Road conditions up to Phongsali

Discussion in 'Laos Road Trip Reports' started by Dodraugen, Dec 25, 2014.

  1. Dodraugen

    Dodraugen Ol'Timer

    Anybody have been up to Phongsali lately and can tell a little about the road conditions up there?

    I am thinking about going there in january on a 660 Tenere two up.

    I see from Google maps there are two roads taking off from R 13, one is R 1A which takes off from Oudomxai and another one a bit further west/west-north-west leading up towards Phongsali. The latter isnt marked with a number on Google maps but seems to take off from near a place called Ban Houalouang or something like that.

    Are both of those roads doable on a 660 two up?

    How about the road up to the China border? Doable, interesting points along the road?

    Thanks in advance!
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  3. Joraa Krabb

    Joraa Krabb Member

    Oudomxai on R13/R1A is well pave road until Pongsali but Boun Neua to China border is between construction .
    another Road from Boun tai to Namor tai is trial road not suitable for two up.
  4. Philigran

    Philigran Member

    Yep, coming from Oudomxai is no problem at all. Not familiar with the other roads ...
  5. Dodraugen

    Dodraugen Ol'Timer

    Rode up to Phong Sali from Oudomxai january 17 and back to Oudomxai two days later.

    The first 30 km out from Oudomxai is terrible. The road surface that probably once where paved are completely smashed and broken. Just big stones and potholes all over. First and second gear only. The next 30-40 km up to the first major junction are similar as above metioned but the surface is not completely broken, just partly.

    And then the mountains and curves start.... :D. Road surface not too bad - but very curvy and mountainous.

    The last leg in to Phong Sali theres a lot of road construction going on, so beware.

    On a 250 cc - no problem. On a bigger bike alone - ok though demanding. On a bigger bike two up - quite demenading, and not for the faint hearted.

    But ut was a very interesting trip and rewarding as well. Only 3-4 other farangs in Phong Sali at the time. Of all places visited in Laos - only Attapeu had less.....

    Beware - Phongsali is a cold place. 5-6 degrees at night in the middle of january, and no hotels or guesthouses seemed to have any heaters in the rooms. Bring your knitted long undies....
  6. Moto-Rex

    Moto-Rex Moderator

    Thanks for the update on the road conditions, and the reminder that it gets really cold up there.


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