Philippine Porsche Club run to Baler, Aurora from 13-15 December 2016

December 30th, 2016

 

Usually the number of cars taking part in the Club runs out of town is rarely more than  5 or 6, mainly due to work constraints. However, this number was exceeded on this, the first the first trip to Baler, and 8 cars and drivers met at the Nlex start point at 6.a.m. on 13th December.

All models of Porsche were represented from 1973 911T through to late model Panamera.

After an early coffee break the convoy set off at 7 a.m. proceeding to Lakeshore where Andy and his 911T joined the number.

 

The route was on the various expressways up to Tarlac and then on to Baler on national roads. Only minor road works were encountered en-route and progress was swift along mostly good road surfaces.

 Arrival at the group hotel, the Costa Pacifica, was easily in time for an excellent lunch, followed by discussion how to fill the afternoon.

It was decided to visit Quirino Maria where there is the last remaining giant Balete tree, the others reputedly having been felled by illegal logging. This remaining specimin is in the care of local conservationists. 

As dinner was booked in a local restaurant, Yoli's,for the return, it was decided to take a van and leave the Porsche's safely back at the hotel.

Arriving at the site, the 600 year old tree was an amazing sight. the base would have been 10-15 meters in circumference, and some broken upper branches indicated that it had withstood many typhoons.Of course it was an ideal opportunity for a photo shoot, and the guy's showed prowess by climbing up on the hanging roots for the picture!.

After it was time to buy Pasalubong, and the tourist shop did a good trade selling the local produce.

 

An early evening meal was ready upon arrival at Yoli's, with plenty of lobster and prawns, with cold San Mig to wash it down with.

By the time the meal was over the group were in a 'jovial' mood heading back to the hotel for 'Margaritaville'.

Mark kindly had supplied all of the required ingredients, to celibrate his first trip with the group,whilst Luciano provided his excellent Italian white wine for all to sample.

The evening finished out on the pool sundeck beside the Pacific Ocean before heading to bed after a long but satisfying day.

 

Wed. 14th Dec.

An early start with many of the group doing a few laps in the pool before a very good breakfast.

Previously the plan had been to drive to Casiguran for lunch as guests of the Mayor. However due to very heavy rain the road North of Baler was almost  impassable, with 4 wheel drives even having difficulty. So as there was no hope of arriving there in Porsche's  an alternative plan was hatched. It was decided to head North on the coastal highway to a resort and have lunch whilst the Mayor would drive down from Casiguran to meet the group.

In bright sunshine the Porsche's headed off for what was going to be an epic mornings drive along roads that were a test track for the marque!. The open , well maintained roads, the awsome changes in elevation and the spectacular coastal views made the drive one only gets to do vary rarely. Total concentration was was an absolute necessity!.  The wide smiles of the drivers upon arrival at the resort said it all!

There was plenty of time to relax by the white sand beach before a huge lunch of freshly caught Tuna with chicken and noodles to follow. Such was the amount that a little had to be left behind for the staff.

After the lunch, the group awaited  the Mayor and upon arrival he ensured everyone that the next time the Club came to the area, the road would have been repaired, and he would host a lunch in Casiguran.

Tenatively  this will be in March 2017.

When the time came to return to Baler, the weather had changed for the worse with rain and mist on the mountain sections  and the wind strengthening.Caution was the word as sections of road under construction became very slippery and in places the road had flooded. Never the less all returned back to the Costa Pacifica for a well deserved beer before dinner. 

Ramon, who had driven up from Manila,made it in time for the evening get together.

Again the dinner venue was Yoli's where a complete lechon was served together with Marlin steaks and prawns. Luciano introduced everyone to Italy's famous red wines, with an interesting description of the ones brought along.

Back to the hotel for a night cap then sleep for an early start on Thursday.



Thurs 15 Dec.

The day broke very wet and windy, with rain having fallen throughout the night.

After breakfast the group departed at 9 a.m. for Clark, although Luciano had already left for a dancing presentation!!

Progress was cautious as not only were some roads covered with standing water but mud from roadworks was also hazardous. However the weather slowly improved after heading out of the hills

The plan was for Mark to drop off Ramon at Clark Airport and then with Mike head on to Manila to miss the evening EDSA crush, whilst the remaining drivers and passengers had lunch and then took an afternoon tour of the car restoration works in Clark before a late drive back to Manila.


During the run there were only a few minor problems, Noy  had to clean his car's engine slow running valve and Tony had a small engine oil issue. Otherwise the 740kms drive was trouble free.


For sure, all those drivers who participated will not forget the experience and look forward to a similar run next year, when, it is hoped, more members may take the chance to participate 


Drivers:

 

Tony  964                                  Andy 911T

Noy   964-backdate                 Mark 996

Geoff 964                                  Luciano Panamera

Many 997 Turbo                       Mike 993S