Mount Batolusong, Philippines
Prominence: 0 m, 0 ft
Elevation: 645 meters, 2116 feet
Approx. Isolation: 2.76 km, 1.72 mi
|Latitude/Longitude (WGS84)||14° 38' 20'' N, 121° 19' 19'' E|
14.638815, 121.321979 (Dec Deg)
|County/Second Level Region||Rizal|
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|Mt. Batolusong is one of the ‘latest hits’ in the local hiking scene, its proximity to Manila spurring a spate of interest in the mountain in 2012 and onwards. It is located between Brgy. Cuyambay and Brgy. San Andres in Tanay, Rizal, pretty much in the same direction as Sta. Ines, the jumpoff of the more popular and more difficult Mt. Irid. It is often compared to nearby Mt. Sembrano, because of some similarities in the two mountains’ grassland slopes; Batolusong may be thought of a ‘closer and easier’ version of Sembrano.|
Mt. Batolusong is just one of the many potential hiking destinations in Tanay, since the town is part of the southern tailend of the Sierra Madre, the longest mountain range in the Philippines. The fact that there has been a lot of interest about this mountain augurs well for an ‘eastern push’ in explorations that can very well see more outlying Sierra Madre peaks becoming popular hikes – either as dayhikes or overnighters – from Manila.
Previously, the recommended jumpoff was Sitio Kay-ibon, Brgy. Cuyambay, just along the Marcos highway. However, since entry using this trailhead has recently been prohibited by local authorities. For this reason, I am adopting Brgy. San Andres as the major jumpoff in this itinerary. Moreover, the trail is very nice from San Andres, passing through some interesting rock formations, and featuring a nice ascent through woodlands up to the Duhatan Ridge leading to Mapatag Plateau.
Mapatag Plateau (645m) can be the final endpoint of the hike; it is a grassland slope that serves as a scenic viewpoint and a possible campsite. Actually, for some locals, “Batolusong” refers to this plateau and the valley next to it. However, it is also possible to go to Susong Dalaga Peak (780m est.) which takes about two hours from Mapatag Plateau according to our San Andres-based guides Boboy and Michael. The itinerary below anticipates various preferences. Should the Sitio Kay-ibon Trail open, a traverse is very possible from San Andres, and vice-versa. Moreover, Kay-Ibon Falls, a little farther off the trail, is a nice detour. Surely, there are many other possibilities in the area!
© Pinoy Mountaineer
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