February 21, 2010 together with some fellow BDM participants we returned to Mariveles, Bataan to continue where we left off from our last test run. Most of the group weren’t able to join the previous test run so we started at +Km00.
To BR: Sir could we request that you ease the rule about staying on the left side of the road, particularly between Km 4 to 6?
It is much more dangerous to stay on the left side from Km 4 to Km 6 as these were the steepest part of the route, there are no areas for pedestrians, there’s a deep ditch, and it has a lot of blind curves. It was very dangerous during daylight, what more during night time?
We initially planned to run just the first 7K of the route but due to good weather we extended it further until +Km10. Cramming for mileage?
From +Km10 we headed off to +Km50 to take some pictures, and after a brief stay went on our way towards +Km87, the final 15K of the BDM route. We decided to run this final leg to give us some idea and feel of the route. But before we got there a lot of unexpected twists greeted us.
Unexpectedly a lot of road works greeted us on our way to +Km87. What’s alarming was that typical of Philippine construction sites there’s not much room for pedestrians as half of the road was being constructed and the remaining half for vehicles. This was in +Km68 and +Km82.
To BR: Would the “keep left” rule remain even if there’s no space on the left?
To summarize road works are in +Km68 followed by one before +Km82 all the way to +Km90.
After managing the confusing roads at +Km90 it’s pretty much “easy” on the way to +Km101, in fact if it weren’t for the blazing sun and the shade-less road it would’ve been nice. Finding +Km102 (San Fernando, Pampanga) gave us some interesting challenge and arriving there gave us some idea of what to expect on race day. Hopefully during D-Day itself we arrive in a good condition as we were during this test run.
Brief history from the historical marker: At this railroad station of San Fernando, the Filipino and American prisoners of war who had been marched all the way from Bataan to Pampanga, in one of the ghastliest forced marches in history, were loaded like cattle on boxcars where, because every compartment was packed to the limit, many suffocated or were crushed to death during the trip to Capas.
Why so serious?
After everyone arrived and got settled it’s time for some group picture with the BDM +Km102 marker.
Of course you probably know by now that right after that shot we all “scrammed” towards the nearest restaurant for lunch! It was already about 3PM so you have some idea how famished we were! Ahhh, the ultra-life!