The Afternoon Ride

I haven't done that much afternoon trail riding in Manila. Usually, this would be a few laps in the Ateneo or some spinning in U.P. So when King asked if I'd like to go and do one lap around the planned Men's Health Race this coming May 6, I said yes.

Afternoon rides remind me of my two-year stint working at the family business in Tanauan. After graduating from college, I worked there and tried to put some structure into things. I'd drive all the way from Batangas City in the morning and then leave at around three o' clock in the afternoon - just in time for a four o' clock ride with my afternoon BMB bike buddies and finish the ride of with a heaping bowl of lomi at MGM.

So the supposed meeting time at the parking area was three o' clock. I passed by Tumana and got there eleven minutes late. I thought they would all be geared up and just waiting for me. Lo and behold, I was the first one there. King and Vic were still waiting for Steve at the Shell station in Commonwealth and it would take them at least thirty minutes.

My RideAll ready with nothing to do, I treated myself to some Hi-Ro cookies and a bottle of Sprite. I also toyed with the camera and tried to take some "feeling artistic" shots of the bike.

Mach arrived after thirty minutes and showed me his neat new ride - a Giant Trance trail bike. It was plush and not that heavy at all. He had a fresh pair of Kenda Short Block Eights installed, which he plans to test out in the course.

King and Victor arrived finally. Steve wasn't with them because his bike was out of commission. So we all geared up and pedaled to the Roxas trail.

The course is about 12 kilometers and includes Mandala's cemented roads, the Roxas trail and the Chapel steps down to Timberland's nursery. It's hard enough for the advanced riders and tolerable for the beginners. There even was this big drop after the Roxas trail that would be a mandatory dismount area because of how treacherous it can be with the soil so loose. Victor tried to ride it but his tire slipped near the bottom and crashed. It wasn't serious though.

The Roxas TrailTalking about crashes, I did crash in yesterday's ride. It was going down the final technical part of the Roxas trail. I managed to complete it but my front tire got caught in a rut at the bottom part and I crashed. I'm OK. I think I got some really small scratches on my left arm and knee. It was surprisingly fun.

We got back to the parking area just as the sun finally went down. The ride was great and the boys treated themselves to some softdinks. This is one ride I want to do again.

Check out the pictures here