Long Weekend- Let's Ride! Bangkok - Loei - Nan!

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - Road Trip Reports' started by TonyBKK, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Left the Big Smoke bright and early on Friday morning- Neil on Triumph Sprint ST and me on Suzuki GSXR 1000 :wave:

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    Made excellent time- took the main highway to Saraburi then north to Petchabun on the 21. Took a left on the 2258 to enjoy the roller coaster twisties through Khao Kho and stopped there for an early lunch.
    Cool and foggy in Khao Kho, Petchabun!
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    These amazing flowers are in bloom all over the place at the moment.
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    Then north on 2196 to the Indo-China Highway #12 and some fast twisties to Lom Sak then on to "Nam Nao Circuit" :happy5:
     
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  3. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    After blasting highway 12 through Nam Nao National Park (who says there aren't any liter bike roads in Thailand?!) we took the back road to Loei. 2016 is an amazing roller coaster ridge road with stunning views.
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    Checked in at the King Hotel. Nothing better than a nice cold beer after a long ride! Followed by an in room massage.

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    Our fearless leader sent me an SMS earlier in the day to advise that he was riding to Loei from Vientiane! Fantastic! The mighty Africa Twin towered over all the other bikes, but was in need of some tlc as the front sprocket was again loose on the drive shaft. Over 300,000km on that old Honda and it still looks fantastic!

    Sarge arrived from Khon Kaen on his Kawasaki ER6n and Rob took the LONG WAY from Chiang Mai to Loei, racking up over 800km that day on his Yamaha FZ1- Respect!

    In front of the King Hotel, Loei-

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    It was very quiet in Loei on account of an election so most of the nightspots were closed, but we still enjoyed an excellent dinner at Chris's Steakhouse and I enjoyed catching up with David at Baan Jrua Yai (sp?) over a bottle of Jameson that he had picked up from duty free earlier in the day.

    Slept like a baby in my big comfy bed at the King Hotel :clap:
     
  4. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Brilliant ride out to Bo Klua on the 1169 and 1081 :thumbup:
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    Recommended restaurant and resort in Bo Klua, Nan:

    Bo Klua Restaurant and Resort: http://www.bokluaview.com/

    Located just up the mountain, overlooking Bo Klua and the valley.

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    View from the restaurant:
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  5. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    On a whim we decided to head south on the 1333 to see where it goes. On some maps it appears to dead end, but on google maps it seems to connect with the 1257 and go through to Mae Charim and Santisuk. Only one way to find out for sure- lets hit it!
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    Nan always seems to hold some surprises.
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    Route 1333 to 1257- What a cool discovery!
     
  6. Dougal

    Dougal Ol'Timer

    Nice one Tony! You're one of the few out there.

    Which route did you take from Loei to Nan? Tried the ferry crossing yet?
     
  7. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    I'm guessing people don't ride it because on some paper maps and GPS it appears to dead-end.

    The road started off in great condition but kept getting smaller and smaller, rougher and rougher, and we briefly considered turning around, but I'm glad we pushed on through!

    Simply amazing!
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  8. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Next time you're in Nan check out the 1333 to nowhere!

    The first 10 minutes or so it's a beautiful twisty road in perfect repair-



    :happy5:
     
  9. Changnoi1

    Changnoi1 Ol'Timer

    Great report, seems I missed a great trip. Good selling point for going to Nan.
     
  10. nikster

    nikster Ol'Timer

    Thanks you guys, this day riding around Nan was the best ever - awesome!

    Including the awesome discovery of the 1333 - I was at one point convinced it would just turn into a footpath or jungle trail, but no, it kept going on, and on, and the area there is just stunning.

    All perfect terrain for the Versys, too. There was a bit of high speed racetrack in the beginning and end, lots of fantastic corners and views, some very light dirt, bad roads, bike was great fun and rather capable at all of it, amazing. I was really happy with the grip on the Diablo Rosso IIs, they are really sticky and predictable, yet look like they'll still last a good while with now 5k on the clock.
     
  11. Franz

    Franz Ol'Timer

    Tony many thanks for taking fotos and posting !! Thanks also to all on this ride for the very pleasant company.
    The 1333 was also for me a total surprise as Nikster mentioned, an amazing road, just imagine it in the future with a new tarmac.......on the FJR it was a little hard work, also Neil on his Sprint GT lost some more sweat than others but we managed though could never keep up with Nikster and Tony of course.
    As always was too lazy to take fotos so there's only one I took with my crap Nokia C3 on our last evening at dinner:
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    Just MotoRex and BrianBkk missing as late for dinner, took them a little longer to arrive in Nan 55555555555........
    And the most wonderful thing, just imagine Rex on a street bike, yes he rented a Versys for this trip and did not put his feet down in every corner, just had a big grin on his face when all the others got troubled on this little dirt track part.

    Enjoyed everything as nothing went wrong this time, the CNX to Nan and back trip with Nikster kicking the shyte out of the Versys, the nice staff at the Eurngkhum Hotel, the nice staff at the lunch place in BoKlua, all the guys we were with. Hope this one gets an ENCORE soon !!
    Cheers, Franz
     
  12. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Yes- big thanks to all for a fantastic weekend!

    The larger the group the more potential for problems yet I have to say this one of the best tours yet! Not a single accident, mechanical problem or any other problem the entire weekend.

    I guess the biggest "drama" to report would be Frank's puncture at the hotel? Took him all of 15 minutes to go have it plugged and off we went. :happy1:
     
  13. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Here's Route 1333, Part Deux! [​IMG]



    At about 1:30 we slow down to marvel over the amazing view from the ridge road- Wow, simply Wow! Hard to keep one's eyes on the road with such stunning views! Watch this video in HD to get a sense for the natural beauty.

