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All 4 x 4 trucks must be on its way by 7 am. One of my colleagues got stuck in the Tourism Office and was randomly asked to undergo the blood pressure test. Unfortunately, her blood pressure was high that she wasn’t allowed to go trekking yet. We waited for 20 to 30 minutes before she was permitted to go. It was an hour ride to the jump-off point. There was a brief stop at this point to allow tourists to take pictures of this range of triangles that looked like Toblerone white chocolates.
There is a big chance of meeting aetas along the way. Taking pictures with them are free, and they don’t really mind posing for the camera. Also, when you’re at the end of the line and you failed to catch up with the speed of your group, just look for the stone markers (stones on top of one other) and you know you are heading in the right direction. Trust me, it saved me from getting lost.
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BEAUTIFUL DISASTER? That's me and the Pinatubo!
Since it's summer and we've felt that going to the beach is kind of overrated, we gave it a try to other summer adventures like trekking. It's all our first time to went trekking this year so we thought of Mt. Pinatubo as the perfect place to do it, I mean because why not? We all know that it errupted in the year 1991 and I wasn't born yet so I and my husband find it interesting to visit with our good friends (and since my husband is a Chinese, I want him to learn why IT'S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES!)
Because we do not know how to get there, we strive to search for it and came up on reading a blog which contains contact numbers of trekking organizers. We tried to call 2 persons to inquire. The first one is a bit pricey than the second one so we took the offer of the latter person and we fell under the assistance of "Mount Pinatubo Jolly Tour" (FB page available). Their rates are:
2,300/head minimum of 3, 6, 9, 11 pax
1,780/head minimum of 5, 10, 15, 20 pax
No hidden charges.
Package inclusions are:
- 4x4 wheel
- Local guide
- Aeta Botolan Fee
Before the actual adventure day, the Jolly tour asks us to deposit at least 1,000php/head in their BDO account. What we did was a combination of DIY and package tour because it's a tropa trip and some of our friends came from the province.
HOW TO GET TO MT. PINATUBO?
1️⃣ Take a bus going to Capas Tarlac. Because we live in Pasay City, we needed to take a bus going up north. We took an ordinary 5 star bus at 2 o'clock in the morning because it was the only available bus at that time. We arrived at 5:30AM in McDonald's Capas and we also took the chance to have breakfast there while waiting for the tricycles that the travel tour has assigned to fetch us.
2️⃣ The tricycle arrived at 6AM and it took us 45 minutes to get to Sta. Juliana. The tricycle drivers charged us 300php only per tricycle (). Other tricycle drivers who are not affiliated to any travel tours are charging the tourists 500-800php sometimes (). We met our contact person, Jo Mallari of Mt. Pinatubo Jolly Tour, upon arriving at Sta. Juliana. You can reach her through 09156354895/09283410402. We did registration and orientation quickly and she also let us sign the waivers. What a waiver?!?? Yes. At first I was like "Seriously?!". And then we've found out after our adventure that it's really risky to trek there because landslides can happen anytime since majority of the place were lava formation. It's also very risky if it rain while you're trekking because the water from the streams can get high easily. Also, according to our local tour guides, there were 5 Germans who died before while trekking because it rained that's why since then they are not allowing people to go on their own if they don't have a tour guide with them.
The cut off for registration is 8AM already because there will be a strict clearing operation within the area so don't be late!
3️⃣ After the registration we took the 4x4 ride until we get to the starting point of trekking. One 4x4 is good for 5pax. The ride was fun! It took us 1 & 1/2 hours of 4x4 ride to trailhead. It's super dusty and hot so better bring with you your mask, jacket with hoodie, sun block, scarf and tissues/wet wipes. We pass through a dusty-rocky field and beheld beautiful lava formations. We stopped for a while at the Toblerone Hills to have a picture taking and interaction with the natives. They were approachable, kind to tourists, disciplined for not asking anything like money or food, and they love groufies!
4️⃣ When we get to the starting point of the trek, our tour guide told us that it would be a 5km walk back and forth (a total of 10km walk!) It took us 5 hours of trekking back and forth. There were times when I feel like giving up because it's so far! My goodness! But of course not because nobody will gonna carry me. Haha. We pass through the streams, rocks, plains, and stairs to get to the top so make sure to wear your most comfortable trekking shoes. There were like 4 stop overs and in each there were vendors selling souvenirs and drinks which prices vary from 50php-100php. There's also selling buko juice for 60php only. I tried it and it's so refreshing! We also tried the buko ice candy for only 20php each. If you don't wanna spend that much in drinks, carry with you at least 2-3L of water.
