Mae Sariang - Tha Ta Fang / Burmese Border, Offroad!

KTMphil

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Mae Sariang - Tha Ta Fang / Burmese Border, An Offroad Adventure

Got an email from Colin who gave us permission to post this trip he did. He's probably the best source of information of road routes in Thailand as he's done most several times!

The route 1194, 4011

Total distance 90 km


I took the 1194 out of town heading towards Mae Sam Laep, then took a right onto the 4011 for the Salawin National Park. Once inside the National Park the road is concrete for a very short time then unmade




As I quickly climb its gets a little foggy and its quite a chilly start













Thats all I need, fog but thankfully it soon disappears



Low level cloud through the trees



I see the first person since entering the National Park



Those clouds are lower than me



A couple of walkers come past










Its not a bad surface at the moment, thankfully theres no other traffic kicking up a dust storm






Riding along the ridge and some great scenery






I suddenly hit a longish muddy section with deep puddles that has the bike sliding around




I do a few water crossings but not too deep



Just what I don't need, another stream joining the one that I have already crossed about six times, hopefully no more water crossings




More water crossings, probably about thirty of them in total


In places theres a narrow ledge that I can ride along that saves me a few crossings




Here I have to ride in the water for a way, so far I have managed to stay totally dry






The road climbs and I get a brief break from the water




The first signs of civilization that I have seen for a couple of hours



I don't need any chillies to warm me up I am sweating from the exercise that I am getting



















Back to lots more water crossings. I was going to do this trip a month ago, I am glad that I didnt try then as its only just about doable today with the water getting deeper as more streams merge



Six km before Tha Ta Fang and I see the first four wheel vehicle since Mae Sariang








Further on and there's a digger




Nearing Tha Ta Fang and its out of the water and some more great scenery, I am glad that the conditions didnt get bad until I was the best part of the way here as by then it was too close to the goal to turn back




The Salawin



Burma on the other side, the Phantoms gone through all the water crossings okay but I think the Salawin might be just a tad too deep so I don't try




A quick look around the village, its 12.45 so its taken me 3.5 hours to get here, I dont stay long as I have no desire to ride back in the dark should something go wrong





It seems like all the animals are asleep here





Proof that I made it




On the way back and I find it harder as I am riding against a rather fast current and the water soon gets my boots filled up



Riding in the river bed isnt so great on the return and although I dont actually fall off, twice the bike got stuck and I had to get off and pull it out so I am well wet by now, at least the waters warm though.



Halfway home and thankfully the water sections are finished as I was getting concerned at how much punishment the bike was taking. Rocks were hitting against it a lot and I had visions of a split tyre, buckled rim or a hole in the casing, thankfully none of this happened and the only thing that needed doing was oiling the chain



If anyone is thinking of riding this fun route, three pieces of advice.
1 Dont do it on a road bike, I struggled badly today getting back and will only ever try it again on a dual purpose/motard bike. Davidfl did you ride this on the Africa Twin?
2 Have at least two people on the trip, again I struggled pulling the bike out from where it got stuck in the river and there is no help out here
3 Leave fairly early in the morning as it takes a reasonable time and then theres some spare time in case of any problems



Back in Mae Sariang and its the 99 Baht buffet tonight
 

KTMphil

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Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
Great report Colin- thanks so much for letting us post it. What you have done is amazing, from a touring point of view in Thailand, your knowledge is unmatchable, thank you.


I want to try and get a track of Colin's route.
 

BarryBBQ

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XR250
Colin, welcome to the board (kind of). Does this mean you're giving up your head-table seat at the Kafe? :D
 

Ally

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Good trip there Colin, shame you didn't have a gps back then but I am sure some of the riders here will follow that up and map the route & share it here ;)

On a Phantom too !! Wooo Whooo !!

Ally
 

Marco

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Khuang Nai
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2016 Honda CBR 500R
Ally said:
Good trip there Colin, shame you didn't have a gps back then but I am sure some of the riders here will follow that up and map the route & share it here ;)

On a Phantom too !! Wooo Whooo !!

Ally

HEY ALLY & Colin in here,, nice to see you Colin and Ally,,

Ally hows Dogs? everything ok? i had 2 Rotties and as Thai don't like they they poison then and they past away 1yr ago with in only 6mths old,, and i have machine gun now,,,called Rat Poison to next person who's gonna do that,,,maybe i should bet 2 shua Hua hua and then i will take same time 2-4 rotties,, so they can play with each others,,,,

COLIN

Where are you now?? havent heard form you long time and what part you are in now??
I'm very busy on my work so i can meet you when u are this part of thailand,so let me know,, and IF i have change,, i try to join you this time....
 

Lone Rider

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Yes, this area is a great area for exploring - very few people other than Colin and the local offroad riders go here but there are tons of tracks in this area waiting to be explored. I have put Colin's trip on Google Earth in purple and another trip Colin has done to Mae Sam Laep (in green). The ESRI Thailand GPS map shows a single width trail along the Salween River (in light blue) but I am not sure if the army will allow people to go along here.

