Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Northern Luzon on my Vulcan

Nearly 1,200 kilometers of solo riding on my Vulcan with the following itinerary:

Sunday          Oct 27     from my home in San Juan City to Casa Carag in Tugegarao City;
                                   over 500 km spanning 11 hours from 6:30 am to 5:30 pm

Monday         Oct 28     kayaking in Cagayan River (stage 2 rapids)

Tuesday        Oct 29     white water rafting in Chico River (stage 3 rapids)

Wednesday    Oct 30    from Casa Carag to Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte

Thursday       Oct 31    from Pagudpud to Vigan, Ilocos Sur

Friday           Nov 1      from Vigan to Poro Point, San Fernando, La Union

Saturday        Nov 2     from Poro Point to Rancho Caridad, Nampicuan

Sunday          Nov 3     from Rancho Caridad to San Juan, Metro Manila

Awesome ride! The above itinerary is more or less called the Northern Luzon Loop, which my Dad did with my sister (Betta) and me over 30 years ago. As far as I can remember, at that time, the roads from Central Luzon to Tugegarao were awful; whereas, it's nearly ideal for motorcycle touring today!

The highlight of the trip was our stay at Casa Carag in Tugegarao, with our host and river master, Anton Carag. Here was our base for nature tripping in the area, including some spelunking (Callao Cave and another one that is not usually open to tourists--you'll have to hook-up with Anton), kayaking at one of the tributaries of Cagayan River (day 1) and white water rafting at one of the tributaries of Chico River, Kalinga Province (day 2). You will be famished after these outdoor activities and Anton's got all the comfort-food to satisfy that hunger! Let the pictures below speak for themselves--a must in your bucket list.

The natural skylight above the chapel in Callao Cave, along the Cagayan River
Spelunking 101
Singapore Lion lost in Callao Cave
Near our kayaking base in Cagayan River
Potential paragliding site
Kayaking 101 on Stage 2 (baby) rapids

Where the bats come out at dusk . . .
. . . and they're out!
Thousands of bats like a swarm of bees from afar
White water rafting 101 on Stage 3 rapids
Notice the oars. We're actually coordinated!
Our white water rafting team in the middle of our journey along Chico River, Kalinga Province
Interested in capsizing?
Yeah Baby Yeah!!!
High Five Baby!
Claveria, before reaching Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
Another potential paragliding site during the summer . . . will be filled with wind turbines in a few years
Lam-Ang, boy hero in Ilocano mythology, slays a crocodile
Probably the last bahay-na-bato in San Nicolas, the next town south of Laoag City, Ilocos Norte
My trusty Vulcan on the right.
The following is a random selection of houses in the old part of Vigan, a UNESCO World Heritage Site:

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