Pine Tree Makes The Rain In Ilocandia

It was an unplanned travel. Me, Manager Arlon Serdenia and Candon City Information Officer Jun Balbin thought it was a perfect time to hike Cervantes, Ilocos Sur… riding our motorcycles. And so, at around 10:30 in the morning, we did go. I with my Skygo 125, Arlon with XRM 110 and Jun with Kawasaki Wind.

I have to full tank my gas coz I may run out of gas, Cervantes is a mountainous municipality, and at barangay Malaya, towered the Bessang Pass where General Tomoyoki Yamashita make his last stand against the USAFIF-NL, thanks to the fog that brought his defeat.

At around 11:00 am, we where at Tagudin, we bought puto (rice cake) so that we have something to eat. We have also our bottled water, but hey, Bessang Pass lives with mineral water.

We first pass the virginal beauty of barangay Man-atong, Suyo Ilocos Sur. Here we saw the stone wall where the national road cliff, down beneath is a river decorated with very big stones. Water falls is everywhere, if i’m not mistaken, there are four or five waterfalls. The grandeurs of them all is the waterfall where the rushing to the road. A hole or canal was made where water runs down to the river.

Oh, do I forget the wild flowering plants where they blooms so beautiful while they cliff to the stone wall of the waterfalls. They are innocent yet so extravagant on their prettiness.

Manager Arlon and I have to stop at a crossroad where a small store lies, we have to buy gasolines for his motorcycle. One road leads to Dinwede West and the main road leads to Bessang Pass and the municipality of Cervantes.

After that, we move on again, elevating the swirling up-high roads going Malaya. The road were trekking was partially cemented. This is actually an on-going P200 million project road rehabilitation. The road is part of project inter-connecting Ilocos Sur to Benguet to Baguio City. Ilocos Sur is the gateway to Cordillera by this road. The project was being rehabilitated by Thai-Italian Firm, if im not mistaken.

While were climbing the roads, I gradually fill the cold weather approaching my skin. And when I look up high, I could see the forming clouds that shading our way going high. Sir Jun was ahead of us, and probably waiting already.

At one mountain, we stop. We were magnetized by the siren beauty of two mountains divided by the flowing of water going down. Yeah, it is a magnificent waterfalls. We take pictures of it, a very nice pictures.

When we ride again, the fog began to spread all over the place. I try to light my headlight but it was busted. And after a few minutes, I could hardly see some mountains coz it was covered by white. I few meters away from Arlon couldn’t make my eyes saw him.

At one curved, we saw Jun waiting for us, he was accompanied by a malefactor… a worker, i think, of the firm. We stop and ate the puto. I wonder, why puto is much deliciously here in the top of the mountain.

We continue our journey, the man from the mountain said it takes only a little more minute. Well, he’s from an upland place, a minute on him is an hour for us. The fog is all over our way, and I couldn’t see Jun and Arlon who is in front of me. I call only hear their motor exhaustion. I was blinded by the thick white fog that covering us. Oh, it was cold.

At one instance, I met a chicken joy vendor from Candon City, yeah, he sell fried chicken upland everyday. I got jealous on him… because everyday, he saw this beautiful place and experiencing the thrill that mostly of lowlanders can not.

At one curved, we have to stop because there was landslide. Oh boy, what a disaster this joyride can bring. At one lane of the road is the high mountains that can cause landslides and at one lane is a deep cliff which if you failed to execute the turn, you may dive to death.

We can not see the road that was traffic by landslide, and so, we have to take a care to pass this landslides, I made extra caution. Becuase it is a motorcycle, we passed. But for those who have 4 wheels, they have to wait the emergency assistance of the firm.

A one sigh brought us to Bessang Pass. But I can not appreciate the historical and environmental impact of the place, it was covered by the thick white fog. And oh boy, im hungry.

There’s a restaurant. Wow, this is a very high place, we are at a top of a mountain where it is much colder than Baguio City. oH, i’m graving for exotic food. Will the restaurant sell for us a once in a lifetime exotic food.

No. There was no exotic food in these restaurant, even these abundantly grown sayote tops and fruits was nowhere in their recipes. Why? We settle ourself with the foods… i don’t know.

Okay, we hanged to Besang Pass Shrine, we take a pictures (please look below this page). We hike the Crown of the Pine Tree– the highest point of Ilocos Sur. And take pictures again.

At shrine, you could hear the fog form into rains when it fall from the leaves of the pine tree who gather the fog. The fog was accumulated in the leaves of pine tree and it would fall if it is bigger enough. If falls like a rain. Now I know, how rain form in the clouds.

It is already 2:30 in the afternoon, it we won’t leave, then we can’t almost see the roads anytime from now. It was so dark, and the fog is getting bigger and thicker. My clothes was soaked almost.

We ride again and have to get downhill. Extra careful must be observe. The uncemented road is slippery and the mountains could have landslides. We can’t see the road so we have to ride slowly. We ride like we were blind, we can not see the people ahead of us. My skin was becoming white because of fog clinging to the tip of my skin hair. Oh yeah, it was like snow.

We came down, the fog was reducing, but it turned out to be a rain. While the fog is getting clearly, the more rain it bring to us. I was drifted already.

We passby again those skylining and swirling mountains. Those stone wall, muddy road.

Everytime we stopped, I collect stone. In all, i have this five stone with different color and characteristics. Theres purely white, black, violet…

We passed the hanging bridge, the waterfalls, the stone walls, and the greenery of the mountains.

It was five when we got back to Candon City. When I looked at speedometer, it added 122 kilometers for that joyride.

Yeah, it was indeed a joyride. Wanna hop with me.

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