A friend of mine asked me to accompany him and his family to Mt. Pinatubo this coming Saturday. Since I had gone twice earlier this year (Jan 3, 2009 and Feb 8, 2009), I gave him tips and my contact number to the Pinatubo Spa. He informed me later in the day that after calling the number I gave, the trips to crater lake have been suspended by the Department of Tourism due to some deaths which occurred due to the recent rains caused by Typhoon Kiko.
Here is an excerpt from the Department of Tourism website here:
In the light of the recent tragedy that struck the Mt. Pinatubo trekking program in Brgy. Sta. Juliana, Capas, Tarlac on August 6, 2009 which resulted in the death of three (3) foreign tourists (2 French and 1 Belgian nationals) including four (4) Filipino guides and workers, the Department of Tourism – Region III deeply regrets its decision – effective this date – to indefinitely stop recommending the said trekking activity to foreign and local visitors, and to all DOT-accredited tourism stakeholders and major players until such time that the local government of Capas in Tarlac including private agencies involved in the operation of the program shall have officially secured an environmental and infrastructural clearance from DENR and DPWH including volcanic hazard clearance from Phivolcs and that it has satisfactorily complied with all the precautionary measures needed to ensure the safety and wellbeing of tourists.
The advisory above was dated August 17th, 2009.
Oh well. I hope the DOT and the proper departments can work on the route to open up the site to tourists again.