7 Reasons to Bike in Tarlac
1. There are trails to conquer, vast lands to discover in Tarlac
Tarlac, being a landlocked province, is bittersweet. It doesn”t have beaches, but it”ll definitely take your breath away with its landscape of vast lands and paved inner roads.
For road bikers, you”ll be amazed how very few cars pass the western roads of the province through the towns of Mayantoc, San Jose, and Capas (specifically this route). These are highway grade roads that are used by only a few farm trucks and private vehicles.
The province was featured in Mountain Bike Philippines magazine last December 2012. The article started with how a trail-deprived mountain biker from Manila set off to discover the untamed lands of Tarlac. It also gave tips on how to enjoy the terrains of the wild country side. Though be warned that for the serious biking adventure seeker, “Your riding skills have to be sharp, and your tire and shock pressures must be absolutely dialed.”
Check the trailer video below by Edrie Ocampo (a professional Enduro biker and Visual Effects Director of EOVFX) to have a sneak peak of what Tarlac trails can offer you.
2. You can choose to join active biking groups according to your needs
If you have a bike and you want to be with people of same interest, Tarlac has an array of groups that you can choose from. Almost every weekend, these groups organize or join activities for fun or for race. They also come together so they can teach and encourage people to properly bike. An example is the recently concluded 2-Day Bike Clinic last March in Tarlac Recreational Park (check here for information and photos of Day 1 and Day 2).
If you”re into road bikes, join Tarlac Cycling Association (TARCA) or Tarlac Cycling Club (TCC). They have members who join serious biking races throughout the country. But do not be intimidated because they also entertain beginners and intermediate bikers who are just into fun and leisure biking.
On the other hand, if you”re an off road biker, Tarlac Off Road Riders Organization (TORRO) is your team. They have multiple members who always get to
be top 10 finishers during nationwide Enduro mountain bike races. They are also the same people mainly responsible for establishing the playground trail around casino online Park” href=”http://www.visittarlac.com/tarlac-recreational-park/” target=”_blank”>Tarlac Recreational Park.
Tarlac also has town specific groups like Paniqui Cycling Club (PCC), Capas Bikers Club (CBP), Gerona Bikers Group (GBG), Mayantoc Cycling Club (MCC) and Bikers Association of Camiling Tarlac (BACAT) which you can join if its closer to home.
3. The province has safe alternative roads
I have been constantly asked if the inner roads of Tarlac are really safe due to rumors of unfriendly encounters from decades past. But when I started roaming around the hills and mountains of western Tarlac since 2010, I have only received constant smiles and greetings from locals.
If you really want to experience biking in rolling hills and vast plains with fresh air and very low traffic, try this 145 km loop in alternative roads of the province which I identified in Google maps. Passing through 10 of 17 Tarlac towns, be ready to be mesmerized by the change of landscapes. You will experience the flat lands in the east, the mountainous west, and the lahar filled south of the province.
4. You can rent bikes
If you don”t have a bike, you can always visit Tarlac Recreational Park to rent them out. They”re not just ordinary bikes, they”re good looking bikes ready to be taken to the roads or trails inside the complex.
5. You can buy international grade bamboo bike in Tarlac
Did you know that the bamboo bike given to President Barack Obama by President Benigno Aquino III was made in Tarlac? The Bambike, as it is
called, is also certified EN 14766:2005 and EN 14781:2005 clause 4.8 EN 14781 for passing durability, crash worthiness, and stiffness which is the toughest standard for road bicycles.
This company is a socio-ecological enterprise founded by Bryan McClelland in partnership with Gawad Kalinga in Victoria, Tarlac. They are also selling Bambowties and offering bike tours for visitors of Intramuros. Visit their Facebook page here to know more about their recent activities.
6. You can train here
If you”re a serious biker and would want to level up your skills, you can have both the trainer and the training grounds here in Tarlac.
One of the local talents to tap is Kim Torres. He”s an instructor in Fitness First and in Gold”s Gym who conducts regular classes in weight training, cycling, and combination of Tai Chi, Yoga, and Pilates. He is also a professional bike racer and is willing to coach aspiring ones specially if you”re in the province. You can get in touch
with him through his Facebook account or this number 0917 514 1388.
7. You can join biking events
Because of the active biking groups and available terrain, Tarlac has already hosted a variety of different biking events. Karera Para sa Klima III 2013 was one of them. It was a well attended mountain bike racing event where NLEX group reigned in the adventure race.
This coming April 26 to 27, Mabuhay Pilipinas Cycling League is hosting Tour De Tarlac, a two day biking event in the province. Expect heart pumping action brought to you by bike racers all over Luzon. There is also a family duathlon
where parent-child, husband-wife, and boyfriend-girlfriend tandems can further strengthen their relationship. On the second day, everyone can join the 25km fun ride and watch the finishers of the 70km road race in Tarlac Recreational Park.
Moreover, expect more awesome road and cross-country race this coming May 27, 2014 in line with the province”s Araw ng Lalawigan. It”s a Union Cycliste Internationale sanctioned event. They are the world governing body for sports cycling and oversees international competitive cycling events.