5️⃣ Finally we made it to the top! The view was breathtakingly beautiful!!! Can't believe I'm staring at a real one when I thought I was just looking at a post card. It's too good to be true! Any part of the place was instagrammable! We took a rest first underneath the tree and ate our lunch. So the travel tour prepared our food. We had one cup of rice, chicken adobo for our ulam, banana, cupcake and 1 regular bottle of water. After eating we fix ourselves for being so dugyot and get ready for picture taking at the crater!
6️⃣ We endure almost 200 steps in the stairs to get to the volcano crater. It's so easy to get down but you must be careful especially for those who have fear of heights for it's an open cliff. One wrong step and you're dead! The crater was so amazing! It's so beautiful and indescribable! We had groufies and selfies here and there! The tour guide said that the volcano has the possibility to errupt again after 300 years. (I know we're all gone by that time!) We're also informed that we cannot touch the water in the lake coz there were harmful susbtances which can irritate the skin so I never dare! Water sports were being held in the lake before but they prohibit it already since it becomes risky coz of the immeasurable depth of it. I've heard that you can also camp there but only good for a night. Drones are allowed in the crater. Felt happy for winning good Vietnamese friends during our adventure!
7️⃣ Afrer enjoying at the crater, it's time to take the stairs again! It hurts crazily to the biceps! We need to pause a lot and be patient to get to the top! After the trek, we went to Capas Shrine to get our certificates. It was fun and more than an adventure!
8️⃣ I and my husband's exact total expenses (could be an idea for couples out there who are planning to have a Mt. Pinatubo adventure).
4,600 - travel tour packages
610 - fare from Pasay-Capas and vice versa
90 - McDonald's burger breakfast
300 - tricycle from Capas to Sta. Juliana
60 - buko juice
100 - Gatorade
40 - ice candies
100 - 7eleven snacks after the trek
100 - others
6,000 - TOTAL
PS. You can still lessen this expenses especially if you're near Tarlac or even mas matipid than us.
TIPS & REMINDERS
Bring 1-2L of water. Prices of drinks in Mt. Pinatubo starts from 50php to 100php.
Wear your most comfy shoes. Not slippers. Not sandals. But comfortable rubber shoes.
SUNBLOCK! This is a must if you don't want your skin to get tortured.
Jacket with hoodie, scarf, tissues, WET WIPES! (it saves us from being so dugyot), extra clothes, umbrella, cap/hat - for extra sun protection!
MASK!!! Please, please bring one! (You'll thank me later for this.)
NO SIGNAL so no My Day updates!
Comfort Rooms are available! They have 2 CRs and it's FREE!
Bring your MEDICINE! I suggest always carry a loperamide in your pocket. You'll never go wrong with it!
Food. You can carry just right amount of food especially for those who have ulcer and unless you're not gutumin.
Always bring enough cash when in travel.
Of course!!! Never ever forget your camera (phones), GoPro, instax, drone (it's allowed ). You shouldn't miss taking unli pictures of the view, with your friends, and of yourself!
EXERCISE!!! Make sure you are physically fit and healthy before going on adventures like this. Mt. Pinatubo trekking is perfect for beginners and can be done in a day! This was my second hike/trek after 10 years and my biceps were in shock!
9 years old can join this adventure already as long as physically ready! We just get to know a girl who went trekking with her Daddy.
Other activities like volcanic ash massage and mud pack are waiting at Pinatubo Spa Town but we never tried it, but you can!
Endure for being so dugyot! Better get ready to deal with super duper dust, melting and sticky sunblock as time goes by, and unli sweat coz of the abnormal heat caused by lava. That day was the day I have felt I'm at my dirtiest!
PRAY. Do not forget to ask for guidance and safety from up above.
✍️ MY PERSONAL INSIGHTS ✍️
It always feels satisfying when you reached your goal together with the people you endure with.
Mt. Pinatubo taught me that no matter what life throws at you, you still have to find life beautiful. Because it is. Because it's the one that never gets dull.
Going down is easy, going up is hard.
Beautiful view comes after the hardest trek.
If you want something, sweat at it.
Line upon line, precept upon precept.
You cannot run faster than your strength.
There is no view so shattered that time cannot cure. Just like, there is no life so shattered that heaven cannot cure.
By facing challenges, we come out more beautiful.
If you want to shine bright like a diamond, you got to be willing to get cut like a diamond.
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It was always my dream to hike Mt. Pinatubo ⛰
and finally made it on the last month of 2017!
Mt. Pinatubo is a famous volcanoes that is erupted in 1991, it is considered as the second most intense eruption of the 20th century. It is located in the tripoint of the provinces of Zambales, Tarlac and Pampanga.
