Sneak Peek of the Soleus Cross Country Challenge 2018

While many of our local trail runners are busy preparing for their respective trail races in the coming weeks and months, most of them can be seen during weekends, gutting out around the mountain trails of Parawagan, Ayaas, Pintong Bukawe, Inigan, and Malasya among many others, all located in the mountains of Rodriguez, particularly in Wawa, Rizal.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing, tree, outdoor and nature

These groups of trail runners are somewhat eclectic, some are elite/hardcore, others, members of running groups and the rest, newbies who tough it out with the veterans, pushing their bodies on those uphill climbs and be rewarded with amazing views and moments of ecstasy whenever they reach the top.

Wawa has become a hotbed for trail runners. While there have been spectacular races held in Wawa and in the vicinity of Pintong Bukawe, one local yearly favorite is the Soleus Cross Country Challenge (SCCC2018) now on its 3rd year.

If your idea of a trail run includes crossing rivers, a hanging bridge and standing on top of a popular mountain peak that gives the best views of Mt. Binakayan and Mt. Pamintuan, then The Soleus Cross Country Challenge is for you. This race begins at at the Iconic Ten Commandments Tablet above Mt. Sinai, in Pintong Bukawe, San Mateo, Rizal and quickly descends down the trails and dirt roads leading to parts of the Marikina River. Running on the edges of the river, the route quickly gets brutal, forcing runners to climb more than 3,000 feet to the summit of Elmer’s Peak, Mt. Pamanatan and descending to another brutal 500 steps down to the river of Inigan.

That isn’t the entire race though, that’s just the halfway point, particularly for the 21k runners. With lots of single track trails, precarious bamboo bridges, rugged and insanely picturesque terrain along the river, The Soleus Cross Country Challenge will push you and reward you. This race should not be missed.

Here are some details of the upcoming race:

Image may contain: text


Ready to take another challenge with FUN on the trail run? The 3rd installment of the sought after Soleus Cross Country Challenge trail run is happening on July 01, 2018!

With brand new challenges, surprise obstacles and fun run river crossing! Hint: Bring out your best costume! Yes, you’ve read it right. A fun-filled costume trail run is waiting for you.


Early Bird Promo (April 20- May 15):
8K – P900
12K – P1000
21K – P1,200

Regular (May 16-June 15):
8K – P1,000
12K – P1,100
21K – P1,350

– Race Bib and timing chip (except 8K)
– Event shirt
– Finisher medal
– Finisher snacks

Registration thru Bank Deposit:
Banco De Oro (BDO)
Account Name: Roel Ano
Account Number : 007040062221

If payment has been made, please send the scanned copy of the deposit slip with your complete name, age, gender, contact number and shirt size to

In-Store Registration:

L-TimeStudio SM Mall of Asia, Ground Floor
L-TimeStudio SM Megamall, 3rd Floor
L-TimeStudio Market!Market!, 2nd Floor
L-TimeStudio Trinoma, 2nd Floor (Near Foodcourt)

Assembly: 4:00AM
Gun start:
21K – 5:30AM
12K – 6:00AM
8K – 6:30AM

More details to follow….

…And by the way, no disposable CUPS.

Everyone is encouraged to bring their own preferred hydration bottle.

Last weekend, we were able to test run parts of the route giving us a glimpse of how enjoyable yet tough the course is. Here are some of the pictures. Enjoy:


Image may contain: sky, mountain, outdoor, nature and water

Bamboo bridges crossing the river

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, plant, tree, outdoor and nature

500 stairs coming down from Elmer’s Peak

We did the reverse by climbing the stairs up to Elmer’s Peak

Image may contain: tree, plant, outdoor and nature

Old growth forest

Image may contain: plant, sky, tree, grass, outdoor and nature

Vast Banana plantation

Image may contain: one or more people, sky, tree, plant, mountain, grass, outdoor and nature

Over-looking the plantation

Image may contain: mountain, sky, plant, outdoor and nature

Views of the mountain peaks from the top

Image may contain: mountain, sky, tree, plant, grass, outdoor and nature

Pintong Bukawe

Image may contain: mountain, sky, tree, grass, plant, outdoor and nature

Elmer’s Peak

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing, mountain, sky, outdoor and nature

Photo ops above Elmer’s Peak

Image may contain: mountain, tree, plant, sky, outdoor, nature and water

View of Inigan below

Image may contain: mountain, sky, tree, plant, outdoor and nature

Soleus Cross Country Challenge 2: July 9, 2017

With the spiraling cost of race entry fees these days, one has to literally shop around for cheap races with main considerations being… value for money, right scheduling and a well organized race. But for me, other important aspects of a must-have in races are the scenery and camaraderie, all of which are present in trail running races.

