and a short descent heading to the red fire hydrant. It felt like routine at this point but it still felt tiring especially with no training.

Photo by Miles of Active Pinas

On the way back, I met Naethan who’s also a marshal of the course. We were at talking pace discussing about the trails. Most of the time when I’m on the trails, I bump into Naethan doing his regular plogging and clean up of the trails. He also supports our trail academy advocacy. We separated at the VOA Embassy Gate and it’s less than 3 kilometers for me back to the finish line. This part of the trail was mostly single track but mostly flat with a few ascents and descents until the riding circle. I exited the trail on the horse back riding area and then it was the road part back to the finish line.

I enjoyed feeling the race environment again though I’m still convincing my legs and lungs to do more race like this. Congrats Itogonia Team on a well organized race.

Categories: My Runs | Tags: , | Leave a comment

The Road To OATM 3

204 energetic, passionate and endorphin-filled people made me remember that if we put premium to the experience of the participants, we get a very successful and memorable event. On Philippines and Pinoy Trails resumes On A Trail Mission at a very scenic and run-able Timberland Heights last May 7, 2023.

On A Trail Mission 3

Let’s start with a shout out to On Philippines, who’s been our title sponsor for the past three On A Trail Mission. We’re growing the event with your support from the high peak of Mount Bidawan to the Steep climbs of Mount 360 and now on the scenic trails of Timberland Heights. When we started OATM, we never thought of it as a series but more on two brands uniting in promoting the advocacy of fitness, nature and the outdoors. 3 legs and more to come. I guess OATM is here to stay.

Timberland Heights is always special to me being the site of 3 flagship races and 2 trail academies. It’s so flexible that a slight tweak in the race route will give you a totally different experience. Since we tried to limit the registrants of OATM 1 and 2, I knew the Timberland Heights edition would be different. All my events here were mass participation events with 400-600 participants from races and 200-300 participants for trail academies. We wanted to create an experience that’s friendly to newbies of all ages and fitness level. Thanks also to our regular sponsors in Dans, Polar Watches, Lightwater and Vitamin Boost, Lecka and Timberland Highlands Resort.

Aside from the registration, I had to make sure that the pacers would buy in on the advocacy. On our first trail academy in Timberland in 2018, we had a group recon with the pacers before the event. This time, we had a zoom briefing and surprisingly, we had an excellent group of pacers all united in a cause and even sharing their own ideas. Up next was the registration and despite not boosting our posts, we had an influx of registrants that reached more than 200 already.

We had our initial recon in March to establish the trails then a secondary check in April to check on critical areas. We then had a final recon a day before the event for marking the trail and also to ensure that the trails were safe. We’ve actually identified a blockage in the Green Zone due to a fallen tree. Fortunately, this was immediately resolved by Timberland Estate. I love doing recons because it’s where I get to feel the experience in store for our participants plus we really put premium on safety.

The race village was up and ready the day before the event so we only had minor setup for event day. Everything was on time and it was amazing how participants came in droves which eventually ended up with 204 trail participants. The talk were on time and showed variety from the different speakers and pacers. The run part was fun with everybody getting the feel of the beautiful trails of Timberland Heights especially the panoramic Table Top.

Event monitoring with Timberland Heights guides

Honestly, I was still not that confident in being able to mount events as big as I used to. Even before the event, I had to go through all those what could go wrong scenarios and possible actions. At the end of the day, it was a game of execution and being able to adjust to the situation. With the help of Timberland Heights guides, pacers and fellow runners, we were able to adopt to surprises during the event. All got back safe to the finish line and that’s a blessing on its own. The crowd’s energy was in full display up until the closing of the event as they discovered a new trail, a new experience and met new friends.

Categories: My Thoughts | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

ZamPen’s Open Water Swim at Lake Maragang is A One Of A Kind Race-cation

What do you look forward to in a race? Is it a way to challenge your limits?  Is it your way to immerse and socialize with the community?  Is it your way to appreciate nature in its raw and pristine form? 

Lake Maragang’s open water swim is a little bit of everything. It’s a challenging 1.5 or 3 kilometers distance around the lake. The event was also an appreciation of the raw natural beauty of the lake, which also came with a 5-kilometer roller coaster habal ride from Tigbao, Zamboanga del Sur.  Then, it was a great way to feel the local hospitality, the delicacies and the presence of key dignitaries of the region during the event.  

