Pai - Wiang Haeng - Chiang Dao. Muddy trails and mighty mountains

Moto-Rex

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Jan 5, 2008
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Pai - Wiang Haeng - Chiang Dao. Muddy trails and mighty mountains

This was a great dirt and tarmac ride from Pai to Chaing Dao via Wiang Haeng.

There’s plenty of different ways to get to Wiang Haeng from Pai,..I chose to ride down hwy 1095 to the entrance of the Huay Nam Dang National Park, then head north which takes you through Ban Mai and onto Wiang Haeng.
You can cut across to Muang Khong from Ban Mai..I rode this track a few months ago, and its on the new Mae Hong Son Loop map. From Muang Khong it’s a tacmac road down to Chiang Dao. Going this way would have been a lot shorter but I wanted to check out the dirt track that runs between Wiang Haeng and Muang Khong.

The way
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There is a entrance fee of 200 baht to enter the National Park, but if you tell them your going on to Chiang Dao they let you in for free.

The first few kilometres into the park its a nice tarmac road.
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It soon turns to dirt and stays that way until you get to Wiang Haeng.
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There’s a few villages with happy little tackers that will give you a wave as you ride past.
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The dirt and trees make way for concrete and rice a few Kilometres south of Wiang Haeng.
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After lunch in Wiang Haeng it was back on the trial, heading south to Muang Khong.
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The track that runs from Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong is an absolute winner. One of the best trails I’ve ridden.
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I came to this classic suspension bridge, but there was no way it would carry the weight of the KLX and its rider. So through the river it would have to be.
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The river wasn’t all that deep really, so the KLX didn’t need Moses to part the way.
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Great riding through here.
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I stopped at this beautiful spot by a river which followed the trail for a lot of the way.
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I think this is the spot that Ianyonok and Chris stopped for a dip in this report below.
https://www.gt-rider.com/thailand-motorcycle-forum/showthread.php/41027-Wonderful-Off-Roading-in-the-North

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I did come across the army near the river, and they were looking pretty serious. There was about 20 heavily armed soldiers, they stopped me and asked what I was doing, and where I was going before letting me continue on to Muang Khong.
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This bridge was the only access to a small village.
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Once at Muang Khong its an amazing concrete road all the way to Chiang Dao.
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Great views of Chiang Dao along the way.
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Chiang Dao to Muang Khong would be a great out and back ride for anyone on a road bike.
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I stayed in this bungalow at the bottom of Chaing Dao which is about 5 kms from the town of Chaing Dao on hwy 107. Its clearly marked on the map. Theres plenty of rooms and restaurants there.
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This is the track that cuts across from Ban Mai to Muang Khong. I rode this track a few months ago, and it’s a good ride.
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The Ban Mai - Muang Khong track is on the new Mae Hong son loop map.
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The river at Muang Khong which is a beautiful little town.
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Moto-Rex
 

Rod Page

Ol'Timer
Jan 7, 2010
823
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Nice report Neil.

It shows there's plenty of good riding close at hand to be had for those living in & Around Chiang Mai.
 

Djosmann

New Member
May 24, 2016
1
3
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Chiang Mai
Mid September 2017 I went with my colleague Khun Bom from Pai via Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong and finally via Sop Kai back to Chiang Mai. We went over the weekend for 2 riding days in literally wet season. We rented 2 CRF 250.

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The first day from Pai to Wiang Haeng were 55 km on 1322. It was fairly easy. No rain but some parts were muddy with deep and soft ruts, filled with water. We plan to use this route in the future for our tours with big bikes before the road might be asphalted.
We operate with BMW GS 700/800 and 1200 www.biketourasia.com.

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We stayed overnight near Wiang Haeng (approx. 3 km before in Piang Luang) at Ban Suan Chomview (084 487 53 99). Basic resort but clean rooms and a nice restaurant next door. No breakfast.

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(Archive photo)

Next morning, after the rain stopped (It was raining all night) we went from Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong along the Maetaeng River. What a beautiful stretch with many water crossings. Some parts were very muddy but our CRF 250 mastered this part with ease. Only a big tree blocked our way once. These around 25 km took us about 1,5 hours. This road is wonderful !

