Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Exhilarating Experience

I did not go to the office last Friday, 17th March. I left at 3:00am to take the 4:00am bus for a 6.5 hours ride to the north of Manila. I will be joined by my friend from Baguio City and we will be staying with my friend in La Union. She will take us to a waterfall near her place. Serendipity came in as the tourism officer will be bringing some people who won the raffle in their Agri-fair Exhibit. It is one of their promotions for people to visit one of their waterfalls in their town, in fact there are a few more waterfalls there. So we left my friend's car at the Santol Poblacion for the hired vehicle that brought us to the Simminublan Falls. The jeepney was full and a few guys together with my friend took the topload, or on the jeepney rooftop.

As far as this lifetime is going, i can say that this ride and that route to the Simminublan Falls, Santol, La Union is the most exhilarating and scary one! The road is paved to the top of the mountain but rough downwards to the other side where the waterfall is. But the slope, OMG, is definitely only a little less than 90 degrees. It is circuitous and both sides of the road are deep steep ravines, that if we fell there nothing will stop us from reaching the bottom, not even a big boulder. I tell you, it is more than a roller coaster ride. All of us held tightly to the jeepney roof handles! Sometimes, someone gasped, or screeched, involuntary controlled screams that got out from their mouths.

I was able to get a few hurried shots, although they did not show the real dimensionality of the area. They still appeared flat, not that scary as in the real experience. (please move over your mouse for a bigger and clearer picture)

 This is taken while going up to the top of the mountain, afterwhich, it swiftly went down on a rugged unpaved road. I can just think of what it is during the rainy season, maybe more difficult and more scary! The tourism officer said only single motorbikes can traverse this road during the rainy season.

above shows the not so steep part of the road to the top

 The barangay road is only as wide as a jeepney, it is good that nothing comes here but single
motorcycles. Or else the other vehicle will take reverse until the point it started, and that is at the bottom of the mountain. There are portions of the road where both sides are very steep ravines, with nothing to bar you from falling, not even a big tree!

 another view of the other side of the mountain

another expanse at the side of the road

I felt that everybody almost held their breaths most of the time. And maybe a few said some secret self prayer of thanks to God when we at last reach the bottom of the road, a dead end. And from there, a few more steps brought us to big boulders, which kept our destination, the Simminublan Falls.

All of us have picnic baskets, some even have a radio, and of course a large tarpaulin for shade. Most of them swam in the big basin-like catchment of the falls. All the men tried jumping on the water from the rock cliff.

 I did not join them, as my other purpose is to shoot some wildflowers and butterflies. There are also a lot of dragonflies and damselflies, so they also took my fancy.
 
This is the total expanse of the waterfalls, in cascades. They said it is about 30ft in height. The water now is not as big as during the rainy season. It would be lovely then, but i doubt if i can be brave enough to take that single motorbike on slippery steep road during the rainy season.


 the 2nd cascade from the bottom

2nd cascade even enlarged

My friend is the only lady who took the plunge from the cliff. She even wanted to start from the topmost rock, but there are no holds to get there. We were all at the sides, taking her picture. 

the vegetation around the falls

That is a summary of that experience. My more extreme-adventurer friend still wants to visit more of the falls that need more hiking hours. However, i think i need to ask for more details of the road going there before i decide to join her again. 

Below is my friend's video of the road going there and back. 





14 comments:

  1. Hi Andrea! Thanks to you, I am looking at these waterfalls, which I'd never see on my own! They are beautiful, and the road to them is exciting! Your friend is very brave! Have a wonderful day!

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  2. Great series of scenic captures!
    Happy ODW!

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  3. What a beautiful landscape ! What a courageous girl to jump ! I would be too afraid !

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  4. What an adventure, Andrea! Wonderful photos.

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  5. Great picture of the jump!! Looks a fantastic day out!
    Wren x

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  6. For such views of water and waterfall it was worthwhile to go even if the road was dangerous. Regards.

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  7. Amazing place!! I felt the same way on the road to Giola, on Thassos Island in Greece. But it was worth it.

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  8. That is some fantastic scenery!

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  9. What a wonderful looking place.

    I was in India for work - but took a few days off for tourist stuff.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  10. That looks like a fantastic destination, well worth the journey. I can imagine the pleasure of jumping into the water to cool down and remove the dust from the journey. I look forward to seeing your pictures of the wildlife.

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  11. Hi! It looks very nice weekend trip for you. Your photos especially waterfall ones are very beautiful.

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