BIKING: URBAN COMMUTING AROUND THE METRO (MNL,PH)

 

 

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Lunch Stop at Bulacan

 

 

I’ve been riding my bike for more than a year now and ever since I bought this mountain bike Cannondale Trail 7 (re-vamped) almost 60% of my commute life is now via this non-expensive-2-wheels-motor-less ride.

Well, to talk about commuting, I spend every weekdays going to and leaving the office thru my bike and my weekends in some of planned short / long rides around the metro.

Well, based from my biking experience, PH now is in current ‘adjustments’ in accepting the “bike culture.” Why? It is mainly because of the ff:

(1) not every city has that magical bike lane, a lane placed both at the rightmost and leftmost side of the road which is dedicated only for bike riders,

(2) not everyone is aware of the advantages of riding a bike,

(3) some people think that bikes are just like a ‘toy’ for kid,

(4) ‘why would I ride a bike instead of a car?’

(5) Health concerns and / or issues about human productivity,

(6) I do not know anything about bike/s

…… and many more! So, that is mainly the top reasons (I thought back) before buying my mtb-mountain bike. To chop the reasons one by one,

 

 

First, we do nobike lanet need to allocate a big chunk of our government’s budget to paint every city a bike lane. Yes, I am a biker that do not want a bike lane? I am being hypocrite, right??! Well, I think what Filipino drivers, both public and private, need is to be educated about the presence of the bike at the side of the road. As the Tag line of UFB(UNITED FOLDING BIKES) shouts “Share-the-Road.” When I got my Driver’s license, I do not remember anything or any phrase about bikes/bikers. If only 1 or 2 questions about biking is present in the 30-ish items on the written exam, at least a soon to be driver will be aware what to expect if he/she is behind/beside a biker on the road. In addition to, a definite distance between a biker and the car must be maintained inorder for the bike rider to avoid panic attacks especially if the car is approaching from behind. Filipinos are smart so I think including some bike pointers on its written exam / reviewers will have a big impact on the bike society. Some warning signs that reminds the drivers to pay more attention on the road.

 

cannondale sign

At Timberland Heights, San Mateo Rizal

 

 

Second, about the advantages of biking, it helps the rider to be physically active. Leg power thus stronger legs. Serves as cardio exercise, stress reliever, etcetera. Well, if you are enhancing the ‘physical’ part of your life it will be a win-win for you!

 

 

kids bike

Third,bikes are for kids! Yes it is! We all owned or at least try to ride a bike when we were kids, that’s it. Today, at the age of 23, after owning a beginner’s bike, I think biking is only for professionals who’s career is dedicated to biking. Why? Because in order for you to have a decent (fully upgraded) bike, you must stretch your wallet from P100k and up. Yes! I bought mine in just for the sake of “owning” a bike but a lot of upgrades must be done for me to be fully contented with the settings of my bike. Of course the more money you spend on your bike, the easier it is for the biker to ride his bike in different terrains.

 

 

Fourth, ride your bike or your car? Of course most of the people would chose to ride their car since its a CAR! Well, for me it depends on where to go and what to do. If you are going to a party with all of your formal clothes, get in your car! But for daily and short commutes, a bike ride would be fine. Especially around the metro, the traffic is almost everywhere and anytime. My travel time in my bike-to-work logs is averaging to 15minutes bike ride of 4.5kms. But it will take me atleast 30minutes if driving a car and maximum of 1 hour if I do the commute ride. See, biking can shorten my travel time not including the “no fare expense” if I use my Mountain Bike.

 

Fifth, in productivity concerns, that is a hoax. A lot of married-couple-bikers have their “own”children.

 

Sixth, lastly is the knowledge about bike. I chose this as a top deal breaker in buying a bike. Even after I decided that I will definitely buy a bike, still the knowledge of what to buy, expect, usage, safety and many more concerns me. After having my marked money (hahah), I studied all about bikes’ stuff for almost a month. What I have in mind is a mountain bike but what are the things I actually know about it? What will I do if I did not like biking? I did not think much of it because I know it myself that I want to ride a bike. I just joined bike groups and or [pages on facebook. The www.pinoymtbiker.org  really helped me a lot! If you are thinking on grabbing a bike, just scroll some of the beginners’ topic there.

 

What I gained as a biker:

I become exposed to different bikers. It was like entering a network of bikers thus connections to bike events, bike rides, trail ride, bike tips, riding techniques, and many more.

As a driver, I become aware of biker’s presence at the road. Just share the road, SERIOUSLY!

Bikers are all friendly so expect to have a load of new friends every ride!

