Most people probably heard and experienced the beauty ranges of Mt. Batulao but most people do not know as well the charm of its “younger sister”, Mt. Talamitam, has to offer. Mt. Talamitam is located on the other side of Mt. Batulao in Nasugbu, Batangas. The mountain got its name from the “Talamitam trees” that used to grow on its slopes but sad to say the tree no longer exists on the highland.
Though Mt. Talamitam does not have the mountain range landscapes as grand as those found in Mt. Batulao, it has a huge grassland next to the summit that will makes you feel stepping on the rolling hills of Batanes or New Zealand!
How to get there?
Manila to Mt. Talamitam
From Manila ride a Nasugbu bound bus (DLTB or BSC) and asked the driver to drop you off in Mt. Talamitam drop off point (that is before Sitio Bayabasan Basketball court). Then you have to charter a tricycle that will take you to the registration point in Brgy. Kayrilaw.
Laguna to Mt. Talamitam
If you will be coming from Laguna, you can ride a Nasugbu bound van from Balibago Complex (Fare is P150) and asked the driver to drop you off in Mt. Talamitam drop off point (that is before Sitio Bayabasan Basketball court). Then you have to charter a tricycle that will take you to the registration point in Brgy. Kayrilaw.
Mt. Talamitam has now a new trail that passes through Brgy. Kayrilaw. After the bus drop off in Nasugbu hiway, you actually need to ride a tricycle going to the registration point in Brgy. Kayrilaw but we didn’t take the drivers advice. We decided to start our trek from the hiway and it took as an hour to reach the registration area. We already got tired of the 3 km walk before starting the real trek (haha!).
The old trail actually passes through Sitio Bayabasan in Brgy. Aga. According to the person in charge in registration point, one part of the old trail passes through a private property and the owner no longer allows any hiker to pass through the property. The registration is P50/person and tour guide is required to reach the summit. Tour guide fee is P500/group. We were 14 in the group and they required us to have 2 tour guides for this journey.
According to the locals, the new trail is actually longer but easier compared to the old trail. At first, you will pass through the forest like trail, the way is manageable until you reach the first jump off point where series of stores are situated selling variant of foods like hotdogs, barbeque, fishballs and even banana cake! As per the locals, horses are the their means of transporting goods to the mountain top. Imagine how strong their horses are?
After taking a rest on the first drop off, we walked through the woodland again. By this time the way is becoming steeper and challenging. There are moderate slopes and many trail disparities until you reach the wide grassland where the Talamitam peak lies. The scene is picturesque that it takes us time to capture its beauty. This part will give you a “Batanes feels” so you can get as many worthy pictures as you want. This part of the trail is an open green field without any trees or shade so the trek can be very exhausting due to the direct heat of the sun. There is another store on this point where you can quench your thirst with their cold drinks and where you can rest for a while before you can start your trek again on the last assault before reaching the summit. I already felt the exhaustion at this point of the trek that takes me time in reaching the peak. Since the last assault is really steep, I literally took a rest every minute before finally reaching its mesmeric summit.
At the peak, you can reward yourself with a Halo-Halo being sold by the only store on the peak. The view from the summit is mesmerizing making your trek a worthy one. The view is so dreamy and makes you feel happy and fulfilled that you did something you never thought you could. The green plateau and the summit for me is the most scenic view I had on the whole trail. We rest for a while and when we got enough photos and rest, we decided to start our descend at 4PM.
How long did it take?
As per the locals, the trek should only take 2 hours per way or a total of 4 hours but on our case it took us almost 8 hours to finish the whole trail. The trek time is acceptable since the walking from the hiway that started about 10:30 AM already consumed our time and energy which can be saved if we ride a tricycle. Since we are 14 in the group with few first timers, we took a lot of rest time and talk with the locals on both ascend and descend. We reached the registration point of Brgy, Kayrilaw at 6:30 PM and ate Batangas Lomi and Arrozcaldo near the Baranggay outpost.
What Realizations I Got?
I am not used to physical activities that requires strength and stamina or for short, I am not your sporty gal. When I am in grade school, my teacher would always let me stay beside or sit during our PE class since I have this allergy that comes out every time I sweat or stay under the heat of the sun (I already overcome that allergy now!). So each time I decided to go up to the mountains, I always tell myself that “I won’t be doing it again!”. I can easily judge myself based on my known capabilities without knowing that there’s still more of myself that I can give. But after all the struggles that I have every hike and telling myself that this won’t happen again, I always eat my words and do it again next time. Maybe it’s the irony of life like how we still decided to love even how many times we got hurt or how we still decided to forgive someone regardless how painful the mistakes they given us. Because at the end of the day, we need to focus on the beauty that we can get from love and forgiveness that we decided to give like how we focus on the beauty that awaits us in the mountain summit. I think we just need not to let our pain and struggles hinder us from getting the greatness we deserve and always remember that somewhere between the lowest ground and the mountain top is the journey that makes you believe that you CAN.
Have you ever been to Mt. Talamitam before? Share your experience below.