The Old Spanish Trail (OST) is a path that was built and used by the Spaniards centuries ago to connect the provinces of Benguet and Pangasinan. The trail still exists today although it remains single-track and is used mainly by a few mountain climbers and locals who travel on foot.
The Old Spanish Trail 50km route begins with a steep climb to the summit of MOUNT UGO, before dropping towards the picturesque Old Spanish Trail, then several ascents more to another summit before heading towards the finish line in KAYAPA.
From KAYAPA CENTRAL SCHOOL, runners will start heading towards the trailhead in TALECABCAB and ascend eight kilometers through a mix of dirt roads and intermittent stretches of concrete tire paths towards INDUPIT. The climb ends at the INDUPIT JUNCTION where the ANSIPSIP foot trail starts (at 1,866 masl).
Runners will proceed around 2km to the next landmark being BUNDAO (1,835 masl, ~KM10) where AID STATION 1 is located. On their way, runners will turn right upon reaching ANSIPSIP WAITING SHED (1,970 masl, ~KM11) and run towards BARANGAY ANSIPSIP, (~KM 15). From there, runners will go to BACUYAN (1,770 masl), and start the more than 1 kilometer ascent to the summit of MOUNT UGO (2,150 masl), the highest point of the route. All runners must make sure to check in with the race marshal at the peak, who in turn will record every runner’s name and race number.
After summiting, runners will return to BACUYAN JUNCTION, and make a sharp right turn towards the SADDLE / DOMOLPOS WAITING SHED (AID STATION 2), where spring water and trail food will be available. After passing the SADDLE/DOMOLPOS WAITING SHED, they will proceed to the picturesque OLD SPANISH TRAIL. The 11-kilometer, mostly downhill trail will lead to AID STATION 3 at the KAYAPA PROPER WEST MARKET, the lowest point of the route.
All runners are STRONGLY advised to eat, drink and refill here for the long grind ahead. This will be the last food station until CASTILLO VILLAGE (AID STATION 4). KAYAPA PROPER WEST MARKET is also CUTOFF POINT 1 (8:00:00 hours). Runners who do not make the cut-off time here will be disqualified and prevented from resuming the race. From KAYAPA PROPER WEST MARKET, runners will pass rice paddies and a hanging bridge on their way to BARANGAY AMELONG LABENG, which is marked by its Barangay (village) hall, school, worship place and a basketball court.
The next landmark to the SECOND SUMMIT will be a cellular phone site tower. Runners will then exit at the Nueva Vizcaya-Benguet Road, turn left and proceed uphill on a concrete road to the entrance of CASTILLO VILLAGE which is marked by a huge welcome sign, a waiting shed, and a World War II Memorial. The shed also marks the location of AID STATION 4. From this point, runners will take the concrete road of about four kilometers in distance going to the finish line in KAYAPA CENTRAL SCHOOL.