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Biking Corregidor

Photo by: Jeff Trono
Eternal Flame of Freedom
The first time I've been to Corregidor was during the 1st Corregidor International Half Marathon (CIHM) that was held a few days before Christmas of 2010. It was the event where just a few hundred meters away from the starting line, I immediately dumped my goal of finishing the course as fast as I could in exchange of experiencing the magnificence of the Island, take photos of the relics of World War II, and feel the warm yet fresh breeze of air along the whole race course of Corregidor.

More than two (2) years after, I was back to this "rock" island together with some of my officemates (and some of their friends), not to run, but to explore the Island with our mountain bikes. This was the first time I braved the stretch of Quezon Ave. to Quiapo, and to CCP where Sun Cruises is docked to ferry us to and from Corregidor.

Upon our arrival, we were introduced to our guide, left our baggage on a store near the camping grounds (where we also dined for the whole duration of our stay), and off we started our tour on this tadpole-shaped island on our two-wheels. Even though I have already seen most of the Island's surprises, I was still in awe as my imagination wanders in every spot, every angle of the island, forming images of how the island looked like, and how the soldiers bravely defended their stations during the war. The presence of our tour guide this time made me learn more about the history that has surrounded the island.

For those gearing up to join this year's 1st Corregidor Marathon and the 4th CIHM, here are some of our photos taken during our bike ride last May 18 and 19, 2013 at this historic island called "the Rock".

Touchdown at the North Dock (L-R: me, Jeff, Kuya Naz, 2 friends of Kuya Naz)

McArthur's Statue near Lorcha Dock

Ruins of the Middleside Barracks, so-called because it is located at the middle-sector of the Island

Tree-lined and quiet road going to the Battery Ways

The four Battery Ways, capable of shooting 12-inch mortars up to 14,610 yards distance in any direction

Going to the Ordnance Repair Shop

Battery Hearn (Smith #2), the west-ranged gun capable of firing maximum 30,000 yards, firing elevation up to 35-degrees, and fire shell of 1,000-lbs. The gun was permanently disabled in January 1945.

Three-storey concrete building, named Mile-long (Top side) Barracks was constructed to be hurricane-proof. The full building length measures about 1,520-feet.

Towards the Topside Parade ground (right) and Pacific War Memorial (left)

Artilleries at the Topside Parade ground

10-feet high Brothers-in-Arms statue of a Filipino and American soldier depicting the close friendship and camaraderie between the Philippines and United States in times of war and peace

The altar dome of Pacific War Memorial. The dome has an open center where sunlight falls on the altar during daylight hours.

View of Manila Bay/South Channel

Ordnance and other war materials are transported here from Lorcha dock to Malinta tunnel through rail transportation

The historic Spanish flagpole seized by the American fleet from a Spanish warship at the Battle of Manila Bay on May 1, 1898. The Philippine flag was first hoisted at this flagpole on October 12, 1947 signifying the American turnover of Corregidor to the Philippine Republic.

Spanish Lighthouse, situated at the highest point of the Island at 628-fasl

View of Bataan from the Lighthouse (one-side view). You can actually have a 360-degrees breathtaking view of Corregidor, Manila Bay, West Philippine Sea, and provinces of Bataan and Cavite from the lighthouse.

Anti-aircraft gun inside the Japanese Garden of Peace

Closer look of the anti-aircraft gun's barrel pierced by actual bullet shots

Some murals at the Filipino Heroes Memorial park

Manuel L. Quezon's Statue, beside it are concrete inscriptions of the President's famous quotes

Sergio Osmeña's Statue, the 2nd President of the Philippine Commonwealth

A ghost of a Japanese soldier on his mountain bike attire coming out from one of the collapsed tunnels. Another interesting tunnels that I want to see is the Navy intercept tunnel (no photo available) located near the tail end of the Island.

View of the remaining 700-m long Kindley Airfield from the Mindanao Garden of Peace. The airfield was operated during the pre-war period which also housed a hydroplane hangar used by the US Navy

Caballo Island (Fort Hughes) can be seen near Mindanao Garden of Peace/Kindley Airfield at the Island's tail end

The cottages at Corregidor Beach resort

"Bloodstones" at the Corregidor beach resort (also found at the Bloodstone beach, near the South Dock) tainted not by blood of the dead soldiers but due to chemical reaction of seawater to the rocks

West or East entrance to the creepy Malinta tunnel. It was inside the vicinity of the tunnel where Quezon and Osmeña were inaugurated for their 2nd term as President and Vice-President of the Philippine Commonwealth. I still have to see the light shows of Malinta tunnel

A relaxing view of the North side beach. There were teenagers here harvesting some Oysters (talaba) and tahong from the ocean rocks

Pristine pool water at Corregidor Inn/Hotel

Our makeshift tent for the night which kept us cool and a feast advantage for the mosquitoes

That's a monkey wandering in the middle of the road. It has been said that there's also a Theme park and Aviary in the island which houses a number of variety of local and domestic birds and a large cage for a number of monkeys.

Our evening campfire served as our only light on the silent, creepy night as we are surrounded by wandering monkeys

*Photos were shot (aside from me) by: Valerio Ignacio and Jefferson Trono.

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