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Trek to Bugnay, KalingaJun 18, 2011

Trek to Bugnay, Kalinga

Catching the Last Trip
We only stayed about 25 minutes in Buscalan until we resumed our hike to Bugnay where we had to catch the last trip heading to Tinglayan. If we missed that 2:00 pm jeep, it would be an 11 kilometer walk back to Tinglayan under punishing heat. After 90 minutes of hiking, we finally reached the waiting shed for the jeep. It was 1:00 pm - we didn't miss the last jeep. Although we were in Bugnay, we didn't really cross the river to actually go into the village.

A Head in 1950
While waiting for the jeep, there was an old man who just came to me, and mimicing a machete with the blade of his hand, put the edge of his hand on my neck and said, "1950". The message was clear - he cut-off a head in 1950. Instead of feeling afraid, I was relieved. It means head-hunting hasn't been practised here for 60 years! I wanted to have a conversation with him, and I sensed he was equally eager to have someone pay attention to him. But we couldn't understand each other. In frustration (or perhaps he was just tired), he just slept in the shed. A young villager (mid 20s) who was also in the shed told me that the old man used to be an NPA commander in the fight for the Chico Dam during the 70s.

About Head Hunting
The same guy also went on talking about the head-hunting issue. In a defensive tone, he denied that any head-hunting ever took place. He claimed that it was a malicious gossip that spread around the region. Hmmm...this only shows how much the younger generation hurts from the stigma of head-hunting and would like to veer as much as possible away from it - even go as far as denying it. They feel left out from the mainstream and would like to integrate themselves back.

Another Uncleared Landslide
A passing vehicle passed and offered me and my guide a lift back to Tinglayan. Cool! On a road section with uncleared landslide, it became too scary going over the mound. We all got off and walked it until it was safe to go inside the vehicle again. My guide told me it gets scarier when the rains are in and the tires spin its wheels as it slides slightly sideways. Whoa! I wonder if any vehicle has fallen off the ravine because of uncleared landslides!

Another Night at Tinglayan
Upon my arrival in Tinglayen, it was already too late to catch the next jeep/bus to the Tomiangan junction in Pacil where I am to catch the jeep going to my next destination, Balbalasang. I had to stay overnight at the Sleeping Beauty Hotel in Tinglayan.

Mr. Bawer of Lubuagan
The following day, I found out that the earliest jeep out of Tinglayan to Tomiangan was already too late to catch the jeep to Balbalasang. Dilemma! Now, I have to stay another night either at Tabuc (the capital of Kalinga) or the closer municipality of Lubuagan. Upon the behest of my guide who knew a certain Mr. Bawer in Lubuagan, I chose Lubuagan to spend a night instead.

--- TheLoneRider

How to Get to Bugnay from Buscalan:
  • There is no public transport for this one. Take a guide - actually, you should have already taken one before going to Tulgao.
Travel Tips:
  • bring lots of matches. That'll be your currency. Give matches to those who offer you food, to those whose pictures you took, etc.
  • when offered food or water, take it! It tells them you can be trusted.

01smallfalls 02bugnay_village 03bus_stop 04waiting_shed
05scooter 06old_man 07uncleared_washout 08hanging_bridge
09broken_faucet 10tired 11tripod_deer 12dominador_teves

These guys like this story:













Viveca HutchinsonViveca Hutchinson
(Aug 10, 2011) you're lucky to meet colorful people of the's pretty boring in Manila

David PoupinDavid Poupin
(Aug 10, 2011) I experienced the same story, true strory...but it was in Why Not bar in Dumaguete, completly different of Kalinga, two weeks ago, a strange guy mimicing a machete while i was drinking my beer. Does it mean that head-hunting is still practised in Dumaguete? :-)

Cha SantiagoCha Santiago
(Aug 10, 2011) scary naman yun Gigit? buti walang nangyari syo?

Ninoy LeyranNinoy Leyran
(Aug 10, 2011) Baka 1,950 na tao na napugutan nya hehe. I remember the time nasa Lubo/Lobo tribe kami. Binuhat ko yung sibat nila dun sa room and naisip ko kung gano kalakas ka para matapon mo yun sa kalaban mo hehe.

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