October 30, 2008

Puray is one of the most isolated barangay of Rodriquez (formerly Montalban) in the province of Rizal. When "Montalban" is mentioned, one familiar with the town would most certainly associated it with Wawa, the scenic river (in barangay San Rafael) dotted with huge white stones . Wawa is very accessible, there are jeepneys plying the major routes from Quezon City to Wawa while Puray, to most, exist only in the tales of mountain bikers who frequent the place because of its trails and its falls.

Puray is already in the Sierra Madre mountain ranges, several mountains away from the town center. Its hard to believe there is even a flourishing community there - basically a small farming community, no electricity, no running water. But what Puray lacks in modern amnesties it makes up with the pristine beauty of its surroundings. The streams and rivers there are absolutely gorgeous, with crystal clear cool waters.

One of the attactions there is the Puray Falls (known as Tungtong to the locals). Its a short hike, about 2 kilometers, from the barangay center.

Puray Falls in Sitio Mabolo

From the point where the road crosses the river in Mabolo, we had to hike upstream some 500 meters to the falls. A quick dip in the catch basin would be enough to cool you down after the hike. Even on a sunny day, the water in the catch basin is freezing.

another view of Puray Falls

Getting thereThere are two routes going to Puray - both of which will require that your vehicle can handle a bit of punishment (we were on mountain bikes when we went there).

From barangay Mascap there is the river trail where have to cross the river 11 times. Difficult during the rainy season when the river swells and the road disappears. There are jeepneys from Montalban that goes to Puray via this route but the schedule is not consistent. Sometimes there is only 1 trip a day, the return trip is always a challenge.

The other road (still from Mascap) takes you via the mountains. To say that the road is terrible is an understatement, you'll need a 4x4 or a motorcycle to go via this route. There are special tricycles (those with roofless sidecars) that go via this route (Php 60 pesos one way fare from Montalban, limited number of trips a day).

If you missed the jeep or the tricycle for the return trip, you can also do what the locals always do: walk to Mascap, just about 3 hours away.
All rights reserved Photos by Allan Barredo unless stated otherwise. No photos or any part of this post may be downloaded and reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of the owner. But feel free to share the link using any of the sharing buttons below.
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