It is a popular tourist destination no further than 3 hours away from Metro Manila. You can explore it's natural beauty in a day. What I really like here is the 1 hour and a half 4x4 ride to the starting point of the trek. The adventure starts when you ride the 4x4!
How much it costs? Php 1,600.00/head. Yes, I know it's too expensive but trust me it's definitely worth it!
How to go here? Ride a bus bound to tarlac and tell the driver to drop you off at Capas Public Market then ride a tricycle to Sta. Juliana.
The hike maybe tiring but all the exhaustion will be gone the moment you feast your eyes on the crater lake. It is beautiful with clear turquoise waters and surrounding land formations.
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Cataclysmic to Majestic Beauty. A few words to describe Mt. Pinatubo.
I was invited last January by a friend to climb Mt. Pinatubo and did not think twice to agree on it since it was my dream to climb a mountain. I usually prefer going to beach and wateralls. My friend, Mary, made all the bookings of this trip to a travel agency that includes van transfers. Anyways, it was her Birthday during that time and celebrated it around the preimeter of the crater lake.
Our meeting place was at PGH and we left the hospital around 3am. We had our breakfast at Mcdonalds and we arrived at Barangay Santa Juliana Capas, Tarlac by 5:30 and started our adventure by 6am after the registration. We had a 4x4 truck ride going to the starting point of the trek. The road was rough but the bumpy and dusty ride was awesome.
The sun was about to rise when we started our trek. It was mid-January when we went here so the climate wasn't that hot. Walking on our way up feels like we have been teleported to another planet or you are part of The Starwars or Ang Panday movie.
On our first stop, there's a sign board on how many minutes you are going to take it from there to the crater lake (check the photo). It took me 21 minutes to reach the Crater. My exhaustion was taken away upon seeing the view. It's so beautiful, calm and fresh. You just can't imagine the hidden gem it created despite the chaos it created few years ago and the destructive yet beautiful setting before reaching the Majestic Crater.
We spent an hour on the Crater. Took some pictures, ate our pack lunch and celebrated Mary's birthday. By past 12 we went back to the Santa Juliana. It was so hot and dustier. We fall asleep during the 4x4 ride due to exhaustion despite bumpy road.
Things to remember and to bring
- Wear comfy and light clothes.
- Jacket or long sleeves for sun protection.
- Apply sunblock
- 1L of water
- Loperamide ( I always take some everytime I climb because I normally defecate 1-2 x a day)
- Trekking shoes is highly recommended. No slippers. Don't used your old shoes, it might fall off
- Multi scarf to protect your face from dust and sunlight
- Wet wipessssssss
- Extra clothes and slippers after the trek
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Last week, my friends and I went on a Pinatubo Adventure via TriPinas. We paid 2000/head for the whole tour/trip.
It was a fun fun amazing experience. The whole experience is definitely one for the books -- the 4x4 ride, the hike/trek, the view along the trail and of course, when you finally reached the crater lake!! You'll really be amazed. 🏼
Wouldn't share too much information because it's so much nicer and better when you experience it for yourself.
But here are some helpful tips/important reminders before your very own Pinatubo Adventure. 🏼
1. Sunblock. Do not forget to apply sunblock because it's hot. Very. ️
2. Hat/Cap (or umbrella ). For protection.
3. Jacket/Shawl. To cover and protect yourself from the sun. You'll be needing all the protection unless you're okay with a sunog bilad skin!
4. Mask. This is optional but just to be sure, bring a mask or handkerchief which you can use during the 4x4 ride.
5. Wear something light and comfortable. Dry fit shirt. Leggings or shorts. Again, if you want, wear longsleeves!
6. Shoes. You can either wear sandals or rubber shoes. Not slippers, though. Basta anything you're comfortable with. 🏼
7. Extra Clothes/Toiletries/Towel/Slippers. After the hike, you'll feel at your dirtiest. Weird oily dirty ewwii feeling. You can clean and have a shower after for just 50pesos. Bring tissue and wet wipes, too!
8. Water!! At least 2 liters of water. Again, it is insanely hot and most of the time you'll be directly under the sun so it's important that you drink water. Lot's of it. No need to worry about where to pee because along the trail, there are 2 stopovers with cr!! 🏼
9. Though there are food being sold there at the crater (but mahal, Gatorade costs 100 pesos!!!), it's best to bring your own baon. Sandwich/Ulam and Trail food. No need to worry because there's a "clean area" where you can eat without any sand/mud.
10. Walang signal. As in. So no chance of posting everything real time.
11. You can either use your phone to take photos or bring your own camera and/or go pro. The view is really beautiful so you have to capture it!!!
