Its unlike most of the waterfalls I have photographed. Instead of single drop, it has a fantastic wide configuration, with silky strands of water flowing over rounded boulders and on to mini-cascades and pools downstream. It looks delicate rather than powerful.
The day I was there was not exactly the perfect day to shoot waterfalls. We were in Burgos, Ilocos Norte a little after 9 in the morning after 10 hours on the road. It was a cloudless day and the sun was shining brightly but my companions and I decided to go ahead with the trek to Kaangrian, I reckon we may never get the chance to visit it again during the rainy season when the falls is fuller.
All of us were very excited we forgot to have lunch first, thanks partly to the over zealous Burgos policemen who escorted us to the jumpoff point after we failed to contact our guide (cellular phone coverage is spotty at best). Luckily we met our guide along the dirt road leading to the falls.
A few wild guavas (lots along the trail) and an hour or so of hike later, we reached Kaangrian. The last few hundred meters were on slippery and muddy single tracks, but the trail is fully shaded.
So there we were, at lunch time, with nothing but a few cookies and chocolate bars. Lunch will have to wait. The area around the falls was cool and shaded, but the falls itself was in the open. Now we will have to wait.
The say patience is a virtue. I was glad we had plenty of it that day. Our guide and another local who tagged along decided to snooze it off, while we went around trying on different POVs, hoping and praying for some clouds to block the sun.
After more than 2 hours of waiting, just when we were about to pack up and leave, the sky went overcast. It was pure bliss. At that moment everybody went on a shooting frenzy (the guides are still snoozing). After a few minutes the sun shone again, but by that time we all had smiles on our faces.
More about Kaangrian Falls
- Kaangrian means "pungent smell" in the local dialect. This is because of guano from nearby bat cave(s).
- There is a second (much bigger) layer downstream but it requires a bit of climbing down slippery boulders and forest roots. (Reserved for the next visit)