    The road gets smaller and rougher as we go, you see Frank putting his foot down through a turn (~4:40) as there's a lot of sand and gravel. This road was a bit of work for the fellas on the big sport touring bikes!

    We briefly stopped around 6:15 as I think we were all thinking this road might simply disappear into the jungle, but it was a beautiful day and we were all having fun so all agreed to carry on and see where it would lead! Notice that we haven't passed a single vehicle for many miles.

    At ~12:30 the rough road is replaced by clean smooth blacktop! Eureka! I think, as I twist the throttle, but just a little bit further, the goat path of a road resumes, and if anything, is even rougher than before! [​IMG]

    Stopped a few minutes later to let the rest of the gang catch up and to marvel at the view- looking back the way we've just come:

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  14. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Ol'Timer

    A few more pics of the great scenery in Nan..

    It was a really great trip and Rex showed me some really nice roads back to Chiang Mai.

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    Very steep climb to be followed by some land slide, but mostly messy road works..
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    Big Bike Thailand
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    Rex feeding the wild life
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  15. nikster

    nikster Ol'Timer

    +1 awesome video Tony! The 1333 was the big adventure - nobody knew where it was going, the GPSs were giving conflicting info, parts washed out, unbeatable scenery - great stuff!

    Love that last pic Brian 55555
     
  16. Rhodie

    Rhodie Ol'Timer

    Great report and an ambitious weekend ride Tony. :clap:
    Good to see Rex back in country - welcome home matey.
     
  17. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Whoever designed this road MUST be a biker no? Whoever it is, I'd like to shake his hand and buy him a beer! What a road!!!
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    A short clip of the 1081-
     
  18. Changnoi1

    Changnoi1 Ol'Timer

    Just made a reply but it seems gone .... did anyone make a KML-file of the trip?

    Chang Noi
     
  19. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Not sure but I think Brian may have recorded the route on his Garmin GPS- I found this on his facebook:

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  20. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    I'm a noob when it comes to real GPS. For road trips Google Maps on my iPhone has always been more than adequate for me. But now that I'm getting into off-road riding I can appreciate the value of a real GPS.

    Anyway- here's the route we did on Sunday:

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    And here's a Google Maps link: https://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=Thanon+Mahawong&daddr=bo+klua+to:%E0%B8%99%E0%B8%99.+4016+to:18.9441176,101.0302959+to:Mano&hl=en&ie=UTF8&ll=18.956948,101.128464&spn=0.526664,1.056747&sll=18.955974,101.068382&sspn=0.263334,0.528374&geocode=FQV_HgEdbMMBBg%3BFVkwJAEdfIoHBikzHpB41tAnMTGAcor6xUYDAw%3BFWTJIQEdOFoIBg%3BFXUQIQEdl5kFBikjzc8QkcEnMTEA71LPxUYDEw%3BFdB8HgEdaMEBBg&mra=dpe&mrsp=3&sz=12&via=3&t=m&z=11

    I know that there are some programs that can translate a Google Maps link into a GPS .kml file, but I've never tried to do that as I don't own a GPS yet :)

    Happy Trails!

    Tony
     
  21. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Ol'Timer

    I will post the GPX files under the Tracks section of the forum soon / may be tonight :)
    Detailing the roads etc taken.
    This will be from Chiang Mai, to Nan
    Nan loop Rex, Frank and I did on the first day through the mud slide / road works (would avoid that or go up and turn around at the road works)
    This is the graph with the very step elevation up to 1,700 metres from 200 metres.

    Then the day ride / mini loop with Tony and Gang
    Ride back to Chiang Mai.

    Cheers
    Brian
     
  22. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Another vid- this one showing a couple washouts and a landslide near the end route 1333. What a contrast to the beginning, eh?

    Washouts and Landslide on Route 1333, Nan, Thailand. Suzuki GSXR 1000 Bike Cam!



     
  23. Changnoi1

    Changnoi1 Ol'Timer

    Thanks Tony .... good to see there is more as 1 route 1257 ..... I took for a part the part between the 1081 and the other 1257. That part has some steep parts, gravel and I was never sure as if there would be a road after the next curve. Well that beats the boring roads of Europe ... although I was yesterday thinking "I would love to ride in Austria or Switzerland in the summer".

    But still not see route 1333?
    I use "Easy Trails" on my Iphone (I think free or very cheap) to record my tracks. They can be exported by email or Wifi as GPX, KML or KMZ file. Does stats also, very easy to use.

    Chang Noi
     
  24. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    The 1333 is the road that connects the 1081 and 1257 via Phu Fa. For some reason Google Maps is showing the road number as 4016, but the actual signs show 1333.

    I have MotionX GPS on my iPhone and it can record tracks in GPX format.

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  25. Moto-Rex

    Moto-Rex Ol'Timer

    After being invited on this tour of the hills in and around Nan, I decided to park the KLX and hire a Versy from Mr Mechanic, to see what the road riders get up to while Im playing in the mud.
    I hadn’t been back in Thailand long, so as well as enjoying the ride, it was great to meet up with Brian, Tony and Franz again, as well as meeting a few riders that I hadn’t meet before.

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    It was a great 4 days riding, 4 with Brian, 2 with Frank, and 1 day of havoc with the Bangkok Blasters. All good fun.

    Thanks for the invite guys, look forward to doing it again soon.

    Moto-Rex
     
  26. ronwebb

    ronwebb Ol'Timer

    Well it looks like you got to play in the mud after all Rex! I love the look of that 1333!
     

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