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In Muang Khong we had local lunch. From here you can either drive via Chiang Dao on an asphalted small road or you choose off road to Sop Kai. The locals said this off road section is easy, so we decided to go for it.
What would have been easy in dry season was hard work after all that rain. There was some climbing on slippery muddy roads. One section of about 6 km took us 2 hours :)-)
Hard work but pure fun. 11 km before Sop Kai is a local village where you turn left. The last stretch was easier. We finally made it to Sop Kai in the afternoon and enjoyed a coffee at the beautiful new coffee place called Cafe in Wild, overlooking the Maetaeng River.

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We finally made it to Sop Kai in the afternoon and enjoyed a coffee at the beautiful new coffee place called Cafe in Wild, overlooking the Maetaeng River.

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ZCM

Ol'Timer
Jun 23, 2011
306
275
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cm
Oh wow Djosmann, those photos are fantastic!
I did the Wiang Haeng loop a few years back (not to Pai. Just the loop from outside of Chiang Dao and all the way back around).
At the time I hated it, because i was so scared on gravel, so my body was stiff for most of the ride and ended up aching badly.
Completely dry though, no mud.
I want to be able to feel more confident on riding on mud etc..so have been taking a few dirt riding courses to help my confidence level.
Seems to be working!
These photos and rides that people are doing are so inspiring! :D
 

DavidFL

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
12,481
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Chiang Khong
www.thegtrider.com
Mid September 2017 I went with my colleague Khun Bom from Pai via Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong and finally via Sop Kai back to Chiang Mai. We went over the weekend for 2 riding days in literally wet season. We rented 2 CRF 250.

View attachment 114840
The first day from Pai to Wiang Haeng were 55 km on 1322. It was fairly easy. No rain but some parts were muddy with deep and soft ruts, filled with water. We plan to use this route in the future for our tours with big bikes before the road might be asphalted.
We operate with BMW GS 700/800 and 1200 www.biketourasia.com.

View attachment 114841

View attachment 114850

We stayed overnight near Wiang Haeng (approx. 3 km before in Piang Luang) at Ban Suan Chomview (084 487 53 99). Basic resort but clean rooms and a nice restaurant next door. No breakfast.

View attachment 114842
(Archive photo)

Next morning, after the rain stopped (It was raining all night) we went from Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong along the Maetaeng River. What a beautiful stretch with many water crossings. Some parts were very muddy but our CRF 250 mastered this part with ease. Only a big tree blocked our way once. These around 25 km took us about 1,5 hours. This road is wonderful !

View attachment 114854 View attachment 114856

In Muang Khong we had local lunch. From here you can either drive via Chiang Dao on an asphalted small road or you choose off road to Sop Kai. The locals said this off road section is easy, so we decided to go for it.
What would have been easy in dry season was hard work after all that rain. There was some climbing on slippery muddy roads. One section of about 6 km took us 2 hours :)-)
Hard work but pure fun. 11 km before Sop Kai is a local village where you turn left. The last stretch was easier. We finally made it to Sop Kai in the afternoon and enjoyed a coffee at the beautiful new coffee place called Cafe in Wild, overlooking the Maetaeng River.

View attachment 114858 View attachment 114859 View attachment 114860 View attachment 114861

We finally made it to Sop Kai in the afternoon and enjoyed a coffee at the beautiful new coffee place called Cafe in Wild, overlooking the Maetaeng River.

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Great update - many thanks.
They were supposed to be working on the Pai - Wiang Haeng roads, from the WIang Haeng end - did you see anything going on?

This pic is a beauty
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That Wiang Haeng - Muang Khong trail is still one of the most beautiful.

If you go out that way again check out Piang Luang for this accommodation

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Piang Luang and Wieng Haeng Accommodation
 

scotty007

Ol'Timer
Feb 23, 2004
195
66
28
Nice one Djosmann, enjoyed reading your nicely written and photographed trip report! The CRF does indeed seem to manage pretty well everything in its stride!
 

Moto-Rex

Moderator
Jan 5, 2008
944
286
63
Cool report Djosmann.

I love the dirt ride from Wiang Haeng to Muang Khong, but Ive never riding the track from Muang Khong to Sop Kai as you did. It looks real good.

The little coffee shop looks like a ripper.

Thanks for the write up.

Moto-Rex