Day tours in and around Angeles City.
Day Trip Number #2
Recently I got a text from Shagger imploring me to accompany him on a bike ride. I am not sure if this was because he felt the need to get me back on the bike after my recent spill or maybe because he hadn’t really taken his bike for a decent ride in a long time. Anyway I said yes and so with Ronalie (no nose) armed with camera we took off on our second day trip.
After leaving home it was up Don Juico Avenue past Roadies heading towards Friendship Highway
Along the way we passed Stargate with it’s ever attentive guard guarding the portal
Past Easy Riders where we revved the bikes especially hard just to let them know we were around
Cross over Friendship Highway (the old Friendship Gate is on your right hand side) and head towards the new Friendship entrance to the base.
Just keep on following the road past the new Friendship Gate and very soon you are on a classic provincial road travelling through the now vegetated lahar fields
Very soon you will come to the new Expressway which heads towards Subic. After reading the signs promoting the development of this road for so many years it is really quite exciting to see it is actually getting somewhere near completion.
After crossing over the new Highway it’s a bit bumpy as the roads are half sealed and half lahar. The lahar is actually quite a pleasant driving surface and does not pose any real problems for adventurous travelers.
Fairly soon you come to Barangay Margot where the rural lifestyle begins to dominate proceedings. This is truly a rural area and only 15 minutes drive from Fields Avenue.
The locals were a little curious about our presence who are these crazy white guys on their noisy bikes
After Barangay Margot you will come to the last entrance to the base. If on a bike make sure you are wearing your helmet if going into the base and for car drivers make sure your seatbelt is on.
After the base entrance there is a small water hazard which the first time we did this trip proved a small problem wetting a spark club. However this time we heeded the advice of Thotoy and came prepared with condom covered spark plugs.
Then the next town of any significance is Sabatoda.
In Sabatoda life moves at a more sedate pace
In fact in many ways this is a very civilized little town
But even in the provincial areas modern industry is the order of the day
After travelling through Sabatoda it’s a slight downhill run to the bridge which marks the true beginning of your provincial expedition.
The view from the bridge.
Life here is very basic and close to the environment.
After the bridge it is a steady climb on a lahar road heading towards the infamous Mount Pinatubo
Passing through some very basic provincial areas
Where existence is somewhat primitive and basic at the best of times
But there are constant reminders that we are not that far from civilization such as the pristine jeepney which we found was utilized by Roadslut on his last staff outing.
As you progress up the hills the vegetation becomes more tropical and jungle like with banana trees Mango trees and lush undergrowth dominating the surrounding area.
After reaching a high point of the hills it was time to make a decision either turn round and head back to civilization or carry on up the mountains heading towards Mount Pinatubo. We decided heading back was the best option and this decision was duly prompted by miss no nose Ronalie complaining of a sore ass.
I had a look at the road as it headed onwards and it looked fine for travelling. I have no hesitation in recommending this trip to any adventurous traveler. The road heads towards Mount Pinatubo and eventually intersects with other back roads which in turn connect to Subic. Due to time constraints we did not take this road but plans are underway for this expedition in the vey near future.
As you travel through the small villages religion is always present and the signs remind you of the predominance of the Catholic Church.
As always there are the local sari sari stores which are considered a “nice business” by the majority of Filipinos
Carry on down the road heading past the new Friendship gate entrance to the base.
Turn the corner and it’s back to civilization
As the journey comes to a close I thoroughly recommend a trip along Friendship and a stop off at The Cold Drop for a drink and some good food.
This is a great Day Trip and will take you about 2 hours driving at a sedate pace and allowing for stoppage time. This is a good trip because you really get to see the provincial life style of the Filipinos yet you are literally in the very near back blocks of Angeles.
Evidence of the devastation from the Mount Pinatubo explosion is everywhere yet life goes on and it is a testimony to the Filipino hardiness to see how they have adapted. This trip will afford you glimpses of a hardy somewhat basic life and increase your understanding of the country we all love so much.