12. Lastly, and most importantly, ENJOY!!! And thou shall not be maarte!! 🏼
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Mother Nature has a way of making the bad things still look absolutely breathtaking! Mount Pinatubo is the cause of a great tragedy in the Philippines before, and yet it's being visited by people to see the beauty it keeps in its crater.
We booked a tour with TRIPinas and I would have to say that the tour was fun and enjoyable. The management of the tour was quite good as well and the coordinator, Mr. Tee, hikes up to the crater as well and takes photos of your group!
This is our rough itinerary:
0300H call time
0330H departure from McDonald's El Pueblo in Ortigas
0600H arrival at the base camp in Tarlac
0630H board 4x4 vehicle
0800H start hike
1030H arrival at the crater lake, picnic lunch
1130H departure from crater lake, hike back to 4x4
1330H board 4x4 vehicle
1430H arrival at base camp
1500H departure from Tarlac back to Manila
1800H arrival in Manila
Expect the 4x4 ride to be bumpy and dusty. So make sure to bring something to cover your face if you're not a fan of the dust.
The hike's quite long because the shorter route in which the 4x4 vehicles can pass through was destroyed by a typhoon before. It takes about 2-3 hours to hike to the crater lake. There are areas in between with giant rocks where you can rest, but there's also a Rest Station 25 minutes away from the crater lake.
Make sure to bring sunblock to avoid getting sunburned, especially on your way back from the crater lake! It can get pretty hot. Bring extra clothes to change into after the hike! It can be coated with dust after the 4x4 ride back to base camp.
The hike itself isn't too hard because there's no steep slopes, but it would be a good idea to undergo a bit of training before you head up. The stairs going down to the crater lake side can be quite steep, and climbing back up is a challenge.
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If you want to witness something majestic, I say come and hike here. True nature lovers can attest to that.
Spent 2k for the trip which I got from a tour organizer hyde bote. The price includes van transfers from manila, 4x4 ride, and all the fees for the trek.
Other than that I spent:
100 for breakfast
15 for bathroom use
100 for tourguide tip
100 for lunch meal (had it after we got back from the crater)
And 50 for shower fee
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My first time on trekking! I admit, I thought it would be an easy one. But I swear it wasn't. Especially for the beginners out there the 4x4 ride which is compose of a total of 4 hrs ride(back & forth) was soooo intense! I do love rocks, and different rock formations that's why I just suddenly fell inlove with the ride and those spontaneous splashing of water with sand. During the ride, the guide stopped over a certain place and they let us take a scenic view of the almost canyon look formation of the lahar(ash from the erruption of mt. Pinatuno) and there were Aetas too with photo op. You can give them snacks if you want too. Upon reaching the drop off point which the start of the trek, the guide told us that its gonna be a 2hrs trek oh gosh! Good thing it wasnt hot that time. After the 2hrs trek, you will see the sign board that will test you if you can take the last trail going to the crater for 20mins. Yeahs we made it! For about 25mins I thought. there we go.
The crater was soooo beautiful at its best and it was also cold. We ate our packed lunch there. Ya we had our lunch bought from ministop and trekked it up. Because all the food and drunks sold in the crater were all fixed at 100php each. Not a good buy for a budgeted traveller like me ❌ an additional, signal bars 📶 there was dead. Don't worry you can still post those Instagram worthy photos when you're back at the campsite toilets 🚻are up there at the crater and at the starting point of the 20 mins trek.
Going down? Around 12noon? 🕛 the sun was extremely,scorching hoooot 2hrs trek again and last 2 hrs for the 4x4 ride the road was wet and muddy unlike what it was in the morning. Dust was all over our shirts and things. Plus! Our hairs was so frizzy because of the ride that's why I rushed myself to the shower room(50php per head) and had my refreshing shower to get rid of the dirt I gathered from the trek. Haha
I highly recommend this trip for those who are adventure seekers like me. to more adventures to come! I conquered Mt. Pinatubo!
Our travel agecy btw was Tipid Lakbay Tours & especial thanks to Kuya Ricky for he isby far the most (for me & my friends) hospitable & accommodating guide there. 🚹
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One of the most historic sites in the Philippines is now also one of the most famous spots for wanderers. Mount Pinatubo caused a tragic eruption one decade and a half ago which ravaged Central Luzon's provinces.
Its crater lake which is mostly its visitors' reason of going here's a beautiful remnant of such tragedy. Before you witness this really breathtakingly wonderful lake, you'll need to ride a 4x4 which is limited to 4 guests per vehicle, it will take you two hours of hell of a bumpy and butt-aching ride which will also stop by several spots in the volcano for a few minutes.
