South Peak of the North (Mt. Arayat Expedition – 1,004m Elevation)

… “She won’t know we took home fruits and animals. They’re so plentiful, she won’t know the difference.” Because of the locals’ greediness, Sinukuan appeared before them and turned them into swine. She made fruit trees and animals disappear and from then on, she never allowed the villagers to see her again. The legend of the mountain goddess that enfolds Mt. Arayat.

A day spent at the deck of south peak. Our bodies not warmed up and trained for hikes like this yet we still pushed through. Thanks to Sir MRP for the wheels that brought us to the foot, and for those travelling by means of private vehicle, just take Simon exit at NLEX. Mount Arayat National Park which is located at San Juan Baño in Arayat, Pampanga is one of the entry points to reach the summit. We started the trek at around 0930AM after buying foods for lunch in a local carinderia (though it is advisable that you start early and bring packed-lunch if you’re really into short budget). And off we go…

After several flights of steps, I can already hear someone panting behind me. =)

Make sure that you wear something that will cover your arms and legs for mosquito-bites (perhaps, you can bring off-lotion). One more thing, bring enough water with you; there’ll be no source of water once you’re in there.

And finally we reached the peak at around 0130PM (4 hours the most, depending on your pace). The Southern Peak offers view of Central Luzon, including the Pampanga River.

We started to descend at 0200PM and reached the base by 0400PM (1 ½ to 2 hours estimate). Overall, we paid a fee of P1,100 (P275 per pax) for the two guides though based from other blog reviews, P500 is already reasonable. With limited time and money, our little weekend club survived Maria Sinukuan.

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