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Your manang's thoughts & sojourns spewed into words.

A Birthday Climb at Mt Manalmon, Bulacan

I officially turned 25 this year. What now? It's been 3 weeks since I had my LASIK procedure. My eyes are pretty well already and the next thing I wanted to do was to test how far can I go with this new vision. So I decided to go out and satisfy my need for some outdoor activity (mountain climbing perhaps?). 

I know, that seems a little risky. I remember climbing a mountain in Mayantoc, Tarlac when I was in high school. That's roughly 10 years ago but I can still feel how great the experience was. I can walk, swim, cross rivers, trek to some falls, go to places via moving vehicles but I rarely climb so I was really excited to do it again.

Mt Manalmon Dayhike

It was Saturday morning (a day before my birthday) when I dragged Olan to accompany me on a climb to Mt Manalmon in Bulacan. Ha! I love the perks of being an oDesk freelance contractor (time flexibility and location independence). I am able to travel whenever I want (of course as long as I've done my scheduled tasks already). I can't just leave some work hanging (that's very irresponsible).

We boarded a bus bound for San Miguel, Bulacan and disembarked at Camias road at past 12 noon. We had a quick bite and rode a tricycle to Sitio Madlum. Unfortunately, one of the tricycle's tire deflated on our way to Sitio Madlum, so we had to wait for almost an hour to have it fixed in a vulcanizing shop. We arrived at Sitio Madlum at around 2 in the afternoon and the long Madlum River welcomed us. We then rode a balsa, registered and paid for a guide (fyi guides in Mt Manalmon are required).

Mt Manalmon is part of the Biak na Bato National Park in Bulacan. According to pinoymountaineer,
Mt Manalmon is 196 MASL (meters above sea level). Most likely a hill rather than a mountain. But what I like most about Mt Manalmon is its easy access from Metro Manila, you can reach it in less than 3 hours. Aside from hiking and camping, everyone can also try other activities such as spelunking, zip-lining and river crossing via the monkey bridge.

Madlum River Bulacan
the Madlum River
someone is crossing the monkey bridge, looks fun!
station of the cross 

The trail to Mt Manalmon is very well-established (friendly for beginners like me). We passed through a station of the cross, entered the Madlum Cave, crossed the Madlum river and walked through a forested trail all the way to the summit. We took our time and rested twice. The only challenge (I think) was traversing the Madlum Cave. The cave was dark and slippery but anyone can safely pass through it (you just need to be very careful). In less than an hour, we have reached the summit of Mt Manalmon. That's in a normal walking speed.

At the peak of Mt Manalmon, we saw the neighboring Mt Gola. We also saw Mt Arayat and some part of the Sierra Madre mountain range. The view of the rock formations and the Madlum River from the summit was truly beautiful. We saw some birds freely soaring in the sky and it was such a visual delight. We also enjoyed the cool breeze on top of the mountain. It was such a rejuvenating experience. I am very thankful for the unusually fine weather we encountered that time. We don't usually experience a sunny weather on my birth month (July).

Mt Manalmon Dayhike
view of Mt Arayat taken from Mt Manalmon summit
Mt Gola Mt Manalmon Bulacan
the neighboring Mt Gola
Mt Manalmon, Madlum River
the madlum River
panoramic view of Mt Gola and the Madlum River taken from the summit of Mt Manalmon
Mt Manalmon Bulacan
atop Mt Manalmon

After spending an hour on the summit, we decided to start our descent. We took the same trail and we've reached the registration area in less than 50 minutes. Overnight camping can be done but we just went there for a day hike. Nonetheless, it was a short but very satisfying day hike.

Mountain climbing is truly an exciting and humbling experience. Much respect for mountains. You realize how small you are when you're at the summit overlooking the mighty nature. The long walk, gradual ascents, and scorching heat can be really draining but the reward is totally worth all the muscle pain. I am thankful that I had my vision restored and I get to appreciate the beauty of my surroundings more. And I must say that hiking and wandering through the woods isn't just a physically rewarding activity but also a soul-nurturing kind of experience.

How to go to Mt Manalmon

  • Take any Cabanatuan/Nueva Ecija via San Miguel, Bulacan bus from Cubao (we rode a FiveStar, Nueva Ecija via San Miguel bus for P117 and disembarked at Brgy Kamias, San Miguel Bulacan)
  • Ride a tricycle bound for Sitio Madlum
  • Arrive at jump-off point
  • Register and pay for the guide fee 300 (required)
  • Start trek and enjoy!
10 comments on "A Birthday Climb at Mt Manalmon, Bulacan"
  1. Hi ms. joyce! How much is the tricycle fee? And is it possible to go alone since may tour guide naman pala? :) Thank you!

    1. Hi Jane!

      It is very possible to go there alone kasi may guide naman. Pero I won't recommend it for a girl. Go get a buddy nalang! I remember paying P200 for 2pax per way (duo lang kasi kami nagpunta hehe). Mas tipid pag mas marami kasi 250 for 5 pax na buong tricycle ang talagang fee. Enjoy and be safe!

  2. Hi MJ, ano po ba dapat namin dalhin kpag 2 days kame?


    1. Bring the usual camping equipment and necessary food/things you would need to survive if you plan to have an overnight stay.

  3. Hi joyce, is there any parking area out there..if there is, how much do you think will cost us for overnight stay?

    1. Hi Gweish, unfortunately, I do not know any info about its parking areas/fee for private vehicles.

  4. Hi! really inspiring post :) I guess I am having my first summit in less than a month.

    1. Thanks Christeen! Good luck and enjoy your first summit!

  5. ang cute!! hehe

    Nice post!


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