Upon reaching the ending point of the 4x4's, guests are mandated to trek one and a half to two hours from the drop-off point. As you'll compute it will take you three hours only for the ascending part in order to reach the crater lake, and yes, it's really exhausting. There's a famous saying saying that the hardest climb gives you the best view and you'll think of this after trekking for several hours, too if you go here.
There are many travel pages around the internet and we chose Pinay Keypoint Tour Packages because it's the cheapest one among the others and despite the cheapness, they gave us really great service and guidance!
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I've been occasionally hiking for two years already, been to 3 mountains in Batangas and 2 from the north. This mountain was the easiest yet a very unforgettable hike of my life.
As well all know, Mt. Pinatubo is an active volcano along Zambales/Tarlac/Pampanga area. I was hesitant to hike this before because of its history -- blasting pyroclastic flows, lava and ash all over the area which had affected a lot of people.
It was my first to do a DIY hike as I frequently join Travel Tours. We caught a 2:30 am bus in Cubao (175php each) heading to Capas. It was approximately a 2-3hr bus ride. We alighted at Capas Junction and had some breakfast at McDonalds. After that, we changed into our gears and rode a tricycle to Sta. Juliana going to the jump off site. The fare was 100php per head as it was really a long drive. After arriving, we registered and waited for our 4x4 ride (great thing we booked weeks before to avoid the hassle). It was around 5,300 all in all for the 4 of us (my bestfriend and his relatives). We were introduced to our patient and kind guide - Kuya Rolly. We then rode a 4x4 (we were initially offered a covered 4x4 truck but we requested to have an open one for us to see the view and for photo ops)
It was around 45 -60 min ride. Then after that, since the Skyway trail (makes you only hike for 30 mins) is not operational, we walked for 2.5 hrs under the sun (good thing it was early in the morning so it wasn't sunny yet). We saw the rocks perfectly shaped by the lava from the volcano 24 years ago. We were also informed that the land we are stepping on used to be a forest full of trees. It was then destroyed by the eruption. Also, we saw the Aetas who welcomed us with a smile. After trekking, we finally saw the crater everyone is talking about. The water that time was bluish to greenish and we were reminded that swimming is not allowed.
It was very pleasant to have lunch with the view as our backdrop. It seemed like I was looking at a painting! Truly, beauty can come out from a disaster.
After resting and having lunch, we went down and travelled the same route, we trekked again for 2 hrs but this time it was harder because of the scorching heat of the sun. After trekking, we arrived at the spot where our ATV was waiting and drove again to the satellite tourism office. We were so tired that even fell asleep on our way back even though it was very bumpy.
This hike was truly a different one for me. I was used to hiking forests or grasslands but never been to an open area full of lahar. It was easy as minimal ascents were there. Mostly you will be hiking on an even ground full of rocks and streams.
Despite it being easy, it was a great experience as mountains always make me calm and feel at peace. I recommend this to all beginners!
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Despite the crazy weather last Saturday, TRIPinas, our travel agent for out Mt. Pinatubo tour informed us that the trip will push through. OK! Let's get it on!
It was at exactly 3:30AM when our bus moved towards our trip's destination. We used the given travel time to catch-up on some more sleep and get some more energy for the adventure.
At around 6AM, we arrived at Zambales' Sta. Juliana Base Camp which is the starting point of the trip. We took a quick CR break and instantly rode on our assigned 4x4 as we were already excited to start the adventure.
The 4x4 ride took us around 1 hour to reach the start of the trekking point. The ride was crazy, fun, wild and one of the most thrilling ones I've experienced. We passed through sandy, rocky, muddy and watery paths that made it even more exciting and worth all our screams. We literally jumped up and down from our seats, bumping into each other's bodies, and got to taste some of the mountain's dirt because we're laughing so hard and the water actually got into our mouths. Haha! While on the ride, we got to enjoy and savor the view of Mt. Pinatubo's surroundings, so clear and pristine rocks decorated with the really green trees all over.
From the starting point of the trek, we were welcomed by a big river bed with strong water current because it already started drizzling when we're off to the crater. We literally walked inside the river bed, rocky, watery, sandy areas. The straight pathway was easy. What made it hard was the flowing stones entering our sandals while we were passing through the river crossings. It was really painful when these sharp pebbles and stones stay inside our sandals, making it uncomfortable for us to walk properly. So we do really stop once in a while as we need to remove the stones that were making us irritated.