Open Water Swim

Photo from Zampen Openwater Swim Circuit Facebook Page

Over 100 swimmers dared to swim the 1.5 and 3 kilometer distance around the murky waters of Lake Maragang.  While the ZamPen’s open water swim is a competitive race, the organizers were able to make it a fun, festive and friendly race environment that had participants ranging from kids to seniors.  The 3-kilometers swimmers had to do two loops around the lake while the 1.5-kilometers swimmer had to complete one loop around the lake.  While there were heavy rains before the race, this did not deter participants from starting and eventually finishing the race.  There was also premium on safety with buoys place for each swimmer as a way to identify the participants in the race.  One advantage of having the swim leg in a lake is that you can see all the participants in the lake.  At the end of the race, everybody had a sense of accomplishment and a happy experience joining the race.

A Beautiful Adventure

Even before the race, it was an exciting ascent already via habal ride on rolling ascending single track paved roads along cliffs and ridges.  You got to admire the driving skill of the riders over the climbs and curves in the road.  It was a roller coaster adventure from Tigbao to Lake Maragang at around 750 meters above sea level (MASL).  The reward of that intense ride was the majestic Lake Maragang.  I just love how calming lakes are especially Lake Maragang, which is a heart shaped lake and is such a scenic delight.  I even took the trails surrounding the lake was another beautiful adventure for us.  It was raw trails which is heavily forested. It was an up and down, slip and slide adventure in the trails. We also got see various insects like centipedes, moths and even the scary wasp plus occasional peeks of the lake from various vantage points.

Cold Weather, Warm People, Great Food

Lake Maragang had a micro climate and its mostly cool at its elevation of 750 MASL.  I really welcomed the cold weather coming from mostly tropical weather in Metro Manila.  While it’s been cool at the lake, it felt warm how we felt the local hospitality from us enjoying the local delicacies to their signature local wine collection.  We also felt secure the whole time with ample security in the area and also seeing local dignitaries during  the event including the Municipal Mayor of Tigbao, Hon. Eleazar Carcallas, DOT’s regional director Dara Cataluna and USEC Myra Valderoza-Abubacar.  They were also one with the participants in the event including the presentation of Finisher Medals, awarding of top finishers and of course, enjoying the food  during the event.

About ZamPen Open Water Swim Circuit

Lake Maragang is the third leg of the ZamPen Openwater Swim Circuit held last April 30, 2023. The first two circuits were held at Onse Islas (11 Islands) in the City of Flowers in Zamboanga City last February 12, 2023 and Buluan Island in Zamboanga, Sibugay last March 19, 2023. The next will be held in Dakak Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte on May 28, 2023.

Visit ZamPen

If you haven’t been to the Zamboanga Peninsula, this is your chance to experience its colorful mix of old and new culture and breathtaking views. You’ll get to tour around the region while enjoying an exciting open water adventure. 

For more information about the ZamPen Open Water Swim Circuit, follow their facebook page: ZamPen Open Water Swim Circuit 2023.

The Zamboanga Peninsula Open Water Swim Circuit is a project of the Department of Tourism, Tourism Promotions Board Philippines, Zamboanga Open Water Swimming Club, Inc, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. 

Support is also provided by the Local Government Units (LGU) of the City Government of Zamboanga, the Provincial Government of Zamboanga Sibugay, the Municipality of Tigbao Zamboanga del Sur, and the City Government of Dapitan Zamboanga del Norte.

Categories: My Travels | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Incoming: Colorfest Asia

Why live in black and white when you can live in colors? Colorfest Asia brings the fun back in the run with a colorful visual display along the run and the post run celebration. It’s happening at Vermosa Grounds on April 30, 2023 and Mall of Asia on May 21, 2023.

Colorfest Asia

Color Runs are back and it’s just getting started! Colorfest Asia returned last March in La Union and it will not only take the Philippines by a colorful storm but it goes for the rest of the region as well. Just imagine combining the thrill of the run with a colorful festival with food and music to liven up the celebration. Run hard and party even harder.

