Musuan Peak: Volcano in the Campus Backyard
Bukidnon’s landscape is just simply marvelous. Expanse of hills blanketed in agricultural plantations, bordered with pine trees and towering mountain ranges. One can simply think whether we are still in tropical Pilipinas or not. However, between Valencia City and Maramag, a peak rises abruptly over the valley of Pulangi—Musuan Peak.
While this unassuming peak seems to be just an ordinary cone in Bukidnon’s table top landscape, the 646 meter Musuan Peak, or Mount Calayo is actually an active volcano! What’s more, because of its unassuming stance in the valley, a city grew up just four kilometers from it (that’s Valencia City), a telecom tower crowns its top, and a university campus on its foot!
The state geological agency (PHIVOLCS) lists Musuan Peak as one of the top 20 active volcanoes in the country, with the last eruption just in 1860s (and some records say 1890s). A Jesuit missionary even recounted that he can’t do surveillance in the area because “everything around it is burned.”
Bukidnon folklore once said that people should be wary of this mountain. Incidentally, its other name “Calayo” meant “Fire” in Bisaya or Hiligaynon. Hence, “fire mountain.”
Today, Central Mindanao University sits beside Musuan Peak. It is covered with cogon grasslands, and some trees on its top and its northern slope. It sits calmly yet majestically beautiful in the fertile valley of Pulangi River-unassuming.
Next time, I’ll try to climb her. My visit in Bukidnon was too short.
How to get to Musuan Peak:
Musuan Peak is just a few meters away from Sayre Highway, Bukidnon’s main thoroughfare. Buses plying Cagayan de Oro-Davao, Tacurong, or Maramag passes by here. Just disembark at the Musuan Peak Gate of Central Mindanao University, near the Philippine Carabao Center. You won’t miss it since it has a big sign.
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If you are coming from Valencia, take a van, “striker,” or a bus bound for Maramag or Don Carlos.