20 minutes before the crater, we stopped at a resting area where we had our early lunch. While we were eating, the guides informed us that we may not push through the crater because the rain was starting to get wilder, they're actually afraid that a flash flood may put us in danger. But then, as we were already there, we didn't want to miss the moment so we stayed and when the rain stopped, oh my, we all rushed and walked our way to the crater!
The trail leading to the crater wasn't that wide, it was extra rocky and muddy all the way but that didn't stop us from moving even faster to reach the crater.
When we saw the crater from afar, oh my, it was so much beautiful. We moved faster towards it and from the closest viewing point, the view was so picture perfect in every angle. The sides were majestic, paired with the color of the water, that actually looked unbelievably perfect. We took our time taking photos to keep a good memory of this really picturesque creation of God.
After a number of minutes, when we were able to rest and catch-up on our breathing, we started trekking back. When we reached the exit point of the crater's walkway, the rain started falling again so we needed to double time in walking.
We passed through the same riverbed, extra challenging with the crazy rain. When we reached the 4x4, we moved as soon as possible while the rain was pouring hard. Good thing we got one of the best drivers in town so we didn't have to worry much.
At around 2:30PM, we were back at the base camp and fixed ourselves to travel back to Manila.
All in all, the experience was fulfilling in many ways. Trekking hard while raining was a new experience for me and in fairness I enjoyed it. You just need to be geared up with items like raincoat, poncho or umbrella to stay healthy. Moreover, I may advise that it's best not to push through with the trip most especially when there's already a storm signal as you may not fully enjoy the experience because you may just be anxious and worried about negative thoughts like flash floods, etc., just like what one of our group members experienced.
It's always good to YOLO too well but safety must always be #1 on the list.
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That thing that you can choose a short 30 minutes hike to the crater is a thing of the past. As of June 2, 2015, DOT Capas advised that the 4x4 long trail or skyway as they call it was badly damaged by strong rains. So it's back to 2-3 hrs trekking after the 1 hr 4x4 ride. Bummer!
It was cloudy when we went. Just some period of some sun but still scorchingly hot. An umbrella is a must . The crater is breathakingly beautiful! That whole thing with the water is so calm and peaceful that it looks like a backdrop poster .
We brought Jollibee lunch and we ate in silence, in awe of the beautiful disaster in front of us.
We enjoyed the 4x4 ride going to but during the return trip, I was almost thrown out of it . A sleepy head with no seatbelts .
300 gas and toll per pax
3000 4x4 group of 5
500 conservation fee per pax
150 aeta village per pax
100 tip driver
100 tip guide
Total : 1690 per pax group of 5
Backpack contents for climb:
-water at least 2L
-small plastic for trash
1. Dri fit shirt
2. Leggings/running shorts
3. Trek sandals/rubber shoes/water proof shoes
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It was a DIY trip with my fellow mountaineers in Mt Pinatubo to see what crater looks like.We all love to hike so we opted out for the longer way to burn some fats too. It wasn't tough as we all thought..didnt even break a sweat.
As I glanced at the view, I was immediately blown away. It was unreal something that you want to see before you run out of breath. As per our tour guide, usually the water would look like a blue flavored Gatorade (dunno the flavor).One of the best places I have been. Thumbs up
Manila to Capas Bus Fare (one way) Php 200.00
Tricycle rental from Capas to Sta. Juliana Php300.00
4×4 Rental for maximum of 5 people Php3,000.00
Local Guide Fee for group of five people Php500.00
Conservation Fee (individual) Php300.00
Shower Room Rental after the trek Php50.00
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Who'd have thought this place once spew lava and ashes to its neighboring provinces and cities?
The long walk to its peak is worth every drop of sweat because the view is just spectacular!
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Mount Pinatubo is a literal example of the saying "from destruction, comes beauty." Although the eruption in 1991 may have caused devastation, Mount Pinatubo has managed to emerge as one of the most scenic places in the country. We started our trek quite early while it was still very sunny out, got to the peak by the time the dark clouds were coming in and trekked back as the rain was pouring down. The whole thing took about 6-7 hours total!
From the base, it took about 3-4 hours then trekking back down took about 2 hours (not including the 45 minute ride in the 4x4). It may have been tiring getting to the peak but trekking back to the base was more challenging because it started to rain quite hard and all the rocks became slippery. It was a great experience overall though and one that I would recommend to both tourists and locals!
1. Wear comfortable trekking shoes. - People may recommend tennis shoes or rubber shoes but the guides will recommend you wear trekking sandals or even just slippers as you will be crossing a very wet and rocky terrain during certain points of the trek.
2. Go with a fun group. - The 2-3 hours of trekking can be tiring so it's best you have people with you that are up for it, no body likes a Debbie Downer!
