A Chiang Dao Tea Loop - An Afternoon Ride

DavidFL

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Jan 16, 2003
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On the south side of Chiang Dao & just by the "Som O" police checkpoint at Kaeng Pan Tao there's a nice little concrete road that goes steeply up to the tea plantations.
I haven't been up here for years, but once upon a time it used to be a favourite dirt loop for hill tribes & the odd poppy field.
There used to be a confusing network of dirt trails, and many of them are now concrete but it is still a confusing network.

The turn off at the police checkpoint
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the police checkpoint
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most people are probably too busy watching the police & traffic at the checkpoint to notice the turn of perhaps, but it is signposted does take you to some amazing roads / trails & scenery.
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Its a tight narrow concrete road
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that winds its way up the mountain
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more to come
 

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DavidFL

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
12,230
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Chiang Khong
www.thegtrider.com
On the GTR MHS Loop map the trail network it looks like this
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On the map above it is the asphalt road from Kaeng Pan Tao.

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The elevation profile for the road coming in looks like this
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It's a straight 9 kms of concrete twisting its way up the mountain
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There's a couple of confusing turns towards the top, but basically you need to take the left ones.
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I made one wrong turn & ended up here
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the road actually continued on up a steeper slimy slope, but it started to look a little nasty for an old art like me exploring alone on a 650. A 250 would be nice & I'm sure it loops around to Pakia still, but whether it is dirt of concrete I don't know. Who's next.....

You back track & take the right
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to end up in the tea gardens
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at the very top there is an agricultural research station with a couple more forks to explore for someone
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It has some stunning views
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back track from the research station & take a right to continue down the hill & all the way down, back to the highway & R107.
It's a 13 kms descent
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the road is superior to the Kaeng Pan Tao concrete track
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There are some magnificent trees & forest cover along the way
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at altitude it is a very pleasant 28-30 celsius
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a couple of hairpin bends on the descent
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some fresh new asphalt
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then down onto the flat & the bamboo
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''

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past the elephant in the middle of nowhere
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& a short time later you are onto the highway & R107 again
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''

This Chiang Dao tea loop is a sweet afternoon ride.
Turn off at the Som O police checkpoint on R107, ride up into the hills for 9 kms & make a left & come back out on R107 7.5 kms south of the Som O police checkpoint & 3.6 kms north of the Mae Tamann turn off.
You could spend hours up in here there are so many roads & dirt trails.
All the riding is steep with endless blind corners, so you need to take care. IT reminds me a lot of the Muang Khong road if you have done that one. Similar scenery & steepness but not as spectacular.
Check it out sometime.

The GTR MHS Loop map is here
Mae Hong Son Loop Map
 

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