~ REVISITED ~
. . . . . . . . . .
trip to the Philippines in the year 2000, I followed up on a
request to investigate the
former Gaines Beach. If you ever partied at this location, or knew Ernest Gaines and his wife
personally, I'm sure you will find this page interesting.
The sign that we found posted along side the highway in Barrio Barretto. Note that the sign says "Former Gaines Beach" and that the beach is now named "Pines Beach Resort".
A bar we found located between the highway and beach area. Not sure if this bar was there during the time of Gaines Beach. The sign above suggests the name of this bar as "Bamboo Inn".
PHOTO #3 ... PHOTO
#4 ... PHOTO
These photos shows what the beach area looks like in Subic City where we hired the boat that took us across to Gaines Beach. This location is directly next to White Rock Beach.
A look at our transportion we hired for the trip across water to Gaines Beach.
PHOTO #7 ... PHOTO
Getting prepared to set way for Gaines Beach.
Our navigators for the trip to Gaines Beach and back. Subic City in the background.
PHOTO #10 ... PHOTO
A look at White Rock Beach as we were departing for Gaines Beach.
PHOTO #12 ... PHOTO
#13 ... PHOTO
#14 ... PHOTO
Coming up on Pequena Island on our way to Gaines Beach.
Passing Pequena Island on our way to Gaines Beach.
PHOTO #17 ... PHOTO
Arriving at Gaines Beach.
Beach area. Note painted sections on trees done by former Gaines Beach.
PHOTO #20 ... PHOTO
Remnants from the former Gaines Beach.
Pond located not far from the former bar area of Gaines Beach.
Former Gaines Beach Rooms. Still in good condition and being used.
PHOTO #24 ... PHOTO
The outdoor partying area located next to the former Gaines Beach Bar.
PHOTO #26 ... PHOTO
#27 ... PHOTO
#28 ... PHOTO
Former bar of Gaines Beach. This I found to be a sad site.
Another out building located behind the bar location. Not sure what this building was and no one could tell me. Tons of over growth making it impossible to approach this building
We asked to see the location for the resting place of Ernest Gaines. This is a photo of our guide.
PHOTO #32 ... PHOTO
Now for the saddest part of our trip to Gaines Beach. The resting place of Ernest Gaines himself. We found two American Flags located on the site. One flag had showed age. The other was much newer. We made sure to place the flags uniformally over his resting place before leaving. A prayer and salute was also rendered.
PAST HISTORY OF ERNEST GAINES AND GAINES BEACH
Ernest Junior Gaines. Yes, the J. stood for Junior. He was baptized Ernest Gaines Jr. with no middle name or initial. The Navy recruiter screwed up on his enlistment papers and put Jr. as the middle name since the middle name area on the papers were blank.
Remembering one of the finest former delights of the Philippines. Seems just like yesterday, (1977) that me and my "niece" streaked the bar one night and Ernie got quite a kick out of it. Of course, 'Momma" disapproved. He started out with a Banca Boat factory from the remains of the WWII Sub Base. His workers, not understanding the difference between 220V and 110V promptly burned up most of his stateside tools. So much for the boat enterprise, however, Ernie built boats as late as 1975. Many of his boat are probably still in service. He built about 120 24 foot "Thunderbird" sailboats there. Most went stateside and located in San Diego.
Because of its somewhat sheltered location, boaters started to visit there for picnics on the beach. Capitalizing on the potential for a new source of income, Ernie and his wife built about 4 duplex nipa huts for the visitors. Later, he built several singles for the visiting servicemen from Subic. All that he officially served at his beach house was beverages, but with sincere pleading from his regulars, he did provide a limited menu for adequate sustenance until we returned to town. Although he could have exploited his property into a first class resort, he chose to keep it mostly morally clean and aimed at the family trade instead. But he did make exceptions for friends.
Only the ones who have experienced Gaines' Beach, (and its sheltered waters) can fully appreciate the true Tropical Magic of their experience. Totally Priceless! Those times are missed and so is Ernie. Written By Don.
PHOTOS FROM THE PAST - GAINES BEACH
1976 - #011 - 331k - ERNIE WITH A
PET BIRD (Posted 9-26-11)
1976 - #012 - 408k - ERNIE WITH A PET BIRD (Posted 9-26-11)
1976 - #013 - 458k - BOAT DOCK AT GAINES BEACH (Posted 9-26-11)
1978 - #001 - 131k - A GIRL WHO WAS A GOOD FRIEND OF ERNIE'S WIFE LINDA
1978 - #002 - 092k - PRETTY GIRL ON THE BEACH NAMED EMILY AUTHER
1978 - #003 - 088k - SUNRISE FROM THE BAR
1978 - #004 - 104k - BOAT LEAVING FOR BARRIO BRETTO WITH LINDA AND TWO OTHERS
1978 - #005 - 092k - VIEW OF ISLAND ACROSS TO BARRIO BRETTO FROM THE BAR - SOME CALLED IT MAGSAYSAY ISLAND
1978 - #006 - 108k - ANOTHER SUNRISE FROM THE BAR
1978 - #007 - 105k - ERNEST GAINES NEW YEARS EVE PARTY
1978 - #008 - 080k - ERNIE IN DECEMBER OF 1978
1978 - #009 - 101k - ERNIES WIFE LINDA IN DECEMBER OF 1978
1978 - #010 - 121k - ANOTHER PHOTO OF EMILY AUTHER
FINAL BITS OF INFORMATION
We inquired with the present tendents of the former Gaines Beach to the where abouts of Miss Gaines. It was thought that she sold the bar shortly after the death of her husband Erine and came to the US where she remarried.
There was also a building built close to the beach toward the Subic side of the former Gaines Beach Bar area. It can be seen in photo #17 back in the trees. The ramp you see extending out to the water in that same photo, looked to be from a lane out of a bowling alley.
There did not seem to be much activity at this location. Looked to be all Filipino that worked or lived in the area. No Americans were seen.
Karl Welteke (a former naval diver living in the PI) and a group of others hiked through the former Gaines Beach property and found it vacated.
The wife was visiting family in the PI in May. She checked on Gaines beach during her visit and found those that stated the area is now for sale but has be taken over by Muslim Squatters from Mindanao looking for work.
I will be visiting the Former Gaines Beach on my next trip..... and probably every trip there after.
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