Passing through another metal bridge, this one more precarious than the previous one we traversed on the way to the watchtower, we crossed over Wawa Dam’s raging water into the tranquility of the Wawa River on the other side.
The trail here becomes softer; grass-laden brown soil, compared to the rocky terrain off the dam’s mountainside. A few small shacks, very much like those found along rural areas dot the river’s edge.
I forget this is a rural area.
The proximity of Rodriguez (formerly called Montalban) to Manila can play tricks on one’s mind and I can’t seem to reconcile the nearby city’s barrage of pollution with the tranquility and peacefulness found here.
The deep green pool that eventually rages down Wawa Dam gets shallower as we walked further.
Huts are set up along the river’s banks and can be rented for a day by visitor’s for Php100.00. A local told us that the place is always packed on weekends. Families converge at the river for fun and relaxation. They bring food for picnics, swimwear for wading on the river’s shallow water, and trekking gear for navigating the many trails and caves found along the area.
I also saw some rafts with seats and cogon roofing that were docked along the bank that I guess were also for rent. Since we visited the place on a weekday, the area was devoid of tourists; perfect for shooting landscapes.
The water here is clean, as opposed to the write-ups I’ve read that it was polluted by the piggeries upstream. We were so tempted to have a go and swim along the river, but unfortunately, we didn’t bring any change of clothes. We had to content ourselves in shooting pictures and wading along the knee-deep waters.
Pastoral, was the word that came to my mind as we walked along the river’s bank and crossed its shallow waters.
The air was fresh and the water cool against our skin, ducks amble along with lazy cows as the locals go on with their daily routine; women washing clothes along the bank, kids swimming against the strong flow of the water, coal gatherers hiking down the mountain with a sackful of loads on their shoulders and fishermen harvesting the river’s bounty for his family’s supper later that evening.
A striking contrast that I wholeheartedly prefer over the bustling metropolis that lies just an hour away from the Wawa River.
Address: Rodriguez (formerly Montalban), Rizal, Calabarzon
Entrance Fee: None
How to get to Wawa Dam via Public Transport
Board an FX (Php45.00) at the Farmer’s Plaza Cubao (Terminal is in front of Jollibee)
Alight at Eastwood, Rizal (Ask the driver to drop you where you can board a jeep to Wawa)
Board a Wawa jeep (Php8.00) and alight at the terminal which is at Wawa Dam already.