3. Pick up a long, sturdy stick along the way as this will help ease the weight you put on your legs during the trek. (You don't need to buy one as you will see many along the way)
4. Don't forget to bring food with you. (And maybe some for dogs too - we saw 2 strays who are known to be friendly to tourists and hang around there just waiting to be fed. We were a big group and had enough food to spare so a bunch of us gave our sandwiches to the dogs) Food is available by the crater but it's only things like cup noodles and Gatorade, both of which are severely overpriced.
5. Be careful and alert. The area is not accessible for cars / jeeps / or even helicopters so should you get hurt, you will have to be carried back (3-4 hours) before you can seek medical attention.
It's best not to bring too many things as the trek will take about 2-3 hours and you can easily tire yourself out by carrying such a heavy back pack. My suggestion would be to pack light and only bring the essentials.
What to Bring:
1. Sun block
2. A cap / hat
4. Sandwiches (for lunch at the peak)
5. Energy Bars (in case you get hungry during the hike)
6. Lots of water!!!
7. Towel + Extra Clothes (including underwear!)
Although boating (Php 350/person) and swimming are no longer allowed at the peak, the view is definitely worth the trek that leads up to it!
4x4 Car (5 passengers) - Php 3,000.00 / 5 = Php 600.00
Tourist Guide - Php 500.00 / 5 = Php 100.00
Conservation Fee = Php 500.00 per person
Aeta Passway Fee = Php 150.00 per person
Total = Php 1, 350.00 per person
We booked our tour through Mr. Wendell Mercado, who was very easy to communicate with and answered all the questions we had before the actual trek.
More photos posted on my blog http://girleatsworld.org
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mid june trekking at mt pinatubo was amazeballs!
it was independence day weekend and there were a lot of trekkers. our 4x4 broke down before it reached the trekking area. boo. but the driver was able to fix the 4x4 and we were able to start the trek on time. trekking to the crater took time. 7 kilometers of lahar, rock, mini sapa abundant trail was difficult. route to the crater was shorter before say just 2 km trek. man i hope they fix the trail so that 4x4 can go nearer the crater again.
do note water, softdrinks, and chichirya and noodles are sold at the "park" near the crater but man it was expensive. 100pesos for a coke! gintong tubig at malamig na coke.
you have to go down the stairs to get to the lake like crater. it was difficult to go there specially going back up but the view was worth it. the wind was blowing lightly at the crater which was great after the trek. it's a perfect place to be amazed by nature on how something so destructive could leave a piece of heaven on earth.
we were all dead tired after.
kudos to the great tour guides of Mt Pinatubo. per my interview with kuya they earn 300 per guide gig that they do. ang mura ng bayad nila ha to think they help in carrying some of our bags and was great in helping us cross the many sapa. and they only get to sideline as tourguide say twice every peak month kase andami na nila at naka queue sila.
parking near the tourism area do cost 100pesos.
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I will never forget this first mountain climbing experience. The path to seeing the majestic crater of Mt. Pinatubo starts from an exciting 4x4 ride that I enjoyed the most! It was like ala-indiana jones! The ride was so fun but short. I thought we will be drop off at the starting point of the trek but I was wrong.
The trail was mostly rocky, sandy of lahar, and barren. So don't forget to put on a lot of sunblock lotion to protect your skin from the scorching heat of the sun. After an hour of walking, we were all sweating like crazy and got thirsty. I thought I wouldn't make it and I kept on cursing myself silently for planning this whole trip. What a relief though that there were small streams coz it gave us a quick moment to soak our tired feet to the cold water. It somehow refreshed us.
When finally we saw trees, and some greenery we knew that we're getting nearer because we were at the foot of the mountain. And that's the starting point where the real trekking began! The path was getting steep and some parts were a bit wet. I almost gave up until I finally caught my first glimpse of the crater! All of a sudden, every body pain and exhaustion went away after seeing how breathtaking the view was in front of me. It was all worth it! The first thing that came to my mind then was how could something tragic turn something that beautiful?! I couldn't help but compare it to New Zealand or Scotland that I saw in pictures. This truly deserved its spot in my bucket list. You should definitely include this in your bucket list too!
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Mt. Pinatubo has become a popular attraction through the years, I've been wanting to go, but never really found time to do it. So when #teamclingy decided to do something different and invade Mt. Pinatubo I gladly went along.
We took a van to Tarlac and rode a 4x4 going to the base, we actually rode a pickup, it was fun for the first 15 mins, but once your butt start to hurt and you taste lahar in your mouth, you realize it's not all that fun. Big mistake! I did not bring a scarf/towel/handkerchief or anything to cover my mouth from the dust/lahar. Maybe I should turn this into a food review, lahar was crunchy, needed a bit of pepper to taste though I sure had a mouth full by the time we got to our destination.
