Archive for January, 2014

200+ kms. United Folding Bikers Strava Gran Fondo Big Ride –
Laguna Loop Philippines – Jan. 11, 2014

Antipolo to Alabang, Muntinlupa [530am – 8pm]

There it was. A cycling event organized by (UFB) United Folding Bikers.

I was invited by road master Byron Villegas. {on the right}


The event was called UFB’s Strava Gran Fondo 187 kilometers around Laguna Lake which we fondly called “Laguna Loop“.

Here is something about the STRAVA Gran Fondo Event

{Gran Fondo is Italian and translates approximately to “Big Ride.” This will be UFB’s first Big Ride for this year and we coincide this to Strava Cycling’s Gran Fondo Challenge 1.

Meet up will be 5 AM, Jollibee-Shell Marcos Hiway. Ride out will be strictly at 5:30 AM. We do the Laguna Loop route: climb Antipolo, descend to Teresa, ride all the way to Pililia, climb Bugarin, decend to Mabitac and ride to Pagsanjan, turning right going to Los Banos, Calamba, all the way to Alabang, and then going back to their respective homes.

The route map can be found here:

As this is a Gran Fondo, we encourage the participants to be prepared physically and mentally. This will not be an easy ride, as such, this ride is not recommended for beginners. Recommended bikes are those with multiple gear combos; folding bikes with 20 inch or bigger wheel size, road bikes and mountain bikes. Helmets are a must. Please also bring lights and blinkers, and your bike repair kit.}

At first, I was hesitant. It’s too far for me. I know very well that this ride will pass several mountain ranges and it is not easy. I tried to contact several of my biking friends. Only 2 wanted to take the challenge, Rocky and Kirk Road Bike. The fuse was ignited. We prepared for the ride.

{this is me}

{this is my riding buddy Rocky}


{this is kirk – far right and billy in green}

I charged my HD cams, GPS devices and sound system.

I used skinny road tires because this trip is entirely road.

I also prepared 3 liters of water, 2 energy drinks, 10 cassava cake slices, chocolates and peanuts. I also brought along taxi money. Just in case. That should do it. I think…

Our starting point was 5 AM, Jollibee-Shell Marcos Hiway.

Yup! We were on time. A lot of bikers showed up. There were many folding bikes with cute tires.

I thought to myself, this will be a slow ride.

530 AM. We rode. Uphill to Antipolo, downhill to Teresa, flats at Pililia, uphill Bugarin.









I had to stop for a banana break as both of my legs were all cramped up.
After 6 bananas, we rode on to Mabitac, then to Famy, Laguna.
We stopped at a fellow biker with damaged tire.
We tried to do some MacGyver repairs but he ended up just riding the public transport.

At Famy, Laguna, me and my buddy Rocky were all cramped up. I can’t stand anymore.
I told my buddy, this is it. We will have to bail out at 60 kilometers.
But I saw a gnarly look at Rocky’s face, he does not want to bail out.
I said okay. Let me just get a Vick’s Vaporub Menthol Gel to ease the muscle pain.
You know what, it worked.
In no time, we were back on the road again.
We passed by several bikers all cramped up too but are not willing to bail out.
Some are just applying cold water at their cramps.
We reached Santa Cruz, Pagsanjan at 1PM for lunch. A lot of riders bailed out already.
This place is almost halfway through the loop.
We had a quick lunch.
I applied more menthol gel and road on. I was feeling fine. My cramps were all gone.

My buddy Rocky was in survival mode and we had to stop every 15 kilometers.
I told him, we will just finish 187 kilometers to Alabang Finish Line and then ride a taxi home because that’s another 30 kilometers more. Again, with the gnarly look, he said no.
We reached Alabang, then C5 Hiway. We stopped at Petron C5 for a little break then we proceeded at a resto near our homes to celebrate a bit.

I would like to say that I was very wrong about the folding bikes being slow because of the small tires.
Folding bikes can run like mountain bikes and road bikes. It is all in the riders themselves.
I was impressed and in total awe of what the folding bikes can do. It can take you anywhere.

I also met some really hardcore folding bikers who can and will travel hundreds of kilometers in a heartbeat.

Thank you United Folding Bikers. See you again on the next epic ride.

Another crazy, epic ride in the books. Now we have to look for more crazy, epic ride!

For MORE photos, click here at the PHOTO GALLERY

This is PINOY ADVENTURE RIDER reporting. Ride Safe!

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Laguna Loop Conquered!
200+ kms. Strava Gran Fondo Big Ride – Laguna Loop Philippines
Jan. 11, 2014 | Antipolo to Alabang, Muntinlupa [530am – 8pm]

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