Rising 1,875 MASL in the small town of Lucban, Mt. Banahaw de Lucban (BDL) sits within the Mts. Banahaw-San Cristobal Protected Landscape. Visible while at any point in Lucban, the rounded peak of BDL is known for not showing itself and is mostly crowned by clouds. The only allowed entry point for a BDL climb is the Ayuti Campus of Southern Luzon State University (SLSU). From there, climbers walk over wide open trails for about an hour to reach the mountain’s ranger station.
The actual climb commences as soon as the forest line is entered at the ranger station. The trail is straightforward and ascends all the way to the summit. Since the mountain is a protected area, the forest is dense and encourages the lush growth of trees, ferns and shrubs. There are lots of roots and a few felled trees along the trail. As can be expected, the infamous bloodsuckers or the limatiks call BDL their home. They are present in most parts of the trail but mostly become sparse as soon as 1,400 MASL is reached. It takes approximately four hours to reach the peak. The summit is a wide area surrounded with trees. Albeit there is an absence of a view, the neighboring Quezon towns are visible at certain points during the final stretch of the assault.
In order to climb the mountain, like its sister Mt. Banahaw, a permit must be secured from the DENR’s park superintendent. The request is sent to PASU Salud Pangan at email address firstname.lastname@example.org. On top of this, the permission of SLSU is also required. SLSU will assign the forest ranger and guide. One guide is required for every ten people. The ranger conducts an (short) orientation as to the dos and don’ts while inside the park.
Only dayhikes are allowed on Mt. Banahaw de Lucban. In order to preserve the forest, camping at the summit has been prohibited. If staying overnight at the park, there is a ranger station at the base of the mountain where climbers can spend the night. The shelter has a modest room and kitchen. If climbing in small groups of five or less, bringing of tents may be foregone. For large groups, the ranger station has a spacious area in front where tents can be set up.
09:30 Meet guides at the entrance of SLSU Ayuti Campus
10:00 Start trek
10:45 ETA communication tower
11:00 ETA ranger station; prepare daypack and take lunch
11:30 Start dayhike of BDL
13:00 ETA rest area
16:30 Descend and resume trek
19:30 ETA ranger station
07:00 Break camp
09:00 Walk back to the campus
09:45 ETA SLSU Ayuti Campus
10:00 Lucban side trip