Update on the road that goes south from Phonsavan to HWY 8 at Lak Ha.

Discussion in 'Laos Road Trip Reports' started by Moto-Rex, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. Moto-Rex

    Moto-Rex Moderator

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    #1 Moto-Rex, Mar 5, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2018
    This is a quick update on the road that heads South from Phonsavan, to HWY 8 at Lak Ha, via Mouang Khoune, Thathom, Thasi and Vieng Thong. (not sure of hwy number)

    Once at the end of HWY 8 at Lak Ha, you can go east to Lak Xao, and further on to the Vietnamese border at Na Phao, or west to Vieng Kham on HWY 13.

    This is a great way to cut out going to Pakxan when heading north or south.

    This is a fairly new road that cuts though some of the most scenic parts of Laos. There is a tight and twisty section that cuts though a mountain range, which is one of the best road rides anywhere.

    I rode up from Lak Ha to Phonsavan, its 300 kms, and took me about six hours. The section from Vieng Thong to Thasi, I saw only one car, it was like having the road to myself,….be aware, there’s no shops or fuel on that section, so fuel up and carry some extra water in case.


    How goods this? Just north of Lak Ha…picture says it all.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao1.

    It looked like the wrapping paper was just taken off this bridge.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao2.

    I remembered this river crossing from a pervious ride, and it didn’t look like this.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao3.

    This is how it looked only 14 months ago.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao4.

    The magnificent KLX on one of the many bridges along to way.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao5.

    LaosMotorcycleLakXao6.

    LaosMotorcycleLakxao7.

    Lao’s travelling salesman…..the true adventure riders, must just love this road now.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao8.

    Not only have the road riders got a smooth surface to ride on, the kids now have nice a tar playground to play on.
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao9.

    Also a great place to look after your little brother or sister......cute
    LaosMotorcycleLakXao10.

    This a good fun ride with stunning scenery, great little villages, that would be even better on a bigger bike than a KLX.

    Hope this road update helps anyone planning a trip. Battery went flat on my camera, so if you happen to ride this road, add a few photos to this report to show others just how good it is.

    Moto-Rex
     
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  2. Poompui

    Poompui Ol'Timer

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    Looks awesome!
    Will try that route later in the year.....
    Have a cool pic of a travelling Laos salesman taken on Hwy 10......

    Salesman_zps9d4a9060.
     
  3. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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    Woweee. Brilliant update there sexy rexy. Once I get wheels again it is definitely on my hit list.
     
  4. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

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    Wow, looks sportbike-worthy!!! Gotta get back to Laos asap!!! :mrgreen:
     
  5. Joraa Krabb

    Joraa Krabb Member

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    Great I will go this way on 2014 May
     
  6. Cbr2500r

    Cbr2500r Member

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    I just drove through this area a few days ago from Phonsavan to Konglor. I was debating whether to take this route or turn south at Muang Koun, but Google told me to go south. Wish I had seen this thread before! Oh well I'll take this road next time. I think the road is called route 1D.
     
  7. Big_Dave

    Big_Dave Ol'Timer

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    Is there a route to join Xepon with Lak Xao? Would need to be tar as I'm 2 up and will be a wet season ride.
     
  8. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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  9. Cutter

    Cutter Member

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    I'm considering taking the road from Vientiane east on highway 13 to highway 8 and then north on highway 1D to Phonsavan.

    Couple questions:

    Is this route all paved? Nice road?

    Are there gas stations along the way?

    Is this better than going back up north to Viang Vieng and then east to Phonsavan on highway 7?

    Thanks
     
  10. Moto-Rex

    Moto-Rex Moderator

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    Hi Cutter.
    The road east to the hwy 8 is a good paved road. Hwy 8 had a couple of road works last time I rode it, but nothing to worry about. The scenery on hwy 8 to the phonsavon turn off is impressive. You can break up the ride by staying in Khoun Kham which is a quant little town with plenty of guesthouses and restaurants. You can ride south from Khoun Kham to Kong Lor for a short out and back ride.
    Khoun Kham and Kong Lor are on the GT-Rider Laos map.

    Moto-Rex
     
  11. Cutter

    Cutter Member

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    Yup, Vientiane to kong Lor cave was a great ride all on paved roads.
    From kong lor cave i took highway 1D north to Phonsavan. Turned left a Pak Ngeun as highway 1D turned to dirt at this point. This road was great and all paved and comes out at Muang Khoun. South of Muang Khoun also appearsto be dirt on the 1D??
    Stayed a night in Phonsavan, which wasthe ugliest city I visited by far. Was planning on staying 2 nights but only stayed one and couldn't wait to leave in the morning.
    Highway 7 west out of Phonsavan was a great road, all paved.
     
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  12. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Ol'Timer

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    Gotta love that grin..

    Salesman_zps9d4a9060.

    I have found some of these blokes to be some of the friendliest on the roads.
    Smile, wave, stand up on the pegs and laugh while you ride along with them.

    Cheers
    Brian
     

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  13. Big_Dave

    Big_Dave Ol'Timer

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    They would have to be a goldmine of information on tracks and villages, places to see. Absolutely cant wait to get back to Laos.
     

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  14. Aga

    Aga New Member

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    Hi everyone!

    This is just to give you some update on the current situation on 1D route to Phonsavan.

    We drove it one month ago and it's still in very good technical condition. Going towards Phonsavan the first 200km it's a wonderful road in perfect condition (only two small 'surprises' which need to be repaired, but nothing serious). Then around 80-100 km from Phonsavan there are some chinese construction works and heavy machines moving around that area destroyed some of the tarmac. So there are some short sections which are one big potholes, passable - but not really pleasant. Then again it gets better as you get closer to Phonsavan. All the way the traffic was minimal and the views were very nice.

    We were worried about guesthouses on the way, but every 50-60km you can find something. Sometimes only one guesthouse and I'm not sure if all of them were open - at least we saw some signs.

    Also, as the area is slowly developing, there are some new gas stations appearing.

    And one last thing - google maps is wrong about the marking of this route. 1D goes through Thathom. Maps me is correct.

    Hope this will help someone!

    Safe travels! :)
     

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