Sunday, 23 November 2014

Cycling alone....Its a long and lonely road and there are dangers... Maybe that's why we do it?

Cycling long distances through remote places is obviously not with out its risks. Most risks we can mitigate against. Some we can not. Being ROBBED on a desolate highway is one of those risks. Escape is nearly impossible when you're on a bicycle and your assailants are on motor cycles. Defiance, is in my view far too high a risk to consider. You are really left only to comply and hope you get out of it with out too much expense or injury - or worse.
The people who robbed me appeared to follow me from a small highway town I had just passed though. Their weapon of choice (disconcertingly) was a syringe. Their request of 2 million vnd was fairly aggressively delivered as they stopped their motorbike in front of me to block my path.  I handed over the cash in my pocket - about 800k and they left. I was lucky. I had passport, USD and other valuables on me. With 500km in front of me of very quiet roads and many small, somewhat notorious towns to pass through I made the immediate decision to abandon this leg of my end to end tour of Vietnam.
With the adrenalin pumping immediately after the robbery I pushed hard to the next township which I could see ahead. I was there in 15 minutes and spoke with some people at a tourist stop restaurant who helped me waive down the next bus. The chance arrival of a random, long distance coach with a spare seat and room for my bike was the next small piece of good fortune I encountered that day.
2 hours later I was back in Nha Trang contemplating my next move.  As the ordeal took place on day 1 I quickly restructured my plans to use the next 5 days based in Da Nang, Hoi An and Hue, purchased an overnight sleeper ticket on the 8pm train and boarded after a remedy beer and pizza.

The next 5 days worked out perfectly. Day rides out of Hoi An and Hue, A support vehicle and the company of a fellow rider all allowed me to relax and enjoy immensely a somewhat different adventure than originally planned.

Map shows exact point where I was robbed by 2 (male) individuals on a motorcycle. Time of robbery was around 3pm, November 8th. I had received some warnings about this coast from Nha Trang all the way to Quang Ngai. If cycling alone or with out vehicle support please take extra care.


On the third day of my revised schedule I took on the famous Hai Van Pass. Nowhere near as tough as the ride up to DaLat - This climb is around 11km long to the summit. The views are fantastic and descent was a real blast!

Saturday, 18 October 2014

The Amazing Mount Mayon, Bicol

Another must do activity around Mt Mayon is Quad biking. The Kids absolutely loved this! They all got a huge buzz out of being in charge of their own powered go anywhere bikes! Awesome.





Friday, 17 October 2014

1 More Asian Champs

An unlikely goal realized for me to compete in 1 more Asian champs. The Philippine Eagles played well - not making the dizzying heights of the final as they did in 2013 - but getting to a semi where we were defeated by the HongKong Dragons. Singapore Wombats eventual champions of 2014.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Meeting the greats

The Final PAFL match of the year was played on Friday 26th Sep (GF eve) and in attendance - and in fact coaching my Dingoes team was the 1987 Norm Smith Medalist Davis Rhys Jones.
Dingoes won a tight match 11.7 to 9.8 - I managed 3 goals :)  ..cool.   It was a great season once again with around 12 games played .


Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Wake Boarding @ CWC - Camsur Water Complex - Bicol

One of the best holidays in my 3 years in Manila was a trip down to Bicol which included a visit to CWC wake boarding park. Its a huge facility and parts of it are a little run down (the accommodation) but the cables and lakes are good and we ripped it up for 2 days!  Such a joy for me to get all the kids up on the knee boards or wake boards! Even Levi went solo.


    
Taught myself the 'standing jump start'


Yes there were some FAILS of course!
Tom persisted with the Wake board.......(See the video below to see if he made it up!)
This was a great moment for Tom..and me.. (But see the video below to see if he made it all the way!)
..then Levi went solo on the Knee board!..


Some more EPIC FAILs.!



Sunday, 17 August 2014

Cycling Vietnam - tour of DaLat and Nha Trang

Descending.  After the births of my 3 kids this is possibly the best 3 minutes of my life! Actually I descended for 2 hours, this is a particularly exciting section. Not the best road surface but little traffic and enough good road to hit big speeds;

Monday, 11 August 2014

Mountain bike River crossing in Yangshuo

This was an awesome day out - Getting completely drenched and covered in mud around Yangsuo and the Li river




Thursday, 7 August 2014

China P3 - Rock climbing in Yangshuo

...have to admit I felt a little anxious here being so high up a (real) rock face for once, instead of the climbing wall at our local shopping mall - and here you are really relying on just one bolt...Then the same anxiety 10 times over watching the kids climb... but really great fun and a very beautiful location.