Me and a lot of others have found to like the smaller, intimate races more and you pay a lot less in registration fees that you would in running those mega races in the metro. I like the laid back thing and that for me is definitely more fun!

One trail race this coming July 9, 2017 is the 2nd SOLEUS Cross Country Challenge which will have 21k and 12k distances at very reasonable fees. I was able to run the inaugural race last year and based on my experience, i can thoroughly recommend this great trail run. Starting from the Mt. Sinai Ten Commandments wall in Pintong Bukawe, San Mateo, Rizal, the hilly route travels virtually along mountain passes, river crossings, small villages, pristine greenery— usually bathed in glorious sunshine!

If you’re up for spectacular scenery and varied terrain, then this trail race will not disappoint! The race’s impressive start and finish on top of a mountain over-looking the vast Sierras will definitely add to the wow factor!

Here are the details of the race:

No automatic alt text available.


July 9, 2017

Mt. Sinai, Pintong Bukawi, San Mateo, Rizal

Categories and Fees:
12K Early Bird P900.00 – April 27 – May 31, 2017 | Regular P1,100.00 (June 1 to 30 2017)
21K Early Bird P1,100.00 – April 27 – May 31, 2017 | Regular P1,250.00 (June 1 to 30 2017)
* Inclusive of Event Shirt, RFID Tag, Race Bib, Finisher Medal, Snacks

Image may contain: text

No automatic alt text available.

No automatic alt text available.

Registration Venues:
On-Site: L Time Studio Branches at:
SM Mall of Asia – Ground Floor-In Front of IMAX
Trinoma – 2nd Floor- Near Food Court
Market Market – 2nd Floor
SM Megamall – 3rd Floor, Mega A

Via Bank Deposit:

Bank: Banco De Oro*
Account Name: Mirjam Ann G. Del Rosario
Account Number 0039-8019-6644

*Kindly fill up downloaded registration form, write the name and distance on the deposit slip then email scanned copies to An email confirmation will be sent once validated and received.

Assembly Time:   5:00am

Gun Start Time:  21k  —  6:00am  /  12k  —  6:20am

No automatic alt text available.

No automatic alt text available.

SCENES from the inaugural race last year:

Image may contain: one or more people, crowd and outdoor

Start and finish

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, people standing, tree, plant, outdoor and nature

Image may contain: 1 person, tree, child, outdoor and nature

DBB Rockstar*

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing, outdoor, water and nature

One of the highlights of the run

Image may contain: 5 people, people smiling, people standing and outdoor

Image may contain: 5 people, people smiling, people standing, tree and outdoor

With trail running friends

Looking At The Route: Soleus Cross Country Challenge 2016

I’ve ran this route several times, both in training and during races and the course is truly unique with all the trimmings of a great trail run. From the casual runner/walker to the serious trail runner, this route of the Soleus Cross Country Trail Run Challenge, to be held on July 10, 2016 at Pintong Bukawe, San Mateo, Rizal has something for everyone: river crossings, single-track trails and fire roads, woods, unrelenting uphills and downhills, farm fields, and magnificent views of the Sierra Madre mountains!

Just recently, Judith Staples of L-Timestudio and Coach Roel Amabao-Ano, the event’s Race Director led a test run of the route comprising of members of Team Soleus and some friends in the trail running community. I absolutely love the views along the trails with the backdrop of the Ten Commandments tablets at Mt. Sinai serving as the starting point of the run.

The single track trails and the main fire road descends into the Casile River for roughly 5 kms., crossing this river a few times before turning around and heading back uphill which will be long and arduous climb. Nevertheless, it will all be worth the pain and effort if you love being challenged with all those magnificent views as backdrop. The Soleus Cross Country Challenge will offer 21k and 12k distances.

(See registration details below).

Here’s a sneak preview of the route with Team Soleus:

The 10 Commandments “tablets” which serves at the starting line of the race. With race proponent, Ms. Judith Staples of L-TimeStudio.

With the super-fit Judith Staples

If you haven’t registered yet, take advantage of the registration discount as the early bird registration will only be available until May 25. Regular registration starts on May 26 to June 30 or until supply lasts.

Details are as follows:

Finisher’s Shirt

Finisher’s Shirt Design (L-R): Tin Ferrera, Coach Roel and Sheryl Quimosing

Amor Sanz and Coach Roel