It’s come with a distance of 3k, 5K and 10K that’s perfect for newbies and experienced runners as well. The next two legs is happening in Vermosa, Cavite on April 30, 2023 and Mall of Asia on May 21, 2023. Visit for more details and registration.

Konsulta MD #IWantToBeHere Colorfest

Vermosa has been a world class sports facility situated at Imus, Cavite with close proximity to Metro Manila and it’s a perfect venue for the run and party atmosphere that Colorfest brings. Get an event shirt, race bib, finisher bling and color packets as your basic inclusion at P850 and get an additional inclusions of sunglasses and reusable tote bag when you go premium at P1,350.

Registration Link: Konsulta MD #IWANTTOBEHERE Colorfest

JCI Manila Color Run For Education

Mall of Asia is at the heart of Manila’s running scene that comes with the scenic Manila bay backdrop along the route. JCI Manila Run for Education ins not your usual party and run activity as this one also cause with a noble cause. Your participation and ticket purchase will go a long way in helping us build a school and make a difference in the lives of children who are in dire need of education. Basic registration comes with an event shirt, race bib, color packet and finisher medal while premium registration comes with an event shirt, race bib, color packet, ecobag and sunglasses and finisher medal.

Registration Link: JCI Manila Run for Education

Categories: My Thoughts | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Incoming: The Zampen Open Water Swim Circuit

Open water swim has been the a great way of exploring the country. Race-cation destination just got another location on their list with The Zampen Open Water Swim Circuit featuring the scenic Zamboanga Peninsula with four open water swims happening between February to May, 2023.

The Zampen Openwater Swim Circuit

The Zampen Openwater Swim Circuit Presscon

Last February 4, 2023, The Zampen Openwater Swim Circuit was launched at The City Club in Makati with key officers from Zamboanga City that includes City Tourism Officer Sarita Sebastian Hernandez, DOT Region 9 Director Dara May Cataluna, DOT Region 9 Senior Tourism Officer Charles Anthony, President of Zamboanga Open Water Swim Club and consultant for the Zampen Project Japy Silapan, President of Philippine Swim Inc Ms. Lani Velasco, Members of Zamboanga Open Water Swim Club Alejandro Ong III and Oliver Tan with the COO of Bert Lozada Swim School Angelo Lozada.

The ZamPen Open Water Swim Circuit is a partnership project of the Department of Tourism 9 and the Tourism Promotions Board Philippines. The Local Government Unit (LGU) of Zamboanga, the Provincial Government of Zamboanga Sibugay, the Municipality of Tigbao Zamboanga del Sur, and the City Government of Dapitan Zamboanga del Norte are active partners and supporters of the project.

Zamboanga Peninsula

Zamboanga Peninsula is one of the places in the Philippines where you’ll find a perfect mix of the old and new, the classic and the modern. So-called because of the many traditional flowers aligned on its roadsides, ZamPen is an interesting and colorful visual spectacle of culture, history, nature, and people.  

It may be Mindanao’s smallest region but it is packed with attractions, activities, and places to discover.   Going around the region, you’ll find a unique blend of Spanish, Western, and indigenous architecture. You won’t run out of exciting adventures in ZamPen. 

So, it is no wonder that the region has been chosen as the venue for the Open Water Swim Circuit set to happen starting February 12.

Spearheaded by the Department of Tourism – Region IX, with support from the Tourism Promotions Board Philippines, the event will gather open water swimmers in four different venues across the region. 

The competition has seven major objectives:

  • To promote the human-and-nature connection
  • To promote aquasports tourism under Zamboanga Peninsula Region’s Ecotourism Product Portfolio
  • To re-introduce the region’s existing products
  • To highlight Region 9’s Community-based Sustainable Tourism
  • To educate the participants about the value of habitat conservation and management
  • To encourage Indigenous Community members to join the competition so potential Open Water swimmers can be identified

Aquasports and Tourism

A breathtaking feature of the Open Water Swim Circuit is its concept of moving the activity from one ZamPen location to another, allowing participants to enjoy the expansive sceneries and places of the region. The following are the dates and venues for each circuit of the Swim Event.

On February 12, participants will gather at Onse Islas (11 Islands) in the City of Flowers, Zamboanga City.