Bragging rights. Everyone can go to baguio via private vehicle / van / bus, but a bike? Not everyone can do that.

Leg power, my legs are more flexible and stronger now compared before. Yay!

Hassle-free parking!

Ride pictures! Yey!

I use my bike in some of my errands.

No plans for a day? Just ride your bike and see where it can get you.

 

Rider’s Unforgettable Experience:

Along Eastbank Road – Floodway, I experienced this “walang hiyang taxi driver” on my way to office. I just passed a taxi (on my left) – nagmamabagal sya, nag hihintay siguro ng papara na pasahero (supposedly on the right side of the road). At may “potential passenger” sa right side ko at nakikita kong pinapara sya, so nag mabilis ako para malagpasan yung passenger, as I am just passing this “potential passenger” of the taxi, biglang nag mabilis yung taxi at ki-nut yung line ko (its my right of way, ako nasa harap, yung taxi nasa likod ko) just to attend dun sa passenger na katapat ko. I had to fully squeezed my breaks para hindi mag touch yung gulong ko sa taxi. Nag skid ang gulong ko for 5seconds. Sya pa galit! WTF! After maisakay si passenger nag harurot yung taxi, hinabol ko at alam kong may stop light sa dulo, binalibag ko yung (right) side mirror nya and I just pedalled my way papasok sa mga iskinita. Wala syang nagawa dahil sa traffic. Nag rush ang mga dugo ko dahil sa kaba good thing is nag revert back naman yung side mirror nya. LOL! What I did was wrong pero hindi malalaman ng taxi driver kung ano mali nya if I keep my silence. I trully believe that we need to re-educate our licensed drivers.

 

In Marcos Highway, tapat ng Robinson’s Metro East. Same incident happened on our ride with Tour Of The Fireflies – the BIG Ride 2015, isang lane na kami ng bikers (as in half ng road sakop namin) yet this stupid taxi driver insisted on cutting our lane just to attend at a passenger, ginawa nung kasabayan naming nag Bikers, may pumukpok sa trunk nya gamit pang bomba ng gulong, may nag pipina ng sobrang lakas, may nambalibag ng magkabilang side mirror, naghamunan pang bumaba sya ng taxi pero buti lumayo yung taxi away sa bikers dahil makukuyog sya. Yes, what we did was wrong but those idiot taxi drivers would not know what they did wrong. #ShareTheRoad #ReapectTheBikers

Trail Ride to Puray Falls, mmmm

 

Rider’s Note:

Use flashing front and rear lights when riding at night.

Wear your helmet at all times. As the LTO says “Ang helmet sa ulo, Hindi sa siko.”

Check the gears and brakes before and after riding your bike.

Buy a good Quality bike lock chains for your bike parking.

Avoid doors! Car doors, a lot of drivers do not look at the side mirror before opening their door.

To all the bikers, do our part, PLEASE do not maneuver your bike RECKLESSLY. SRSLY!! There are bikers that just turn their handle bar as their please! Look and signal before you turn!!

Do not use earphones when riding. Our sense of hearing serves as a balancer and side mirror to us!

In driving, keep a distance away from a biker, Bikes do not have “signal lights” whether they are slowing.down or not, just be attentive.

Twin Hike : Mts. Gola and Manalmon

The Weather Was
Sunny. Ideal for Hiking.

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How We Travelled
Rented Van from Cubao straight to the jump off. (via NLEX). Care of our friend Faye – IG.

Where We Went
Mountains Gola & Manalmon at San Miguel, Bulacan

Where We Ate
We have our packed lunch and helped ourselves on readily available tables at the Barangay. Note: P50 per table and P5 for CR..

Unforgettable Moment / What I Enjoyed Most
Crossing the Monkey Bridge (W/ harness,Safety First!)

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Be Back
For Cliff Diving, Caving / Spelunking – missed it due to time shortage. 😦

Wearables
For Cliff Diving, Caving / Spelunking – missed it due to time shortage. 😦 Avoid wearing cotton pants (cause of River crossing!). Sandals are advisable. Do not forget to apply sunblock and if the night catches you, do not hesitate to apply a mosquito repellent lotion or just cover your body since the changing / waiting / pack up area is near the river so expect some mosquito bites.

Hiker’s Note

View at Mt.Manalmon’s Peak was like of Rizal Mountains – Sierra Madre Range

River crossing experience like in Wawa Dam of Rizal. I actually asked the guide where is Mt.Ayaas (mountain in Rizal). I forgot that we were in Bulacan #RizalFeels #MissingRizal and the Guide got confused with my question. HAHAH!