South of the track to Mae Sam Laep there are numerous tracks and trails - will put these on some of the old military maps I have and post them here as soon as I have time.
SW of Mae Sariang.JPG
 

Midnitemapper

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VIENTIANE, laos
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Thanks for that great post.In years past, the road to Ban that ta fang was often washed out.
I have passed the route lonerider outlined along the Salawene river.
A great afternoon loop out of Mae Sarieng!, great memories.

There is plenty of fantastic offroad riding in this area. :)
 

KTMphil

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Will be interesting to see the routes on some military maps.


Sounds like an interesting new area for most of us.
 

Stokes70

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Jan 15, 2011
hey colin great to see some trips you're doing - you go to some interesting places


This area/road is now firmly on my provisional to do list come the dry season....
 

Lone Rider

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Have been fiddling around with my maps and tracks and waypoints I got from various sources and this is what I have come up with - the quality is not great as I had to do a few cut and paste operations to get it into 1 picture and had to save it in .jpg format to keep it at a reasonable size (although still far larger than the preferred 800 by 600 pixels).

Only one map sheet of the old maps has been used (there are in total some 900 sheets for the whole of Thailand) and this sheet covers the area west of Rd 105 and south of road 1194 from d 105 to Mae Sam Laep - roughly south of 18 degrees north and west of 98 degrees east.

4544-1 Part with tracks and waypoints.jpg
 

alexuk

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Jan 30, 2011
what's the area like in wet season? hard red clay? or something better?
is it just the river crossings that stop the riding?
Lone rider, if you have Irfanview its simple to convert to 800x600

Looks like we need to join up some of those tracks!
 

Lone Rider

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alexuk said:
what's the area like in wet season? hard red clay? or something better?
is it just the river crossings that stop the riding?
Lone rider, if you have Irfanview its simple to convert to 800x600
You will find very varying conditions on the ground - remember that the area is about 900 sq. km. and although the map shows quite a few villages, there are not many people around and you are basically on your own when problems occur. The quality of the tracks and trails vary widely with some being sandy/stony but you will also find lots of muddy and slippery areas . As the area is still "heavily forested" the trails will not dry up quickly so this is something you will have to take into account when heading up there. River crossings at the moment are not easy.

With regard to downsizing to 800x600 pixels that is easily done but you would not have been able to read anything on the map so I left it as a large sized picture.
 

Mark Rossi

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Jan 15, 2011
Slash, he is a nutter! who else would ride a phantom through those dirt trails, good on ya Collin amazing rides as always.
 

Erictheviking

Member
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Jan 11, 2011
Great report, very nice photos and to do that riding on a Phantom alone is quite a feat!! My hat comes off for you Colin!!

Would not mind adding myself to the list of bikers going to explore that area a bit more!! Can we get some provisional dates sorted out you think??

Eric
 

Captain_Slash

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BMW 310GS Honda Wave 125 Honda MSX 125
Thank you all for the kind comments, this was a trip that I did on 21st december 2009 and seeing this post on here yesterday (Post subject: River crossing and enduro in Mae Sa Riang) I thought this would fit in, sadly I never used a GPS in those days so no gpx file but I see that Auke has filled in my route, I am certain now that this route will be followed by some of you as to the best of my knowledge no one tried it after my initial report
 

bigntall

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Feb 1, 2011
Colin - great post! I remember when you did these tracks and like the others cannot beleive you did it on the Phantom. Hats off to you. i reckon there are'nt many paved roads left in Thailand that Colin hasn't ridden. Looks like Dual Sport like a KLX250 may be what you need Colin to keep uncovering new places for you.

When are you back over?
 

Captain_Slash

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bigntall said:
Colin - great post! I remember when you did these tracks and like the others cannot beleive you did it on the Phantom. Hats off to you. i reckon there are'nt many paved roads left in Thailand that Colin hasn't ridden. Looks like Dual Sport like a KLX250 may be what you need Colin to keep uncovering new places for you.

When are you back over?
Hi Justin

Assuming my leg has healed properly and there are no other problems I should be back around 1st november time.
The KLX 250 is top of my list at the moment and unless something better comes out in the next four months that is what I will buy
 

bigntall

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Feb 1, 2011
Here's hoping the leg heals according to plan then Slash and see you November time.

Where are you planning to explore when over this time?
 

Captain_Slash

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BMW 310GS Honda Wave 125 Honda MSX 125
Kanchanaburi got completely missed out last holiday so possibly a month will be spent there gpsing the whole area.
I have some unfinished business in Nan too, I found a lot of new tracks, some turned to dirt, I left loads of waypoints on my gps and I want to ride over the hills to join them up next trip.
Udon Thani also has some to finish that turned to rough.
Lots of places to ride like I do each year plus always finding new ones
 

Captain_Slash

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BMW 310GS Honda Wave 125 Honda MSX 125
Phil on this years trip to Nan I mapped a lot of roads that Auke has now put on his map and theres still more to come as there are others that I have rode in the past that are still not on maps yet
 

KTMphil

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Captain_Slash said:
Phil on this years trip to Nan I mapped a lot of roads that Auke has now put on his map and theres still more to come as there are others that I have rode in the past that are still not on maps yet
You with a gps that records tracks is a force to be re-conned with
 
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