Aerial view of volcanic Lake Pinatubo and mountains, Luzon, Philippines
© Amazing Aerial Agency/Offset by Shutterstoc
Are you older than this lake?
If you were born before summer 1991, the answer is yes. Sorry if you already felt a bit long in the tooth, but it's true: Until 30 years ago, Lake Pinatubo was just a rumble in Mount Pinatubo's magma-filled belly. It was a calamitous eruption on June 15, 1991—one of the 20th century's most powerful—that blew off Pinatubo's original summit and formed a vast crater, which gradually filled with water as greenery reclaimed the summit.
Located about 50 miles from the Philippine capital of Manila, the crater was for many years a niche destination for hardy hikers, requiring days of travel to reach. More recently, a four-wheel-drive road and tended hiking trail were added, reducing the rugged journey to a day trip.