Seven hours for 13 kms record

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - Road Trip Reports' started by saxonator, Jun 1, 2009.

  1. saxonator

    saxonator Ol'Timer

    Seven hours for 13 kms record

    Starting at Doi Kham just behind the Royal Flora at 11 am. As our plan was to explore new off-road tracks we turned right just at the sign of Wat Mae Prig. This little offroad part looked very similar to the one from Samoeng to Doi Pui. After few km’s the road ended and there was a sign of the Chiang Mai Night Safari and something written in Thai underneath. There was no connection, so we turned around and found a nice uphill track there. The surface was nice and the traction good. We met some local people on Honda Dreams coming down the hill. We didn’t stop because it was to steep. Then we arrived on a platform. From there one has great view over Chiang Mai. We continued uphill not sure where the track would lead us to. [​IMG]
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    Then the track was getting too steep for our XR’s and the rain was not far either. So we turned left in the middle of the jungle and tried to work our way around the mountain in diagonal manner. Then we met another local guy and he told us we were near to Phuping Palace and that there would be a small trail leading up to there. We tried to follow his instructions, but now it started raining cats and dogs.

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    Now it was very difficult to get a grip, even with my brand-new Motocross tires. I’ve never been on more slippery surface then that and I know the rainy season and most offroad tracks around here. This was just too much. George had even more trouble, with his worn off tire. I couldn’t believe it – it was already close to 3 pm and we still weren’t near anything. After trying again and again to find a connection we decided to turn around at 4 in the afternoon. The heavy rain and the fact that we got almost no traction made us do so.

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    George and me fell down a couple of times or just slipped away. We were totally exhausted and our stamina was gone. In many places we just had to push and pull to get up. No grip whatsoever. Then Georges bike wouldn’t start and we tried for more then half an hour to fix that, but no. George had a rope with him and I had to pull him from now on. This is not so difficult on a road but offroad is a total different story. So I fell over, the we fell over and so forth. Unfortunately I couldn’t take pictures because of the heavy rain.

    It was 5 pm and I tried to convince George to hurry up. By 6 it can be already very dark in the jungle and I didn’t want to spend the night there under no circumstances. So I always had to remind him to keep going. It’s a difficult task if your stamina is gone, but somehow you gotta do it. It was 6:30 now the rain wouldn’t stop and we still had a long way to go. George didn’t wanna leave the bike overnight in the jungle so I had to keep pulling him. The sight was now next to zero with the spars light of the XR. Then we finally arrived at the downhill passage and I was released from this burden. The track was like a small river now and we just had to follow the water downwards. Out of a sudden G’s bike started running again and now we had to head lights leading the way. When we arrive at the platform I couldn’t resist taking some photos from Chiang Mai at night. I didn’t have a tripod so they’re a little blurry.
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    Then we lost the track again for one moment. We turned around again and then got on the track again and arrive at a different point at the waterfall. From now on it was just peanuts. At the first shop at the Royal Flora we stopped for some drinks and were very happy we made it back without any further circumstances. What a trip! Even we did only about 13 kms offroad it took us so long – just unbelievable. I definitely want to try this track again but maybe in the dry season. Lessons I’ve learned:

    1. Always take water with you
    2. Eat before you go
    3. Make sure you got enough tool, spare tubes etc
    4. Make sure your tires are in good condition
    5. And last not least make a prayer before you leave
     
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  3. Marco

    Marco Ol'Timer

    Saxonator

    Brilliant trip and story,, you guys seems to have fun even with 13km trip :p
    that dart time in the jungle must felt bit scary,, never know what is waiting in there...
     
  4. saxonator

    saxonator Ol'Timer

    Thanks Marco :lol: ,

    acutally riding in the dark was kinda fun. But one should be prepared for that. We're just some stupid guys, that never think of something like this. So far we've been allways very lucky. May the luck be with us.
     
  5. Ally

    Ally Ol'Timer

    Saxonator, great report as usual, thanks for sharing.

    Can you please be a little more precise about where you started your journey. You mention Wat Mae Prig. Thats a new one on me.

    This is on my door step and would like very much to find that track when the weather is better for my skills.

    Thanks & keep them coming.

    Ally
     
  6. saxonator

    saxonator Ol'Timer

    Thanks for the kind words! Well, to explain where we are is a little tricky.
    Let's say you pass the Doi Kham Resort on the right, then just before comming back on the mainroad take a left. Then keep going until the road splits in 2. Then take the right. Pass thru some kind of village and then not far from there you will see the sign Wat Mar Prig and just at the height of the sign there is an offroad track on the right. Just keep riding up there for about 1 1/2 kms then you should see a small trail going uphill take this one. It's actually a foot path for walking and not especially made for motorbikes. Be careful because it's pretty steep. The messy part is just underneath the Phu Phing Palace. If it rains, only pushing will do the job. Believe me, I'm an experienced rider and I never ever had problems getting my bike going, but yesterday I had. Cheers Rudi
     
  7. cm das

    cm das Ol'Timer

    Yeah Rudi, I've hiked that trail before. Never dreamed of trying to ride it! For the record, the village where you can find Wat Mae Prig is called Mae Hia Noi. There are a number of dirt tracks heading up & out from there. I've explored a few of them on foot & mountain bike but wouldn't feel comfortable on my D-Tracker. The one exception is, if you pass Doi Kham Resort & turn left at the T, then bear left at the fork, you'll climb up a short steep hill & at the top the road turns to dirt. Follow this track down the hill & it'll take you to the Samoeng Road. I almost always take this shortcut when I'm on my mountain bike. Did it once on the D-Tracker with no problem.

    Paul
     
  8. Ally

    Ally Ol'Timer

    Thanks Rudi & Paul for clearing that up, now I know exactly where you are talking about.

    Geeez ! That track in the wet ! I have only just been up it less than a kilometer and thought different about going further. That was on a Wave 2 years ago but I guess I will leave that one till the winter when it's dry!

    Ally
     
  9. saxonator

    saxonator Ol'Timer

    Hey Paul,
    thanx for the info. I wasn't aware, that this is called Mae Hia Noi. All in all I must say - for sure I will go checking again, but next time more prepared. The short cut to the samoeng road I know for a long time. This area used to be all dirt track and is only tarmac since a couple of years. Chiang Mai was such a beauty, when everything was still dirt.
     
  10. Rhodie

    Rhodie Ol'Timer

    Cracking ride report of endurance over adversity!
    You have proved the true adventurer's credo of it not being the arrival,
    but the journey getting there.
    Bravo!
     
  11. saxonator

    saxonator Ol'Timer

    Thanks Rhodie,

    highly apreciate your comment, I totally agree. In Germany we call it "Enduro" riding, which is nothing more then endurance. Especially here in Thailand it is many times misunderstood. They think off-road should be more like motocross. I don't like fast tracks so much any more, I like small trails with challenges.
     

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