Luang Prabang - Udomxai - Nga -Lathane-Pak Ou-LPQ

Discussion in 'Laos Road Trip Reports' started by mat.ward, Apr 28, 2007.

  1. mat.ward

    mat.ward Ol'Timer

    Mat and Jeremy. Two Bajas. 370km.

    It was a day of both sadness and relief when we sold our Minsks in Luang Prabang. We had intended to keep them for another week or so, but a German guy who seemed to think Minsks were the best motorbikes in the world, offered us US$650 for them (we had bought them for US$850 for both). This was after a good hammering during our trip, a couple of indicators smashed off etc, and mine needing new clutch plates. Sad to see them go, but Trace and I had definitely got our hundred bucks worth from them!

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    To both mourn and celebrate our loss of the Minsks I hired a Baja from Green Discovery, and Jeremy and I planned for a good honest ride the next day. David U had suggested we have a look at the road south from Nga as pickups had apparently been heading from Nga to Pak Ou.

    So we left the next morning at 6am and got to Oudomxai just on 9am to have breakfast. From there we headed south on 2W (the Chinese road that heads to Pak Beng) before turning left 14km from Oudomxai to head to Nga.

    The turn off to Nga
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    The dirt road to Nga was all-season and fast. Lots of concrete fords, so doable in the wet.
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    At Nga
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    Once past Nga the road was not quite as good but still OK. Easy on a Baja, and quite enjoyable.
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    There is one big river crossing where we had the Baja’s exhaust pipes flirting with the water.
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    It had a bridge of sorts but it was locked. Not sure what the story was, maybe for a fee it could be unlocked?
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    Then all of a sudden the road deteriorated and became far more fun. The road would be OK for a 4x4 but a bit tricky in places. On a Baja it was great, up and down, twisty, could get a bit of speed in places, a rollercoaster of a dirt road.

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    After about 40km on the poor road we hit the village Ban Lathane on the Mekong and carried on east on the north side of the river expecting the road we had been following to head towards Pak Ou. But no. It turned into a footpath that we could not ride.

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    So we headed back to ask if there was a road in the area to Pak Ou. Responses to this included shaken heads, and fingers pointed at the river as they repeated “Pak Ou#65533;E

    So we negotiated for a boat to Pak Ou for $16 and loaded up.

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    Just after we did this the backpacker boat from Houeyxai arrived and stopped (it was about 4pm). It was tricky getting the Bajas up the bank at Pak Ou, so maybe if anyone on a bigger bike does this road you might want to wait for the backpacker boat and head to LP.

    The backpacker boat crammed full. We had our spacious boat to ourselves.
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    Finished in LP and ready for a Beerlao
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    So if you feel like a big day loop from LP give this a go. Or head this way instead of the main road Oudomxai #65533;ELP.

    The loop is in yellow in the middle of this image:
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  3. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Matt
    Yet another good report & pix.
    Dont know anyone else, including "my hero" Watchara at Tammila guesthouse in Chiang Khong who has done this one, so congratulations - you probably have a first there for Laos.
    Glad you were able to do it after my hot tip, and even more impressed that you reported back on the board as so many dont.
     

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