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Discover | Bike Tour to Sabang Puerto Galera

Its was a dreary Monday morning when I started my bike tour to Sabang, Puerto Galera.  It was raining hard the past few days that made me unsure to pursue this long bike trip.   As the old Nike ad said, Just Do It, so I did.  5am I woke up and started the trip by having breakfast at Keri Moto in San Pedro.  By 6am, I was off.  

First leg:  San pedro to Calamba

I trodded through Binan, Sta. Rosa, Cabuyao till Calamba straight.  I regularly use this route so it was routine for me.  When I reached SM City Calamba I turned right and this is new territory for me.  Since this was an uphill climb, it was a bit tough for me, a level road biker.  I rested a bit in Jollibee Turbina and carbo loaded with a plate of Spaghetti.  

Second leg:  Calamba to SM Lipa

I proceeded to Sto. Tomas and turned left at the junction and headed straight to Tanauan, where I stopped for cash at Waltermart.  From hereon, it was a rolling uphill climb to Malvar all the way to Lipa City.  Since it was already mid morning, the sun added difficulty to my rolling climb situation.  I can't count the number of stops I made in this leg as I continually was in thirst and I felt overheating.  Water was not quenching my thirst that whenever I see a kiosk selling Buko Juice, I stop.  When I see a fruit stand I stop and eat bananas.  This strategy seemed to be working for a aged man like me as I was able to reach SM City Lipa around 1130am.  Here I parked my biked and cooled myself inside the mall and taking my lunch as well.  I reviewed two restaurants so this took a long time and I started to bike again around 2pm.

Third leg:  SM Lipa to Batangas Port

SM Lipa is a high point in the journey and when it was in this leg that mostly it was a downhill affair.  Roughly around 30kms were mostly downhill so I felt it was my reward from not quitting the second leg.  I stopped at the Batangas City Terminal to take a picture of the sign. This is a milestone for me I guess.

Getting into the terminal, I had to pay a wharfage fee of Php65 at the gate.  They asked me if I was taking my bike on a ferry, and I said yes.  They considered by bicycle as a transportation vehicle so they charged me.  I was surprised by this fact.

Arriving at the port itself created another problem for me and my bike.  The ferry ride to Sabang Port was Php230, and they asked for Php200 for my bike.  Another surprise there.  Then there's a terminal fee of Php30.    The Terminal 2 was clean so it was surprising that they only charged Php30 for it.  Then the ferry ride.

*for future bike trips, I will disassemble my bike next time BEFORE I go to the counter so I won't be charged this Php200 as suggested by the security guards at the terminal.

Fourth leg:  Sabang Port to my hostel (Groovy Blue)

From the port, I was supposed to pay Php65 as per their tourism rules, however I moved so fast that they were not able to pay for this.  I only learned I should have done so, the next day when I saw people disembarking from the ferry and queued for payment (my bad).  I arrived in Sabang around 545pm and it was getting dark, and I was still to look for my hostel.  Sabang is a touristy spot and its a really crowded place.  I couldn't use my bike at the narrow streets of Sabang.  Lots of people walking and cajoling in the streets.  

Another surprise that greeted me in Sabang is that, the place is a hilly lot.  I was tired, hungry, so I ended up pushing my bike in the mostly uphill climbs.  The climbs are steep so I wasn't embarrassed to push my bike.  Besides, no one knew me there so there's no one there would recognize me.  True maybe, but I was an instant hit in the area.  Whenever I eat and walk in the area, they ask me right away, you were the guy in the bike yesterday.  It seemed to them that no one in his right mind would bike in Sabang I guess.

Summary for this trip 

Per my bike app, I pedalled almost 90kms.  I started 6am and reached the hostel by 615pm.  I travelled for 12 hours but there were a lot of stops and rests for me.  I'm not a seasoned biker so biking from my house to this place is an accomplishment for me.  I'm proud also for my bicycle.  Its a stock bike and its not the expensive kind.  It didn't create problems during the trip and I'm happy with how it performed.

Lessons I learned in the trip

Perseverance.  Yes, it's hard.  It's not for the faint of heart.  Its really is a battle with yourself.  If you are already over your 40s, its not really a sprint game for us.  It's in the journey itself.  Reaching your destination becomes your goal, not the time you reach it.  Thanks to my biking friends, they taught me that rewards come to those who persevere.  Yes the ride was hard, taken one long ride, you will give up for sure.  But when the trip is taken in legs or segments,  not pushing yourself to the limit, you definitely get there.  Thanks to them I was able to reach Puerto Galera at my own pace.  Perseverance.

Focus. Biking also clears your mind of unwanted distractions.  Instead of thinking of other things, you will learn to focus on the road, focus on your breathing, focus on your posture, focus on your body.  You will learn to keep track of your body signals, you will learn to tell yourself when to stop, when to eat, when to drink.  Work stress leaves your mind when you think of your goal of reaching your destination.

Preparation.  Art of War suggests, half the battle is won when you prepare for it.  I googled my destination, which road to take, trained whenever I can from home to calamba and back, segmentized the trip in 20km portions so I won't ride over my limit.  Googled also restaurants near the 20km markers so I know where to stop and rest.  I googled also the ferry costs and departure times.  I searched for my hostel and had email conversations with its owner.  I had my bike checked by the store and had them prepare it for the long ride.  I slept early the day before and carbo loaded on rice.  I was glad all these preparation paid off and I was able to reach my destination safely.  Preparation is really key.

*Now I am contemplating either doing a Laguna Loop tour or a Subic ride within the year.  Also at my own pace.