The view along the way was amazing, vast land masses and rock formations surround you at every turn. The 45min-1hr drive to the base was littered with amazing sights. You can ask your driver to stop so you can take pics or you can do it the yolo way and just take selfies while you are bouncing up and down a pickup. #medyobadboy
From the base it takes around 15-20 mins to get to the crater, a relatively easy trail even for beginners. Once you reach the crater you are greeted by one of the most beautiful view I laid my eyes on. Bluish green hues from the lake and a picturesque landscape instantly made the travel time worth it. It takes another 5-10 mins to go down the actual crater lake shore, but be advised the steps are pretty steep so if you have seniors or anyone with knee pain/injuries it's probably best they stay at the picnic area up top.
The "lakeside" was a perfect spot to chill and have a picnic, but our time was cut short as it began to drizzle. Would've wanted to stay a bit more but we were advised by our guide to leave.
All I can say is that Mt. Pinatubo is as legit as it gets, I had friends from other countries asking about it. It is truly a sight to behold, so if you haven't been able to go I suggest you schedule it as soon as the rainy season is over.
Thanks for the invite and had tons of fun with y'all! Sorry sa late review! Hahaha Julie J JP G April H Chichi T Dastine S Neil R Yina M Carla M Ralph C to our next adventure! ️
P.S. We took the easy route so hike time was somewhere around 20-40 mins total. I know the hard/longer route is somewhere from 1hr-1 n1/2 hr per way. Would love to do that sometime.
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Super stressed trek for a first timer like me!!!!but it was all worth it!
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I actually can't remember when the conversation about hiking to Mt.Pinatubo started. What I remember though, muntik na siya hindi matuloy. With the helpful tips from looloo, google, metrodeal plus Jp's previous experience, everyone was super game to do this as a summer alternative before the rainy season!! Good thing we found a contact who still had available slots to accommodate our group! Its the first time (in a long time) our group was almost complete! Especially this was an out of town trip !! Good job Team Clingy! 🏻🏻
It's my first time to see Mt. Pinatubo up close and personal! I didn't read much on it so the element of surprise was there. I only know I have to see it this year! Plus, I've been putting off hiking ever since I had that fatal accident a year ago. So this is me, trying go back to my normal fit self and probably check-off Mt. Pulag from the list this year (Yup, I really want to see it! ). Good thing our group isn't only game for eat ups! Pati akyat bundok clingy na din!
The trip from Manila to jump-off point was roughly 3-4 hours? On the way, we saw the beautiful sunrise beaming at us via Nlex (It was such a treat seeing it). Then I fell asleep again. Thanks for lending your shoulder Master Julie J!!
The girls won over riding the 4 x4 by bato-bato-pick! Sorry J JP G. I definitely enjoyed the 1.5 - 2 hours 4x4 experience to Pinatubo. Was able to stand up a couple of times and witness the scenic view. Beautiful formations made of lahar. I pictured seeing some scenes from "The Land before time" a couple of times (check the photo uploaded).
With the trek however, you now have a choice to do the easy route (30 mins) or the whole trek (2 hours). We were actually expecting the 2 hours hike but the 4x4 took us up to the last few kilometers before the crater (Yup, we got the easy trek ). We did the follow the leader basis where Kirby G was at front and it looked like he was just walking at the park . But Fast!! Ralph C and Dastine S did the sweep at the back since they wanted to take advantage of taking pictures. Yep seasoned photographers in the group! Lol!
There's also another trek heading down the crater. This entailed huge steps and lunges due to the steep stairs. Took them around 10 ++ mins I think. But from their hike stories, it was really worth it and the air was cooler near the crater. Though I don't think I can climb up within 10 mins with the looks of it. Maybe when I'm as fit as before!! Best idea staying with Yina M and Carla M munching on gummy bears, tofu chips plus finishing off our bananas!
Heading back, it started to rain. I'm actually thankful it rained! The cold breeze was welcoming! We rode the pick-up truck this time. It was super bumpy!! Felt like riding a rollercoaster ride without the harness so we were really flying off our seats almost every time!!! We were all wet, laughing, shouting (ehem April H) catching up with our life stories accompanied with pain in our butts and forearms. Nothing can beat the experience riding the pick up!! But I will pick the 4x4 any day.
Overall, I loved it. But I do love it more cause of the company of Team Clingy. These guys really know how to make the long ride home entertaining!! Hiii Neil R
Thanks for saying yes to an out of town adventure Team Clingy!! On to the next adventure!! What's gonna work??
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