Mountain News: Mt. Cristobal forest fires now subsiding / Trails, summit campsite not affected

Last weekend it was reported that a “widespread forest fire” has raged in Mt. Cristobal, spawned by intense heat and dry conditions (see INQUIRER article). Today I talked with Ma’am Sally Pangan, DENR Park Superintendent for the Mt. Banahaw-San Cristobal Protected Area, to get updates regarding this incident.

The bad news is that a plantation of narra and other forest trees were damaged by the fire. The area was within the territorial jurisdiction of San Pablo City, particularly of Brgy. San Cristobal. Mountaineers familiar with the Cristobal terrain would know this particular side of Cristobal to covered with cogon grass, making it prone to fires. However, the good news is that the rainforest itself of Mt. Cristobal was not affected by the fire. Moreover, the trail system from Dolores to the summit was intact. According to Ma’am Sally a group of mountaineers have already reached the summit after the fire and reported no damage.

Moreover, the fires seem to be have largely subsided right now. Thankfully, no large-scale damage is being reported although a fuller assessment of the situation will come later. The cause of the fires is still being investigated. We are closely monitoring the situation with the DENR and will give updates as soon as we have them. Since the trail system was not affected, we are not issuing any climbing advisory for Mt. Cristobal at the moment. I am requesting those who will climb Cristobal this weekend and in the near future to give feedback also regarding the situation, particularly for the traverse trail.

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5 Comments on "Mountain News: Mt. Cristobal forest fires now subsiding / Trails, summit campsite not affected"


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Anonymous
12 years 1 month ago

akyat kami sa sunday..
malaman namin.

Guest
Anonymous
12 years 8 months ago

gudmorning to all, just wanna know if Mt. Cristobal is accessible as of the moment, we've heard that it was on fire last night ( March 25).Thanks

lynx

Guest
Anonymous
12 years 9 months ago

sir gideon!

sana we can gather the contact numbers of PASU's in every mountain's area to be able to report any instance or possibility of brushfires sa mga bundok during climbs….

Guest
Anonymous
12 years 9 months ago

Hi Sir Gid,
we also saw a fire after Mt. Natib climbed last Feb. 28. We were on a stop over along,I think in Guagua, Pampanga on our way back home when we saw a huge fire on a far distant mountain. We do not know what is name of that mountain but all of us in our group have witnessed a two separate fires glowing in the dusk. We were concerned what happened to that mountain. Hope this info may help in protecting and caring our mountains and hoping to hear some updates regarding the situation of that mountain.

more power to all mountaineers!

–drew of PENDONGERS

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Anonymous
12 years 9 months ago

hi sir gideon!

kagagaling lng namin ng Mt. San Cristobal March 4 and 5. Ok naman sir yung trail ng bundok hanggang campsite and yung summit. Pero sana sir advise lng namin na wag muna mag camp sa taas sa may cogonan kasi tuyo mostly yung mga cogonan dahil n rin cguro sa panahon tapos magluto sila dun baka masilab kasi may mga locals kami nakasabay mismong dun nag bonfire sa open area na katabi eh mga cogonan delikado bka ma trap sila dun, mas advisable sa campsite n lng sila kasi mahirap na and para mas safe sila. pero pwede naman sila pmunta para sa sunset and sunrise.Btw sir ok na yung road to montelibano maganda na and malawak na sya pwede na umakyat yung jeep hangang montelibano.

Manny M.R.
EAC-KABAN MS