This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

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An Aborigine tribe in the Philippines is currently making headlines for creating and riding ornately carved bikes made from wood.

This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

An Aborigine tribe in the Philippines is currently making headlines for creating and riding ornately carved bikes made from wood. Although the beautiful bikes were designed out of necessity and desire, as few Igolot-Garonne tribe members could afford a conventionally-made bicycle, people across the world are expressing a preference for these carved bikes.


Photographer Richard Haw captured photos of the extraordinary bicycles. The Japanese resident and his wife were on business in the Philippines when the unconventional “motorcycle” gang pulled into the town of Batad. Haw, that works for a games company, said:


“I was walking to my truck in the town when we were treated to the spectacle and it just so happens that I had my camera on hand and snapped the cowboy-inspired scooter zooming downhill. Owning a motorcycle is considered a status symbol for people of a humble background. Since most of them do not really earn enough to afford the real thing they would just make imitations of scooters by whatever means they have.”

This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

As you will notice from the pictures, the wooden bikes are a chance for the tribe members to show off their exceptional wood-carving skills. Several of the two-wheelers feature an animal theme, like the head of a dragon, lion, horse, etc.… With their sturdy bikes, tribesman can take part in their own road races.


The bicycles reach speeds of up to 25 mph as they race each other downhill. Unlike cyclists in bustling cities, the aborigine riders don't wear any protective gear or helmets. They instead race freely in their traditional highlander g-string, called a bahag, and a dyed red robe. Their attire distinguishes which tribe they belong to.


To slow down the bike, the tribesmen step on a wooden pedal. That action puts pressure on a piece of thick, recycled tire. The friction makes the scooter slow down; then, their feet do the rest. Haw’s wife, Elaine, is part Igorot. She commented, “When they race through the town, it is a chance to show off their scooters which is a source of pride for the carver.”


The tribe is part of a larger group of mountain tribes, and all referred to as the Igolot (or Irorot). They inhabit the island of Luzon, the biggest in the Philippines. As Pixelated Planet reported, the craftsmen happily share their creation with the rest of the village. They dress up in traditional costume before they ride together sometimes.


This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]

The Igolot thinks that their gods reside in natural objects, like mountains and trees. By carving ornate designs into their bikes, they show their respect for all. Sadly, the aborigine tribe is struggling against oppression to stay on their indigenous land. In their attempt to fight back, the Igolot tribe is pushing to be recognized as self-governed people so they can benefit from the resources which are plentiful in the mountains they inhabit.


Photo credit: Richard Haw


h/t Pixelated Planet, Shareably, The Mind Unleashed

COMMENTS

BLOGGER: 3
  1. these are indeed amazing seriously very amazing technique To slow down the bike, the tribesmen step on a wooden pedal. That action puts pressure on a piece of thick, recycled tire. The friction makes the scooter slow down; then, their feet do the rest. Haw’s wife, Elaine, is part Igorot. She commented, “When they race through the town, it is a chance to show off their scooters which is a source of pride for the carver.”
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Thinking Humanity: This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]
This Native Tribe In The Philippines Creates Ornately-Carved Bikes From Wood [Pictures]
An Aborigine tribe in the Philippines is currently making headlines for creating and riding ornately carved bikes made from wood.
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