I spotted a mountain that looks like Mt.Hapunang Banoi (Rizal) due to its rock formation.

2L of water is sufficient enough for the twin Hike. There is a fork that connects the two Mountain thus going to Mt. Manalmon from Mt. Gola (or vice versa) does not need the Hikers to be back at Barangay and NO water source along the way so be sure to Drink Wisely!

 

 

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And here’s our actual Itinerary I logged during the hike (Yes, Im part time scribe):
8:25am ride out from PUREGOLD CUBAO
P250 Back&forth rented Van
11:00am ETA San Ildefonso,Bulacan
12:05am ETA Sitio Madlum / Sibul
P10 Barangay Registration Fee
1:00pm start trek, ASCENT, Mt.Gola
2:15pm ETA Mt.Gola’s Peak (with View)
3:00pm start trek, DESCENT
3:25pm ETA Carabao Area / near Fork to Manalmon
3:30pm start treak, ASCENT, Mt.Manalmon
3:45pm ETA Mt.Manalmon’s Summit
4:30pm start trek, DESCENT back to jump off
5:10pm ETA at jump off
– Caving, Spelunking, Swim, Monkey Bridge, Pictures, Shower, Pack  up
P80 each (2 guides, 2 mountains for 20pax)
7:00pm ride out from Sitio Madlum
10:10pm ETA at SM North
10:15pm ETA at Cubao – Marcos Hwy.

Actual Expense: 340.00
Safe Budget: 500
Total Expenses: 400-ish due to refreshments bought, CR, Water, etc.

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Egg Post!

Just made this post to scream that I’m craving for eggs!

Well, I super love eggs! I don’t know why, they just satisfy my angry stomach. At breakfast buffets, I just go straight to their eggs’ station. I want to eat all of their eggs if only its allowed? (or normal)

I stopped (or more appropriate “consume less”) facing eggs since November, I think it is the culprit on my diet. So I’m on a less protein now. The last time I ate eggs was a week ago. I packed 8 pieces of hard boiled eggs during our hike at Mt.Pulag on November 28-30, 2015 but they got spoiled during the first day! I have no choice, even though it was against my will, I threw them away. I will not sacrifice my stomach’s state especially on the Mountains.

So now, I’m just a kid craving for eggs. I want to go to a buffet and eat just eggs but all of my friends are busy right now as of the Christmas Season is in the air. Guess I’ll just prepare it at home or grab otw.

Boiled, sunny side up, quail, kwek-kwek, penoy, balut, etcetera.

saitama.png

Saitama’s expression is what I’m feeling right now.

Maintenance x Muddy Shoes

If we take care of our things, it may exceed the price we paid for!
I just wanted to share how I wash my muddy shoes.
I use this merrel shoes mainly for running but also tried it for some mountain hikes. The difficult part in cleaning the shoes is knowing that you bought the – not so washing friendly design of it. In this case, the mesh. I actually use this shoes, only,  if the pavement is dry to avoid the struggle of cleaning. But there are cases that the weather wont be on your side and will go home with a muddy shoes. If that’s the case, let us wash it up!

Things:
I simply use a brush (toothbrush for small scale mesh), warm water and dishwashing liquid. Dishwashing liquid mixed with warm water is a great idea.

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Process:
First you have to brush of the dried mud off your shoes by simply lightly slamming it against each other or against a wall.
Next is to clear the mud on the side of the sole part (lower part) of the shoes by stroking the brush downward (along with running water) so that the mud wont have a chance to enter the mesh at the upper part during the cleaning process.

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Then pour the warm water all over the shoes and then followed by dishwashing liquid and you can start now with brushing the mesh. Take note that you must brush it lightly so that the mesh wont loose. Then proceed to the hard part of the shoes like at the tip and the back and the side of the sole the sole.

Then rinse the shoes through a running water and again slightly brushing it. We just have to air dry the shoes and wait. Exposing to direct sunlight is not advisable. It may affect the appearance and quality of the shoes.

Just follow the up to bottom rule. Clean first the upper part so that it will also wash away the dirt at the bottom and less hassle in cleaning it.
Note:
Warm water – everything expands when the temperature is high. Put warm water so that the mesh will lightly loose the trapped dirt and instantaneously brush it.
Dishwashing liquid – in treating our shoes, it must be handled with care. We can also use liquid soap, shampoo, hand soap, etc just try to avoid detergent due to their strong chemicals which is designed for clothes’ stain. It just so happen that I also use dishwashing liquid in my biking gears so its the one available. I also believe it is the mildest of all since its the one that we use on our dishes so it may have health caution related chemicals.

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