I’ve been planning on doing a Pinatubo Trek since February and I was so close to doing that last March but my friends backed out last minute.Good thing, my teammates decided that we’d try the trek instead of a Rizal road trip. We booked our private tour last minute that we got bumped off to an afternoon trek. Initially, I was bummed because it was summer!!
The van picked us up at Ortigas at around 7AM. Surprisingly, the van was new. And since we’re only five in our group, the van was really spacious. The ride from Ortigas to Tarlac was faster that’s why they decided to visit Capas Shrine first. Actually, I didn’t know that we could squeeze in another item to our itinerary. Capas Shrine was built as a memorial for all the Filipino and American soldiers who died after the Bataan Death March. There was an on-going ceremony with both Filipino and American soldiers prepping up for a joint military exercise.
After running around like kids, we headed back to the van so we could finally relax at the guesthouse. When we arrived at the guesthouse, the place was packed. There was this large group of Chinese people also waiting for their trek. We were undecided whether we should eat or not, but then an attendant told us that we might need to wait a little longer so we ended up eating. Good thing was, they do serve cheap meals. We still had breakfast rolls and tuna spread so we just ordered additional Pancit for the group. Something funny happened during our downtime. The Chinese group suddenly left the guesthouse and when we asked our driver what happened, he said that there was a miscommunication between the group and their friend who referred them. Apparently, the group thought that they could all fit in in the ride. A 4×4 can fit 5 people maximum, and there were at least 9 people!!! I feel bad for them knowing they waited for like an hour or so thinking they’d fit all and pay less.
When our ride arrived, I got all excited! Growing up, I love riding at the back of my uncle’s 4×4 and just standing up and feel the air brushing my hair. Our ride to Pinatubo started and it was almost 2 hours of sand and sun. I was enjoying the view! I just wish that there were more green… 😦 During the 2-hour ride, I saw some kids walking and playing. They were such a joy to see, waving happily to every truck they see.
After what felt like a tanning session, we’ve reached the start point. There’s this welcome sign to motivate you. (Go for the 18 minutes!!) The trek was short, but I was sweating so hard! When we were just few steps, my legs were starting to shake. Damn. It was a good exercise, I thought! Hahahahaha! Now, they have this man-made path so it would be easier for the tourist to trek. I love that I can hear clearly the sound of water streaming and the sound of birds chirping. The joy of escaping the city has never been this strong!!
Sadly, I belong to the senior citizen group!
The crater view was amazing!! I think it will be a hundred fold more amazing if we trekked in the morning, or if we witness the sunset (or sunrise!) here, or if there were more greens around. But, it is still beautiful! I’m so overwhelmed with happiness when I saw the crater, even though we did a short trek, it was definitely worth it! I’m now in-love with Mother Nature whether or not there’s a sea involved! With so many tourist coming, I hope they’d influence all to take their trashes back to the base camp to maintain the cleanliness of the area. See the happy faces? We’ll be back, but this time… CAMPING! 😀