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.
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.
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.