Tag Archives: Kabayan

Signal Here

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The only spot with reception at Baban's Homestay in Mt Pulag

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Kabayan Okoy

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Vegetable okoy (fritter)

In a town where commercial vegetable farming is the livelihood of the folks apart from guide services in hiking Mt Pulag, it’s no wonder then that their okoy variation is vegetarian. Okoy is shrimp fritter normally, but there’s no shrimp in Kabayan, so what they have is vegetable okoy.

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Translation: Vegetable okoy for a complete life

Visually, I was able to discern grated carrots only because I was too hungry to find out the rest of the ingredients. I ate two pieces of hot okoy. I got one each from the two vendors situated strategically near the gate of Mt Pulag National Park at the ranger station. It was the best okoy I had probably because I just came from a long mountain hike and was longing for a hot meal.

Mountain School

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Mt Pulag Primary School at 7,748 feet above sea level

This primary school is situated 7,748 feet above sea level in the mountain town of Kabayan. There’s a sign out front that says “It takes a village to raise a child and a community to take care of the mountain. ” The school also has creative toilet signs depicting gender in traditional dresses.

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Toilet signs

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Just believe...ok?

Not the Garden of Eden

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The view of vegetable gardens in Kabayan may look pretty but their presence meant the destruction of endemic plants and animals, forest cover, and watersheds. Thus, the conversion of more land in Mount Pulag National Park into vegetable gardens is a big concern of DENR. If the remaining pine forest, mossy forest and the grassland of Mount Pulag will become vegetable gardens, then it’s a horror story of the 21st century.

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Benguet Jeepneys

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Reminds me of John Denver

These are the mountain jeepneys seen along the Benguet-Nueva Vizcaya Road. Most of them are chartered ones traveling between Baguio and Kabayan.

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Pulag Episode

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Hiker moment above the clouds

Hiking up the long but easy trail from the ranger station to one of the peaks of Mount Pulag three hours before sunrise was pleasant, notwithstanding it was still dark. Upon reaching Peak 2, we waited for few minutes just in time for the sun to come out behind the clouds. It was amazing looking down at the clouds while still on land, albeit on top of the mountain.

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Pre-sunrise view

When the sun was already way too high, as indicated by the transition of golden light to white light, it was time to ascent to the summit, still fairly easy. Up there, shadow casts on the summit marker and it was tempting to pee in the middle of the thick dwarf bamboo bushes (but of course I didn’t).

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Sunrise

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Blinding light

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The marker on the summit

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The bushes on the summit

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