Riding Mt Sedir | Abra's Road for BikersAbra - Ilocos Norte Road
Get your motor running, Head out on the Highway, Looking for Adventure, And whatever comes our way …………..
The new road up Mt Sedir from the steamy lowlands of Danglas to the cool Pine forests of Nueva Era in Ilocos Norte is a bikers dream. Twisting and turning its way around the contours of the Danglas Mountains the road will provide travellers coming from Kalinga and the Eastern Provinces of North Luzon with a short cut to Laoag and Pagupud, knocking a few hours off of the journey.
As well as being a challenge for both cyclists and motorbikers, what makes this road exciting are the many things to see along the way.
Sevilleja’s Dragon Fruit Farm
Leaving Danglas, the road starts to climb almost immediately to Barangay Abaquid, where you will pass Sevilleja’s Dragon Fruit Farm. During the Dragon fruit season which starts in May, you can call in, pick your own fruit, wander around the farm and even take a short trek to the Abot Spring, which provides water for the farm and is the water source to irrigate the rice fields of Barangays Abaquid and Cabaruan.
Sevilleja’s farm also makes its own Dragon Fruit wine on site which you can buy for yourself or a pasalubong to take home.
A few kilometres further and you will arrive in Brgy Nagaparan. This is your last opportunity to stock up with refreshments or trail food at one of the Sari-sari stores along the highway, if you are planning on hiking, caving, camping around Mt. Sedir or heading to Ilocos Norte. There are no other sari-sari stores until you reach Nueva Era.
Need a new shopping basket?
There is one household in Nagaparan that weaves Rattan, a forest vine, into sturdy shopping baskets. Support local artisans by buying one (or more) which will help you ditch plastic bags and also help the environment.
To buy one of the Rattan baskets ask for the house of Mr. Alfredo Cuestra.
Leaving Poblacion behind, continue just over a kilometre until you come to Sagao Viewpoint. Here there are some fantastic views over the Bandi and Saquet Rivers between which is sandwiched Mt Rukab.
Sagao Viewpoint is also the jumpoff point for the hike to the summit of Mt Rukab (404masl)
Look out for kilometre post 434. Near here there is a trail on the rightside of the road which leads up to the Tabong Cave. The cave is around 30 to 45 minutes hike from the highway and the trail which is well defined passes through a small bamboo forest and over some sharp karst limestone.
As we climb higher, the views get better, Next up is the Dadamuen Viewpoint. Just before Dadamuen Viewpoint is a series of bends in the road which are some of the best along the whole route. Bikers will enjoy the thrill of leaning first to the left and then over to the right as the road twists and turns its way up and downhill. This is the best place to camp out. The views over the mountain ranges and the Abra River far below and the cool air of the pine forest combine to make this one of the best spots on Mt Sedir to relax. There’s a small hillock just down from the main area where you can hang a hammock and listen to the wind whilst stargazing. There is no light pollution here. Mt Sedir is home to the Philippine Serpent Eagle which nests in the surrounding virgin forest. There are trash bins provided so please use them. “Leave No Trace”
The Century Old Tree – Giant Dao
An unexpected positive outcome of the Abra-Ilocos Norte road building project was the discovery of a Century Old Tree close to the excavations of the new road.
The tree, believed to be a Giant Dao, is around 30 metres tall and has a base diameter of around 14 metres.
Once again, just to remind you, when in nature “Leave No Trace”
From Kilometre Post 446+700 there is also a trail leading to the summit of Mt Sedir (1050masl) for those who would like to reach the highest point in Danglas.
Abra – Ilocos Norte Border
A couple of kilometres further on from the Century Old Tree is the border of the two Provinces of Abra and Ilocos Norte. At the time of writing (February 2018) there is still about half a kilometre of road unpaved just before the border.
Bikers and cyclists – the ascent and descent of Mt Sedir from Danglas is fun and full of thrills when you take the bends and sharp curves. Be extra careful though, as DPWH has not yet cleared and made safe the road from obstacles like heaps of dirt, loose stones and rocks. There are also a couple of places where the concrete just finishes or two lanes suddenly become one. Hopefully soon they will clean it and make the road safe before someone is seriously injured.
Enjoy the excitement of the ride, the attractions and extraordinary views that Mt Sedir has and stay safe whilst riding the route.