Saturday, 2 August 2014

CHINA ~ Part 2

During a 3 week trip through China I was able to get into a number of things which classify as sport including Road Cycling and Mountain Biking, Rock Climbing and Trekking along the great wall. But for me it was the the early morning running I enjoyed the most. And one of the most beautiful early morning running routes anyone could take is a lap of central Beijing.! Really!
From the Ascot apartments I went West along Wangfujing / E Chang an Road (Subway line 1), Thru Tienanmen Square followed by a lap around the forbidden city then home. The side streets in the area are beautiful, shaded cobble stone lanes called Hutongs with loads of cool looking old style houses and small shops . The surrounds of the forbidden city are spectacular. There is a walled palaces with motes and gardens to follow all the way around. The locals are out on the streets from very early practicing tha-chi, dance or other types of movement and meditation. Its so authentic and surreal and...Chinese! Then almost as spectacular is a lap around the walled city of Xian. Take the paths at ground level of run (or ride) atop the wall itself for an awesome view of the city... its a 14km circumference of perfect running track.
Xi'an is a great city to visit - famous for the Terracotta warriors.

...around the walled old city of Xian...



outdoor pingpong


early morning running past the forbidden city palace

outside the forbidden city

Tienanmen Square


CHINA - P1

An amazing country to visit and awesome place to ride!
I did most of my riding around Yangshuo.

The footage tells the story of how much fun this place is...


Skate Places in Manila

Inside San Lorenzo on out way to the UltraPool.
...saw this story on top 10 Skate Locations in Manila which is pretty cool but it failed to include 2 important places;
11 - Dasmarinas and San Lorenzon villages; If you can get access, there is heaps of good surfaced, hilly, safe roads. We also skate over the walk way, across EDSA and into San Lorenzo all the way to Waltermart.
12 - Mountain Dew Skate park; Mundaluyong - Now this place is very cool. Its 100 peso to use and you need to register - Its a good beginners level park.  There is also a site based skate shop selling decks, wheels and trucks!
Crossing EDSA between Dasmarinas and San Lorenzo.

  

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Girls love skaters...

COG - Center of Gravity
Located at Forbestown Road, Bonifacio Global City .., this wake and skate shop is the city’s haven for skaters. Housing the best selection of brands such as ALIEN WORKSHOP, HABITAT SKATEBOARDS, HABITAT SKATE SHOES, NIKE SB, ADIDAS… - 
See more at: http://cogphils.com

"Thanks Levi for your purchase of the Koston Complete set at CoG Fort - Php.5,500"

Post by CoG - Center of Gravity.

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Surfs up - In Manila??

Finding surf in Manila is a tough ask but we heard about this place and gave it a shot. Not too bad actually. Great fun for the kids and the surfing includes instructors who help out. 
... found some waves in Tay Tay.. 



Friday, 27 June 2014

Tour of Beauty 2 - Cycling Vietnam

Nha Trang to Hue
6th November 2014



The next stage on the tour will take in  Nha Trang and Jungle beach, Hoi An and Da Nang, the Hai Van Pass and Hue.
Expected duration is around 9 days including coffee and beach stops. As in Part I, Part II will be completely self sufficient with only a few spares, an iphone a credit card and a pocket full of Dong as insurance of sleeping in a warm bed each night and getting back to Saigon at the end of it all!


Friday, 20 June 2014

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Travel Activities

Sport Pix from travelling in Singapore, snorkeling in Siquijor and Apo island and cliff jumping at the Cambugahay Falls, Philippines.
Strange & fascinating bike Street Art in Singapore

Levi taking a plunge at Siquijor Island

Saturday, 14 June 2014

..big summer of cricket continues with the Manila 6's tournament

Playing for Roos 1 - We didnt manage to win a game, but regardless played for 2 days in the consolation shield competitions. Conditions were very hot which lead the the next picture.  Anyway great fun and I finally got to take a wicket (3 in fact) including that of my good mate Andrew Perrin with a caught n bowled. Hah I have a first ball Bunny Andy!

...suffering heat stroke after day 2..

Saturday, 31 May 2014

The Manila Cup 2014

Finally line up for the Philippine Eagles in the Manila Cup of 2014. I didn't quite play as well as I hoped but got a good run in every game. We lost the final to the Hong Kong Dragons.
Great day and privilege to play for such a great club.

(I cant explain the stupid look on my face)
For tons of pics go to the clubs website - Eagles.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Streets of Manila


Sunday, 27 April 2014

Cricket with the Roos in Manila

Participated in my first cricket season of any sort with the Manila Roo's cricket club in 2014.
The club was founded by the late, great Steve FatCat Arthur and now run by Allan 'Hollywood' Sharman and supporting friends. 


The year highlight was playing in the 2104 ANZAC match against the kiwis along side Geoff Marsh! The Geoff Marsh!

Sunday, 13 April 2014

MTB Racing with TCA boys at Tayabas.

Racing with TCA at Tayabas.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Wake Boarding at Republiq


Sunday, 6 April 2014

Paint balling!


Thursday, 6 February 2014

Biking around Manila

The Fort High Street

Race Day at Nuvali

Met an absolute Legend - Mt Robbie McEwen - Here in Manila November 2013

Riding with the Mad Dogs for Fat Cats Last Ride

Levi at the Heros Bike Trail ,Taugig

Church at Tayabas - Race day

The famous Bush Cafe at Nuvali