Rain Falls on Hulugan Falls

Rain Falls on Hulugan Falls

Exposition

 "Wag na! Wang tumuloy" (Fine, Let's not push through) was the last message that I read from my cousin in our chat group before I unintentionally dozed off that night. One can feel the disappointment in that message. Well, who wouldn't? This trip had long been planned however, it had been raining heavily since 7PM that day. The older members of the family were already discouraging us to push through, out of concern and fear that there might be landslides or flash floods. 

From 13 to 9... Hulugan Falls here we come!

Well,  wasn't able to see how the conversation ended or what consensus our group had that night as the next thing I knew was that my 3AM alarm was already yelling at me. I immediately checked outside and discovered that it was still drizzling but the light from my brother's window shone brightly from across the street giving me hope that the trip will push through and true enough it did but not without casualties. From the original 13 that confirmed, our group was trimmed down to 9.

Off to Luisiana, Laguna

From our house in Cavite, my siblings and I drove to San Pedro, Laguna in our two-car convoy to pick up our cousins. We left San Pedro for Luisiana, Laguna at around 6AM. The trip was fast as there was little to no traffic. However, there were times when it would rain very hard which is a point that dampened my spirit. I kept my mouth shut so as not to "infect" my cousins with my negative thoughts. On the other hand, I celebrated with them whenever we pass through towns that are "dry" or whenever, the sun would take a peek from the dark clouds. 

Arrived at the Registration Area in Barangay San Salvador 

Orientation with our guide Tatay Juaning

Hulugan Falls Parking area - vast and safe

Tricycle transfer going to the jump-off point

We reached Barangay San Salvador, Luisiana in Laguna a little around 9AM. We were told to stop at the registration area where we paid a registration fee of 40 pesos per person. We were also required to listen to a 10-minute orientation. After this, we drove to the vast parking area where we were then asked to transfer to tricycles that would bring us to the jump-off point. These tricycles are only allowed to carry a maximum of 3 people. Tricycle fare is 20 pesos per person. 

Visiting Talay Falls and Hidden Falls

From the jump-off point, we walked down some man-made steps until we reached a muddy trail which gave us the impression that this hike would be, in a way, a challenge for most of us because almost everyone was wearing sandals. Aside from that, it was still drizzling when we reached the jump-off point and the fear of landslides and flash floods still plays in our heads. Our guide Tatay Juaning, probably sensing this assured us that it was safe as long as we follow his instructions and also hike with caution. 

Jump-off point - Start of the hike

Rains = muddy trail

First stop - Talay Falls

Family pic at Talay Falls

In under 30 minutes, we reached the first of three waterfalls in our itinerary - Talay Falls. There are benches here where we got to leave our stuff to take photos of the multi-tiered falls. We also didn't miss the chance to take group photos here. 

Prepare for a bit of ascend using the attached rope. 

Next stop - Hidden Falls

To get closer to Hidden Falls you need to "survive" the Face the Wall. 

Don't worry it's not that hard, ask my cousin Raeyan.

Just behind Talay Falls is a much larger waterfall called Hidden Falls. Looking at it, the water falling from Talay Falls actually comes from Hidden Falls. There were plenty of Instagrammable spots in the vicinity of these falls. You can actually take a photo on a rock situated halfway down the gushing waters of Hidden Falls. To get there, visitors need to pass through what is dubbed as the  "Face the Wall" Rock. It's aptly named as such due to the fact that the best way to navigate through is by hugging this wall of rock and slowly inching to the other side. 

You can go to the rock near the falls for that picture-perfect shot. 

We got to go near the gushing falls of Hidden Falls

The Backpack Adventures reaches Hidden Falls

From Hidden Falls, we backtracked and reached the benches near Talay Falls where we decided to eat our delicious lunch of adobo and tomatoes prepared by my cousin Eloi. Afterward, we rested for a bit before pushing to our 3rd and final waterfalls - Hulugan Falls.

The Majestic Hulugan Falls

It was still drizzling when we left the benches near Talay Falls. Our guide Tatay Juaning led the way through several river crossings to reach the side of a cliff with an amazing panoramic view of the valley with Hulugan Falls right in the middle. Interestingly, the trail to Hulugan Falls was in most of the time parallel to the trail that we passed thru going to Talay Falls. 

We had several river crossings to get to Hulugan Falls

Another river crossing

Then we had to pass through the Pandan Forest too.

Hulugan Falls as seen from the side of the cliff



To reach the cliff, we had to pass through the famed Pandan Forest which looked like survived the prehistoric era. I later learned that this area is also the campsite if one chooses to stay overnight. From this area, the cliffside trail down to Hulugan Falls is just several meters away. The trail going down to Hulugan Falls is made easy by the bamboo guard rails and the steps carved by the locals. However, it was still raining and the trail was muddy and slippery so we took a lot of caution during our descent. 

Photos we took near Hulugan Falls





Once we reached the bottom of the cliff-side trail, we had to walk several more meters and then cross another river to reach Hulugan Falls thankfully there are large rocks that we used to reach the other side of the river. I had several awesome photos on these rocks thanks to my sister Aya. We were allowed to go near the waterfalls but we skipped the swimming activity due to safety reasons. 

Time to head back to the jump-off point

There is a rest area after the steep ascent

After admiring the beauty of the 285-foot tall Hulugan Falls and also taking hundreds of photos, we decided to wrap up our Hulugan Falls Adventure. From the falls, we hiked up another steep cliff and reached a rest area where there are benches and a picture area with a huge I LOVE HULUGAN FALLS which means another photo opportunity. From this area, the jump-off point is about a 5-minutes hike away. 

I LOVE HULUGAN FALLS

The Backpack Adventures visits Hulugan Falls

The family that travels together, stays together

Road Home

Our road trip didn't end there though, we still had time to visit the historic Lucban Church in the town of Lucban in Quezon province that afternoon. Aside from that, we didn't miss going on a food trip. From there, we drove home via the Liliw-Majayjay Road then the Nagcarlan-Rizal Road before continuing on the Pan-Philippine Highway then SLEX until we reach home

Lucban Church

Lucban's Pancit Habhab

I šŸ’— LUCBAN

Overall, the rain that we feared turned out to be a friend in disguise. According to our guide, Hulugan Falls is usually flocked by hundreds of people during the weekends or during holidays but during this hike, we could actually count the people visiting the falls. Aside from that, the rain also boosted the beauty of the three falls by adding volume to their water flow. With that, I think it's safe to say that the rain did in fact turned out to be a blessing.

So with that, I highly encourage you to visit Hulugan Falls. Rain or shine, it's one of those destinations worth visiting.

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