A visit to Sagada is not complete without doing one or two of its more popular activities –
trek to Bomod-ok falls, explore Sumaging cave or
traverse to Lumiang. If you are a thrill-seeker, than you MUST do all three and more. If, however, you’re not as daring,
I would still recommend venturing out to the falls, if only for the scenery.
If doing such a thing is stepping out of your comfort zone, here are some tips on how to prepare for it and what not to miss while at it. You’ll never know what might spark after this experience. One has to start somewhere, I certainly did and trekking these terraces started my love for the outdoors more than a decade ago.
1. Take a heavy breakfast
Lots of carb. You’ll need the energy – for sure!
2. Bring lots of water
You’ll want to hydrate even if you don’t feel the heat. Walking 3-4 hours even on cool weather will definitely make you sweat.
3. Wear swimwear underneath
I’m a sissy. I could never brave the icy water. The refreshingly blue pool however entices many and you might be one of them. Be prepared.
4. Wear good footwear
Nothing ruins a good trek more than the wrong footwear. Make sure you use a comfortable pair of walking shoes preferably with good traction. I discourage using Crocs, as much as I find them comfortable – it is not made for trekking. A good pair of rubber shoes is fine.
5. Use a light jacket
Unless it’s sometime between Nov-Feb when the weather is coldest, a light rain jacket should suffice to protect you from the wind and keep you dry when it rains. A thick jacket will be too hot once you start to perspire.
6. Book a guide
Very important. Even if it is the nth time to trek the path, one is still obliged to register at the Sagada Tourist Center near the town hall and book a guide for the group. This is to make sure that everyone is accounted for after every activity.
7. Exhibit proper decorum
Talk to the village folks, don’t just snap away. Give way to uphill trekkers and those carrying heavy stuff. Also, don’t let the faster trekkers intimidate you, let them go first.
8. Take lots of photos
You’ll be walking along the terraces with the mountains on the background, you’ll kick yourself for leaving that camera behind. There are pretty sites after pretty sites so don’t forget the camera.
9. Bring snacks along
I prefer trail mixes to chips – they’re healthier. I combine mixed nuts and dried fruits (I like raisins, cranberries and some dried mangoes cut into bite-sized pieces). This will get you by until lunch.
10. Prep the body
Prior to the trek, walk more either around your neighborhood or on a treadmill. This way, your body will not take too much of a beating after a wonderful adventure.