Climbing two summits in a day is a daunting idea. The fact that you have to exert almost twice as much time and effort made me think if it was possible to finish before sundown. I got curious and so off we went to Nasugbu Batangas to climb the peaks of Mt. Talamitam and Mt. Apayang.
Our guide for the day was a local named Zaldy. He assured us that it will be an easy hike to the top. The trek to the summit usually takes about two to three hours. Good thing! We decided to take our time and keep a slower than usual pace just to save energy and enjoy the views even more.
We had the option to traverse from Mt. Talamitam and then head back down the foresty trails of Mt. Apayang which will take us another four hours, or go back to the barren trails of Mt. Talamitam after reaching the Apayang peak to take another route to Layong Bato. We chose the latter.
The back road going to the trails was a bit rough for vehicles but is pleasurable to any hikers’ feet. Stores, houses, and home-stays were lined up along the road and the running water of the river could be heard.
We were then lead to a bamboo bridge to finally begin the assault to Mt. Talamitam.
There wasn’t much shade from the scorching heat of the sun which made the seemingly easy hike to be a bit challenging. Good thing I brought an extra water bottle in case I have to pour some on my face to dissipate the heat.
After a few minutes, we were welcomed by the site of Mt. Talamitam’s sister mountain, Mt. Batulao. Standing above the horizon, Mt. Batulao could easily be seen anywhere from where we were. Its jumpoff is just a few kilometers away from Sitio Bayabasan that it is possible to do a trilogy hike.
We took a quick rest under a balete tree to get ready for the open trails. The next section didn’t have any shade and the almost cloudless sky wasn’t helping at all. We readied ourselves after the five minute break and moved on.
Our guide wasn’t even re-hydrating as we chugged down on our bottles because of the heat! He said he was already used to climbing Mt. Talamitam with lesser resources. I offered him my bottle but he politely declined, saying that he was still okay.
The majestic sight of Mt. Batulao was just breathtaking! We couldn’t help but take our time and enjoy the views while we take photos of each other with the neighboring mountain in the background.
We continued to hike to the barren section of the mountain. The summit of Mt. Talamitam could be seen from this point, the smooth trails was a good trade-off from the skin-burning, inescapable heat! This reminded me of our Mt. Sembrano climb last year and its energy draining hotness.
The trail was becoming a bit grassy as we headed farther. We moved along until we reached the resting area. We bought some refreshments from the store as we took a longer rest from the shade. What a relief!
The next path was a fork that leads to the summit. The right was the difficult route while the left was the easier one. We didn’t hesitate to choose the easier path.
It was still an open area and the sun was pointed directly towards us at this point. Good thing the rocky assault was manageable as we headed to the grassy part of the mountain.
The cogon grasses were everywhere! But the overgrowth were futile in covering us from the sun as we took several stops just to catch our breath.
After a few more minutes of scrambling to the stony and grassy assault, we were finally welcomed by the protruding rocks of the summit! I also noticed a figure of Mary on it. I muttered a short thank you prayer for our safety before marveling at the amazing views from the top of Mt. Talamitam.
The views were spectacular! The plains from the lowlands, the mountain ranges of Batangas, and other sites from South Luzon could be seen everywhere! Clear skies and sunny weather make the climb more difficult than usual but I think it pays off once you reach the summit. You can see the well-saturated surroundings, there aren’t any clouds to block the view, and you can see interesting vantage points from afar! Just bring extra water to pour some on yourself to avoid heat exhaustion.
Next destination is the summit of Mt. Apayang. I thought it would be a difficult climb but the summit of Mt. Talamitam and Mt. Apayang are only about 100 meters apart. Technically, they are both one mountain with two peaks that are being handled by two different Barangays.
The trek took us about 40 minutes to reach Mt. Apayang. Cogon grasses were everywhere making it difficult for us to see the trail. The steeper part going to the top was shaded and I have noticed that Mt. Apayang has a greener environment compared to Mt. Talamitam.
We have finally reached the second summit! It was amazing to think that we were standing on another peak just less than an hour ago!
We already got used to the heat at this point and we stayed longer to enjoy the views. The Batangas mountain ranges were still seen, and our guide showed us several points of interests such as Mt. Pico de Loro and Mt. Marami in Cavite.
We headed down to go to the waters of Layong Bato after taking a short nap and cooling off with some fresh buko salad ice cream sold by a local on the summit.
I thought we had to go back to the top of Mt. Talamitam but our guide lead us to a trail going down to the barren plateau where we came from.
Several stops and long rests made us reach the river at around 230pm. A good hike for me is when you take your time and not rush things. It may take longer but at least you have ample time to rest, take photos or even take a nap! Of course the pacing still varies depending on the mountain and its difficulty, but the hike we did in Mt. Talamitam was a gentle one because of its friendly trails.
It was an hour of hike going to Layong bato. We have finally reached our last stop and carefully crossed its streams. I took another nap (what a lazy hiker!) to catch up on my missed hours the night before. We stayed there for more than an hour and then prepared to go back to the jump-off.
It only took us about 10 minutes to reach the jump-off! It was a surprise for me to find out that the gushing sound of the river that we heard when we started was that of Layong Bato.
We went past the campsite and settled at the jump-off thus concluding our twin day hike.
- Height: Mt. Talamitam: 630+ masl / Mt. Apayang: 662 masl
- Jump-off point: Mt. Talamitam: Sitio Bayabasan, Brgy. Aga, Nasugbu / Mt. Apayang: Brgy. Mataas na Pulo
- Days required/ Hours to summit: 1 day / 1.5-2.2 hours (Backtrail) +4 hours (traverse)
- Specs: Minor climb, Difficulty 3/9, Trail class 1-3 with steep assault (100m)
- Dubbed as the “Little sister” of Mt. Batulao.
- Named after the talamitam trees that used to thrive on its surface.
By Private vehicle via SLEX:
- Exit to Sta. Rosa and head straight to Tagaytay.
- Turn right and head straight until you reach Tagaytay – Nasugbu Highway
- Head straight until you pass by Evercrest Golf Course (Mt. Batulao Jumpoff )
- Continue straight ahead until you reach Kilometer 83 (Mt. Talamitam Jumpoff)
By Public Vehicle:
- Take a bus in Coastal Mall to KM. 83 (P120, 2.5 hours).
- Alternatively, you can also head to any Pasay bus terminals with buses bound to Nasugbu.
- Guide fee: Mt. Talamitam: 500php per group (May vary depending on the size of the group), Talamitam – Apayang Traverse: 800php
- Our guide, Zaldy was nice enough to give us his mobile number: 09061486928