After a month, the second leg of the competition will be held at Buluan Island in Zamboanga Sibugay on March 19.

The Open Water Swim Circuit will move to Lake Maragang in Tigbao, Zamboanga del Sur on April 30.

On May, The participants will head off to beautiful Dakak Resort in Dapitan Zamboanga del Norte.

For every leg of the activity, there will be two or three distances – ranging from 1.5KM to 5KM – that participants can register for. 

Admission Fee and Inclusions

For those who want to join the Open Water Swim Circuit, the registration/admission fee is PhP1,200 per person. This includes a swim safety kit, swim cap, swim buoy, towel, finisher shirt and medal, loot bag, and meals and snacks. 

A special award will be given to participants who complete all four legs of the competition. The titles at stake are:

  • Goddess Magwayen of ZamPen OWSC (Goddess of Water)
  • God Agwe of ZamPen OWSC (God of Water)

Trophies will be handed out and the God and Goddess will each be given a t-shirt as well.

Visit ZamPen

If you haven’t been to the Zamboanga Peninsula, this is your chance to experience its colorful mix of old and new culture and breathtaking views. You’ll get to tour around the region while enjoying an exciting open water adventure. 

For more information about the ZamPen Open Water Swim Circuit, get in touch with Tin or Erika at 09053162845. You can also inquire via email at 

The Zamboanga Peninsula Open Water Swim Circuit is a project of the Department of Tourism, Tourism Promotions Board Philippines, Zamboanga Open Water Swimming Club, Inc, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. 

Support is also provided by the Local Government Units (LGU) of the City Government of Zamboanga, the Provincial Government of Zamboanga Sibugay, the Municipality of Tigbao Zamboanga del Sur, and the City Government of Dapitan Zamboanga del Norte.

See you in Zamboanga! 

Categories: My Thoughts | Leave a comment

Year of the Franc 17

2022 is a year of realization. It’s the first year that we are leaning to the normal life. Time was a blur and life was chaotic. I barely felt the year pass by but there was so many things happening like being in a time vortex just seeing moments pass by quickly as they happen.

Year Of The Franc 17

If you ask me, I could count the highlights of the year but I remember so many little moments worth remembering. I guess the big things in life are the little ones. What matters is not only the big goal ahead but those tiny journeys and milestone you hit by the day. It was a blur and you could easily take out January this year as we all were stuck at home dealing with the Omnicron Covid variant. Let’s just sat that 2022 was a year that started mid-February.

February felt like being on life-support and slowly being revived back to the year. It was at this time that I started hiking with my Sound of Music Moment at Mount Batolusong and all out adventure at Agro Forestry reserve. March was my birthday month and it felt ordinary compared to my previous year’s celebration. I’m just glad to discover Mount 360 for my birthday hike, which would end up to be my favorite mountain and a venue of my second trail event for the year.

April, May and June were months on overdrive with me getting back the catch me if you can attitude with hikes and travels in Tanay, Baguio, Bataan, Tagaytay and my first vacation after a long while in Siargao. It was also time for late night cocktails, group lunch treats and a lot of feel-good moments. July was bit of a slowdown as I have work deadlines. August had me enjoying my first family vacation since the pandemic at Blackwood Nature Homes and taking time to go home in Baguio to explore the trails on consecutive days at Mount Ulap, Yellow Trails and Mount Bidawan.

September was about weekend trails and coffee dates. October was a big one with me returning to trail events for On A Trail Mission at Mount Bidawan, doing my first race in more than 2 years and more trail adventures planning the next trail mission. November was the usual recons, attending a wedding and yes, another board meeting. I had my second event in December at Mount 360 and joining the wedding of the century at Las Casas in Bataan and of course, the stressful holiday rush.

2022, In A Nutshell

There were so many good byes in 2022 and a lot of moving on. 2 years post pandemic, a lot of people have realized on what will make them happy. They know what they want more than ever. I too know what makes me tick and one of them is no longer letting petty and melodramatic moments bother me because life is short. We’ve lost so much the past two years, including precious time but in retrospect, I’ll always look back to those days that made me more focused and a lot more appreciative of the NOW. Was it a good year? Well, it was a roller coaster. There were highs and there were lows and I wouldn’t have it any other way. No regrets and pure gratitude.

