DIY: Trek Pinatubo for a day
The largest volcanic eruption that occurred in living memory was that of Mt. Pinatubo in June 1991. Its effect was felt worldwide; bringing down the global temperature by about 0.5 °C and with ashfall reaching countries like Cambodia, Malaysia & Vietnam.
The eruption blasted the volcano’s summit and it is now replaced with a caldera that’s 2.5kms wide. Of which, a crater lake was formed. Initially, the lake was small, hot and highly acidic, with a minimum pH of 2 and a temperature of about 40 °C. Abundant rainfall cooled and diluted the lake, lowering the temperature to 26 °C and raising the pH to 5.5 by 2003.
For those of the adventurous spirit who would like to go to this historic & beautiful place…
Ride a bus going to Pangasinan, Baguio or Ilocos Provinces (Five Star Bus, Fariñas Transit, Victory Liner) or catch a direct bus to Tarlac and ask to be dropped off at Capas Public Market. Fare is more or less P200.00 and travel time is around 3 hours.
From the market, catch a jeepney or tricycle to bring you to Pinatubo Spa Town in Sta. Juliana where the Tourism Office and the base camp of Capas Pinatubo Four Wheelers Club Association are situated. You need to pay the environmental fee in the Tourism Office and rent a 4×4 here, they can assign one for you or you may contact any 4×4 driver you know in advance.
Alternatively, you may want to rent a van for a day for a less-hassle travel though you will still have to ride that 4×4 once you arrive in Capas. :)
TAKE NOTHING BUT PICTURES, LEAVE NOTHING BUT FOOTPRINTS,
KILL NOTHING BUT TIME
- 3750php for 4wheeldrive capacity is 4 – 5 persons (max)
- 500php tourist guide per 4wheeldrive
- 50php conservation fee per head
- 500php skyway toll fee per 4wheeldrive
- *rates will be slightly different for foreigners
If you’re a group of 5, you will spend a total of 5000php or 1000php/person. There are also optional relaxing packages like boat riding at 350php per head; massage, volcanic ash, mudpack at 500php per category good for one person.
- Shower fee – P20.00 at Baranggay Hall/P100.00 at Mt. Pinatubo Town Spa
- Tent rental – P100.00 (if you’re planning on staying for the night)
03:00am – Departure for Barangay Sta. Juliana, Capaz, Tarlac
06:00am – Arrival at Tourism Office, Capaz, Tarlac for Registration
06:30am – 4×4 skyway ride to jump-off point
07:30am – Trek from jump-off point to crater
08:00am – Arrival at the crater, explore, photo ops
11:30nn – Lunch
01:30pm – Departure from crater to jump off point
02:00pm – Arrival at jump off point, 4 x 4 ride back to Tourism Office
03:00pm – Arrival at Tourism Office
05:00pm – Departure for Manila
- 4x4s: Wendell Mercado (president of the Wheeler’s Club) 0919 608 4313
Things to bring:
- bring your own lunch (there are no restaurants on the crater)
- camera (for souvenirs)
- cap/ hat/ shades
- water/ drinks
- change of clothing (better to change at the Spa since you’ll just get covered by dust on the way back)
Have fun guys! Stay safe!!! :D