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We started the new year 2010 January 1 with a bang. We checked in to a Pranjetto Hills cottage, 51 kilometers from White Plains in Quezon City via Cogeo. In the morning as we were checking out we asked the hotel lady if the new road towards Infanta, Quezon Province was open to vehicular traffic, she said a most definite yes, her friend who is a fish dealer just passed by the new road.
Oh yes, it was time for an adventure. I got my wife to agree, we thought infanta was just 1 hour away. But it turned out to be 3 hours away with the land slide riddled roads, narrow roads which you could fall off cliffs and rough un-cemented un-paved roads. Ondoy did a lot of damage up in these mountains too.
The view was just majestic, awe inspiring, this is one trek no tour operator has come up with yet. We were one of the first civilians to go through the road… because it is unfinished. And it is dangerous. Do not attempt this when it is raining, the roads may get muddy in some parts. Your vehicle must be in tip top shape, a lot of dead cell phone spots, even with Smart the nationwide network. Travel only during daylight, there are no street lights.
It is sparsley populated though, families have sprung up. Maybe women who like construction workers formed families and lived in the mountains and gave birth and raised children. This project has gone on too long. They say from president Marcos times.
There were military soldiers. One even nicely asked us where we were going. He saw a family man with a wife and kids and a nannie. Nope, no rebel soldiers in this van. We took a Toyota Innova.
And after an almost 3 hour trek, we made it. Awesome! We were in infanta after 75 kilometers from Pranjetto Hills. So if you are coming from White Plains, the whole trip to Infanta via the new Marikina – Infanta road is some 126 kilometers. I bet if the roads were paved you can make the trip in 2.5 hours. Maybe before the end of this year the roads will be all paved.
We took pictures! Yeah. Majestic end of the trip you see the river ending up in the Pacific ocean. What a sight. On the way back, we took the normal route via Antipolo town proper as I saw that after lunch the clouds were descending upon the mountains. Don’t want to drive in that cloud cover. Too risky. In my first scouting clouds did come down and my visibility was reduced to just 40 feet.
In Infanta I got some fishy souvenirs. Bought a full styrofoam container of freshly caught fish and put ice in it. Yummy fresh. And cheap too.
What a way to start the year! Happy New Year 2010!