2023 seems more clearer for me but one thing I learned lately is keep your cards closely and just make your move at the proper time. I’m ready 2023!!!

Categories: My Thoughts | Tags: , | Leave a comment

The Road to OATM2

It’s either I give it my all or nothing at all. That’s how I am when it comes to events and OATM 2 is no exception. It’s tiring yet fulfilling and anytime I’m at the peak of Mount 360 is just a blessing. We’re lucky that blessing came with a rainbow during the event.


When we had On A Trail Mission at Mount Bidawan in October 2, 2022, it was a one time thing for me as I still considered myself retired from events with the last race I organized in December 2019. I really set a very high standard on myself that I end up so exhausted after each event. Then there was a clamor for another OATM and I had the perfect venue for that event.

Mount 360 was my favorite peak, which I discovered this year. It has Panoramic 360 degrees at the summit (check), Short and Sweet Route at 5.6K (check) and a little bit of challenge at 500 meters elevation gain (check). Perfect for a memorable session of trail academy. It was a short pitch to ON Philippines as they were happy with the first OATM. Then we had Lightwater, Vitamin Boost, Dans, Polar, My Daily Collagen, Everyday Athlete and Blackwood Nature Homes.

Despite being so familiar with Mount 360, we made sure that every minor detail was considered. I even had several coordination meetings in Tanay before the event. We also made sure that there was sufficient guide for the event as we wanted to tap local manpower for the events. We had about 20 guides all over the mountain even if the mountain trail is just 2.8 kilometers per way. We’re happy that a part of the fees goes to the community.

Day before the event, we had our final coordination meeting and a final recon of the course. We also sent off Team On Philippines in the afternoon as they would be staying at Cabin at Mount 360, which sits a top of the mountain. Definitely a billion star accommodation. Our team stayed in the comforts of Blackwood Nature Homes, which was conveniently located several kilometers from jump off.

Blackwood Nature Homes

We stayed at Blackwood Nature Homes where we had our meals at Brew Boy and planned the final details of the event. It was raining at the night and I knew from there on it would affect the turn out of the event. It did but we were still able to hit the target with over 70+ people part of the event. I had an early start on event day as I started to ascend at around 5 am. I usually am there to welcome runners at the start of the event but since the main event is at the top of Mount 360, I wanted to make sure that the event village was already set up.

As expected, the trails were wet and muddy coming from the rain the night before and there were some drizzle along the way. I welcome the little bit of rain as the hike felt cooler and hiking along the sea of clouds was a scenic delight. I arrived in the village at around 6 am and it was majestic to see a race village a top the summit at 740 MASL over a sea of clouds early in the morning.

It didn’t take long ’til the fast and moderate wave of runners reached the peak. Mount 360 was a gracious host to the runners with it’s panoramic view of the Sierra Madre mountain range. I love this part of the adventure when participants share their experience along the route. Each having their own story to tell. If there was something unique to my events, it’s always about creating experiences. That’s why even if the course was hard or how tight my schedule gets, I always look forward to the recons. It’s where I get my own experience of the route and it’s the foundation of each of my races and events.

Once we got most of the fast and moderate runners, Noy led the drills which was focused on strengthening the legs. As the legs is a powerful tool for mountain trails. It was a sight seeing the runners in unison with the drills. This was followed by question and answer on trail running, work outs and a lot more. We started the formal trail talks once the walkers wave reached the summit.

I began the talks introducing the brief history of Pinoy Trails since 2016 and how the grouped managed to mount races and trail academies that has reached over 5,000 runners over the years. It’s always a challenge having the newbie market but it’s our sweet spot and its how we can help the community grow. Noy then had his turn to talk where he shared his journey as a runner and then the talk went free flowing that range from training, gear, races, strategy and a lot more. It was really fun to innovate the format of trail academy and having the talk at the top of Mount 360 surrounded the Sierra Madre mountain range was just perfect.

After the talk was the group shot and then the swift descent back to Mount 360 jump off. My heart is full once again. While it takes so much time and effort mounting these events, it’s also the one that makes me feel that in my own little way, I am helping the world shift in the right direction. On to the next trail mission, G?

