Almost Licao-Licao

It's November 1 and I finished my cemetery duties yesterday. So today is a day for riding again.

The plan kept changing until the last minute. First it was Maarat, but none of us wanted to brave the traffic caused by the cemetery along the highway. Next we thought of riding at the Camp Aguinaldo trail, but we weren't sure if it was open. And so finally we decided that we'd go to Licao-Licao, but there's a slight twist. Instead of taking the Litex road and risk passing by a cemetery and get stuck, we would park our cars somewhere along Quirino Highway near La Mesa Nature Reserve and bike our way to Licao-Licao via the Pangarap Village. Now that's new for me!

Jonats was already at McDonald's when King and I arrived. After having breakfast, we sat off for La Mesa. I think this was already around 8:00 in the morning.

We parked the car at the Shell Station near the old entrance to La Mesa and pedaled to Pangarap. Basically, the whole trail was parallel to the walls of the nature reserve.

This is a ride I enjoyed a lot, except for the part where we chose the wrong way and entered a private road and got chased by about six dogs. It had a bit of everything - fireroads, climbs, downhills and singletracks. I'm thankful I installed the Nevegals last night because I never had any problems losing traction today. Those tires were amazing.

My chain broke on one of the climbs. This hasn't happened to me in a decade. Thankfully I had a lifesaver with me in the form of the Missing Link. After removing the broken chain link, installing this was such a breeze. I bought it at Trail Warriors Cyclery at Loyola Heights when we were doing our bike shop hopping last Holy Week with Domeng and Eric. It was a novelty for me then. Now, after the experience, I think I'm going buy a couple more.

Because we left late, we only biked till Macabud before we had to stop at a sari-sari store for some soda, turn back and ride to the parking area. We were a few meters away from reaching Licao-Licao and her wonderful network of trails, but that's OK. In a weird way, I was actually looking forward to the ride back. It was that fun.

We arrived at the Shell station at a little past 12 noon and had lunch at the nearby Chowking restaurant. Not a bad ride for the last day of the four-day break.

Check out the map of our ride: