“Where shall we go tomorrow?” While holding a bottle of beer on one hand and on queue for the next song at a nearby bar’s mini stage, the random question was kept hanging.

“Let’s go to Bulusan Volcano Natural Park.”  And so it was decided.  After a few minutes, national news came that Mount Bulusan had a phreatic explosion in the morning of May 1, 2015.  Given the thick rain clouds that covered the summit, the explosion was initially not visible from a distance.

“Is it safe to go there tomorrow?” 

“Probably not, for now let’s continue the session”, I so declare.  The continuous rain probably was giving its answer and there were no signs for the same to cease any moment.  We ended the day without any concrete plans of where to wander after.

The following day, the weather improved but we were curled up in our respective beds oblivious of the plight to discover Sorsogon.  Lunch time came and we decided to get up and prepare to visit Bulusan Volcano Natural Park.  We surmised that the park may not be affected by the 4-kilometer permanent danger zone.  We had no knowledge of its distance actually but we went nevertheless.

From the hotel, we had a 10-minute tricycle ride towards the jeepney terminal bound for Irosin.  If not for the drizzle, we could have walked towards the terminal.  We were in time for the departure.  Travel time is an approximate of 45 minutes to an hour.  We instructed the driver that we be dropped-off at entry point to Bulusan.

The driver dropped us off in what we thought was the nearest entry to Bulusan.  We walked in a short distance to eat at a nearby eatery for our lunch.  After the quick lunch, we were surprised to find out we are still quite a distance from Irosin proper, which should have been our gateway to Bulusan Natural Park.  We were at Bolos Springs.  The jeepney driver must have mistaken Bolos with Bulusan.


It was an unexpected discovery of the usual rural setting where children play and plunge into the river and at the nearby boulders, women do their laundry.  A vast rice field makes up as its backdrop as well.

A tricycle driver passed by and with the aid of a local resident, we were ferried to Irosin proper and be endorsed to another tricycle driver in Irosin crossing who would take us to Bulusan Volcano Natural Park.

3PM - Public transportation is no longer available upon our arrival.  The last trip to Bulusan is 3PM via a jeepney, thus, we were left with no choice but to charter a tricycle.  Travel time from Irosin crossing is approximately 30 minutes passing through a long and winding road yet majority is paved (contrary to the unpaved and difficult trail these tricycle drivers claim to justify their increased rates during negotiation).


The entrance gate to Bulusan Lake has quite an interesting concept.  A paved forest trail then follows leading to the lake itself.  As soon as we arrived, we were greeted by the famed signage which every tourist gets to pose for a souvenir picture.  Behind the signage are colorful canoes parked amidst a serene and placid lake. 

Surrounding the lake is a circumferential eco-trail which our group decided to engage despite the thirty-minute time frame warning given by the tricycle driver to roam around the vicinity.  It takes forty-five minutes to an hour to finish the trail.  In the middle of the trail, I decided to go back to the entrance and just sit down to relax while my friends went further to I don’t know where.


The trail is quite scenic but I definitely won’t force myself to finish the trail through a brisk walk, after all, I was here to relatively relax.

Upon reaching the benches facing the colorful canoes, I sat down and observed activities within the Bulusan Lake.  There were visitors who opted to do kayak in exploring the lake (aqua cycles are further available).  Fresh produce from fishermen were offered to the guests, which our tricycle driver happily shared that she bought a kilo of tilapia, a freshwater fish, for one hundred pesos.  If only we are to camp within the vicinity, we’d definitely purchase kilos as well.


After thirty minutes, my friends went back as well.  They were certain I went back ahead.  They knew me so well…I partly abhor trekking though they inevitably are my mountain climbing buddies.

As the drizzle started, we decided to end the day and go back to our transient abode at the city center.  We passed by the Irosin town proper and rode the jeepney direct to Sorsogon City. 

The Irosin town is laidback.  

We had the chance to climb the steep steps leading to the town's church and view Mount Bulusan from that vantage.  Going back to the city, the vast rice field of the town at the foot of the mountain was a sight to behold.

Despite the explosion of Mount Bulusan on that day, life on its foot continues.

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