Categories: My Runs | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

#TaleOfTheTrail Mount 360 (740 MASL) San Andres, Tanay

Was there ever a mountain that mesmerized you and love repeating again and again? That’s Mount 360 for me. It’s only a short hike but packs in the elevation (about 500m of Elevation Gain) and has a really scenic summit. It’s called Mount 360 because it gives you a 360 degrees vantage point of Sierra Madre Mountain Range.

Mount 360

I came to know of Mount 360 when I did a birthday hike last March. It’s not as long as Mount Batolusong but it’s gonna take your breath away in more ways than one. It’s just around 6 kilometers out and back with the first half being pure climb with about 500 meters of Elevation Gain. The summit is breathtaking yet the climb will make you feel breathless with the unlimited climbs. It gets easier once you go at a chill pace and when you divide the climb in shorter stretches.

The Tale Of The Trail

It was love at first hike at Mount 360 and I’ve been in the familiar slopes maybe 4 or 5 times after the first hike. I classify mountains based on efforts and rewards. Mount 360 is moderate in effort but high in reward and here’s why?

  • The summit is 360 degrees panoramic visual delight with the Sierra Madre Mountain Range around you. Mount Batolusong flatlands and summit is visible on one side then Mount Mapalad can be seen on the other side, The summit has also wooden setup including a swing, picnic tables and chairs and a viewing platform. There also rest a Cabin slightly below the summit, which you can actually rent if you want to spend a night on the summit.
  • The route is short (less than 6 kilometers) but remains challenging with about 500 meters worth of elevation gain with some muddy and technical portion.
  • Once you hit the open ridges, it’s a scenic wonderland already.
  • It’s a short but productive workout. Do it in a regular walking pace, you’ll be down the mountain in between 2-3 hours.
  • It’s fast and easy to visit. It’s about 1:30 from Metro Manila via Marcos Highway. Pin Mount Batolusong Jump Off, which is near the basketball court and the San Andres Jump off point. From the Basketball Court, the jump off point is towards the right (opposite the Jump Off point of Batolusong).
  • It’s not so crowded yet unlike the more popular Mount Batolusong.
The Cabin at Mount 360

Let’s hit the trails!!!

First things first, you’ll need to register. It P100 for the environmental fees and P500 for the guide (max of 5 person per guide). Before you go up, I personally advise you to stretch or walk around the road since the trail would immediately goes up. From the jump off point, it starts with a climb over steep local trails. It’s a bit harder at this part since you’re body is still adjusting to the altitude and it’s still warming up. It’s always safe to go slow and steady on this part while dividing the climbs into segments.

After the first 200 meters is steep climb while the next 800 meters are moderate climbs on muddy trails. It’s still a shaded trail at this point with some points of the trail peaking over the other mountain ranges. I take regular breaks at this steps as I don’t want to drain my energy on the steeper part of the trail plus, I would like to look fresh in my summit photos.

The next kilometer is the steep and technical part. I slow down on this part and there are also wooden seats to rest on this stretch. I usually am more conservative on steep ascent being someone who has heart rate that goes up so fast on climbs. It’s easier to go farther when you keep your heart rate down while maximizing rest stops though not over staying that your muscles cool down. Once you hit around 1.8 kilometers, the trail opens up and you see ridges. At this point, you can see the flat lands of Mount Batolusong on your right. Go a few hundred meters and its open ridges. I just love ridges as it’s scenic backgrounds from all angles.

When you hit the open trails, there is just about 300 to 400 meters stretch of climbing until you hit the solar panels and the viewpoint above. This gives you another scenic highlight in the hike and it gets even better heading up. There’s a short climb from this section before you hit a short trail with bamboo plantation heading to the summit of Mount 360.

Once you hit the summit, you’ll just be mesmerized by the view. You can take a short meal, go around the summit, feel the fresh air and just appreciate nature. It’s so rewarding to be at this point while appreciating the mountain ranges. The descent is just a quick one, just be careful on the steep stretches.

On A Trail Mission 2

Wanna explore Mount 360? Explore it with us on December 4, 2022. Visit On A Trail Mission 2 Facebook Page for more details.

Categories: My Travels | Leave a comment