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Biking in Mayon

Mountain biker riding to Mayon lava wall

Daragang Magayon, please show your face to us!

Mt. Mayon–this may just be the most badass place anyone can bike or run in the Philippines. At over 8000 feet high, Mayon towers over the landscape of Albay province like a fiery Olympus. The fact that it is the most active volcano in the country further adds to the awe that takes over when you behold its almost perfect contours. Yes, this is an awesome lava churning monster that dares bikers to go extreme. If there’s ever going to be a cradle of Kaijus in the Philippines, Mayon would have to be it.

As a kid, I had always dreamed of getting close to Mayon. Last week, I finally did just that. I was part of a group of bloggers invited by Biggs Diner on a tour of Bicolandia. I saw my chance to finally get to bike Mayon and I took it. Read more [+]

Biking in La Mesa

Biker at one of the bridges in the La Mesa Nature Reserve

It’s tricky to descend into and then climb out of these bridges. Photo courtesy of Bong Madriaga

The first time I came to La Mesa several years ago, I couldn’t believe that there was such a place right inside Metro Manila. I had heard a lot about the place, about the beauty of its trails, and the postcard (or is it Instagram?) perfect scenery you get to enjoy while biking there. But nothing compares to seeing it for yourself.

Let’s just get something out of the way first. The biking destination I am talking about is the La Mesa Nature Reserve, not the La Mesa Ecopark. The former has kilometers upon kilometers of well-maintained fire roads and singletrack which can take you a whole day to explore. The latter (the Ecopark) is a smaller park which features boating, paintball, and a few kilometers of biking. It’s more suited for family picnics instead of mountain biking. It’s easy to confuse the two parks because both are maintained by ABS-CBN’s Bantay Kalikasan. Read more [+]

King of the Mountain 2013

All Terra King of the Mountain 2013

Mountain bikers race towards the sun and the hills at the All Terra King of the Mountain 2013

The philosopher Nietzsche had a lot of strange ideas. ‘What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger,’ is one of his more popular quotes. For no reason at all, this thought struck me out of the blue while I was ascending The Wall in Timberland last Saturday in All Terra’s King of the Mountain bike race.

I was with more than a hundred other bikers who were struggling up the steepest part of the dreaded Wall, drawing heavy breaths, gritting their teeth, grinding their cranks, giving everything their legs could possibly give, but I was also wondering: will I get stronger after this or will I simply drop dead? While marinating in gallons of my own sweat, the outcome seemed more like the latter. But I kept two fingers crossed while I held on to my handlebars. Read more [+]

Pinoy Sets Record At US Ultramarathon

Simon Sandoval

Simon Sandoval, the Pinoy ultrarunner who set a new record at the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run

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Simon Sandoval of Makati City, Metro Manila sets a New Course Record for a Local Pinoy Ultra Runner at the 40th Edition of the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Race (WS100), considered as the oldest and most prestigious ultra marathon mountain trail race in the world. He finished the race in 27 hours 9 minutes 53 seconds with a ranking of 156th out of 277 finishers in the second hottest edition in the history of the race where the temperature registered triple digits as high as 110 degrees Fahrenheit in the mountain canyons of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Ranges & Western States Trails. Sandoval was the lone representative of the country out of the 22 countries and 40 states in the US that were represented in the said race in this year’s edition. Read more [+]