Mindat & the Tattoo Ladies

bsacbob

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 1, 2012
Location
Chiang Rai
Bikes
Honda CRM-AR 250, Honda CRF 250-L, Suzuki V Strom XT 650 Honda XR250 Baja BMW F650GS
Apologies for the delay in continuing my trip report but I am in lockdown in Vietnam but just discovered I had a few more days to share in the darker reaches of my travel HD, so I hope you enjoy.

Today's ride from Mindat via mount Victoria was relatively short, but perhaps some of the most scenic so far of the trip and a twitchers paradise.

Another chilly start but the road crews already busy at work.

1 - 1.jpg

We noticed that generally, it was the young girls who place the rocks very careful by graded size, obviously a hierarchy in place leaving the unskilled do the hauling.

1 - 2.jpg

Have a waypoint for this place I will add later, it served great food and cheap cold beer.

1 - 3.jpg

The main roadway through town almost deserted i guess most folks still nursing a sore head from the previous night's festivities.

1 - 4.jpg

Soon out of town and the broken rocky roads we had become used to.

1 - 5.jpg

Quickly the mountains unfolded before us as we wind our way down to the river below.

1 - 6.jpg

The ever present motorbike supermarket, this chap pretty well loaded.

1 - 7.jpg


1 - 8.jpg

Nick wasted no time reading him in on our mighty 125's :sneaky:

1 - 9.jpg


1 - 10.jpg

Nice new concrete bridge in place.

1 - 11.jpg

The older one, well its gone.

1 - 12.jpg


1 - 13.jpg


1 - 14.jpg

Sure signs roadworks ahead and possibly delays.

1 - 15.jpg

I doubled back to get a shot of this lady, who was clearly not well impressed by the attention.

1 - 16.jpg

This young fella had that look in his eyes, whoop me or not.

1 - 17.jpg


1 - 18.jpg

As I mentioned it was a relatively short ride to our next destination and was looking for a diversion to make the ride more interesting, I spotted a single track turn off, that would do nicely.

1 - 19.jpg


1 - 20.jpg

Amazing how much the Japanese contribute to projects all over SE Asia and may they continue to do so.

1 - 21.jpg

He was a little startled to see us as we rode by, on the return he a little happier.

1 - 22.jpg

1 - 23.jpg


1 - 24.jpg


1 - 25.jpg

The trail zig-zagged down the valley to who knows where.

1 - 26.jpg


1 - 27.jpg


1 - 28.jpg

It was getting pretty steep as we headed towards the river below, coming back up on the fully loaded bikes would be interesting.

1 - 29.jpg

We came upon this impressive small swing bridge, what an effort to get materials this far to construct it.

1 - 30.jpg


1 - 31.jpg


1 - 32.jpg

As all river do, it makes a good laundry point.

1 - 33.jpg


1 - 34.jpg

We came upon this very small village, people looked friendly enough.

1 - 35.jpg


1 - 36.jpg


1 - 37.jpg

Local lady preparing root vegetable to dry in the sun.

1 - 38.jpg

After a few minutes the locals slowly emerged, these guys interested in Nicks electric cigarette.

1 - 39.jpg

After lots of hand gestures and pointing a challenged was issued one of them cut a mark in a nearby tree and I was asked to try my hand shooting the single shot hand made musket.

1 - 40.jpg

I was just off the mark by an inch, boy that thing had a kick lead fragments cutting my face in the backfire.

1 - 41.jpg



1 - 42.jpg

All the ladies here sporting the Chin tattoos on their faces, each minority has a different style to the other so you can tell where they come from by the tattoo style.

1 - 43.jpg

We would see many of these stone structures here, we are not sure of the purpose, some kind of burial site? Google can help maybe in my search.

1 - 44.jpg


1 - 45.jpg

This group of youngsters tearing it up down the slopes, rather them than me, it was steep as hell down there.

1 - 46.jpg

Yet more of these stone groupings.

1 - 47.jpg

Many of the houses had animal bones adorning them I assume they follow some kind of Zoolatry religion.


1 - 48.jpg


1 - 49.jpg

This old lady came out shaking a handful of what looked like animal bones at me, I hope it was for good luck!

1 - 50.jpg

Notice the leopard type tattoo spots on her neck, all the ladies here had the same.

1 - 51.jpg


1 - 52.jpg

Well at least they are not human skulls.

1 - 53.jpg


1 - 54.jpg

They had a very small school so clearly some funding of some kind is given to these people even in the harshest of conditions.

1 - 56.jpg



1 - 57.jpg

Knife at the ready

1 - 58.jpg

Pretty hard to get pictures of people here, all very scared of us.

1 - 59.jpg


1 - 60.jpg

1 - 61.jpg


1 - 62.jpg

The village stretched out further along the mountainside but we decided to turn back rather than outreach ourselves.

1 - 63.jpg


1 - 65.jpg

These guys absolutely slaughtered of the local hooch.

1 - 66.jpg


1 - 67.jpg


1 - 68.jpg


1 - 69.jpg

On the way out we stopped and unloaded some packs of sultanas and snacks we had for the grateful kids, but not until we tasted them first.

1 - 70.jpg

What a natural beauty.

1 - 71.jpg

I imagine the young kids surrounding them are theirs

1 - 72.jpg

Think they enjoyed the snacks.

1 - 73.jpg


1 - 74.jpg


1 - 75.jpg

Back to the roadway.

1 - 76.jpg

Flimsy homes perched on the roadside, even these had animal skulls on display.

1 - 77.jpg


1 - 78.jpg

This according to the GPS was a GH, think we will move on.

1 - 79.jpg

1 - 80.jpg

As we approached Mount Victoria area, the forest was amazing, totally untouched. Turn out it was a huge draw for bird watchers as we passed several buses full of twitchers.

1 - 81.jpg


1 - 82.jpg


1 - 83.jpg


1 - 84.jpg

1 - 85.jpg


1 - 86.jpg

Lots of grading work being done through the forest area and the turn for Mount Victoria peak, hoards of tourists massed around the turn so we gave it a miss.

1 - 87.jpg


1 - 88.jpg

Pretty high elevation at this point, it must be incredibly cold for these workers in the evenings

1 - 89.jpg


1 - 90.jpg

As we neared Kanpetlet this old house with a chimney, clearly some English influence.

1 - 91.jpg

Kanpetlet turned out to be a strange place, where the well-healed people from nearby big cities come to enjoy the coolness of the mountains and with that come high prices, many of the places we stopped wanted $100 or more night.

1 - 92.jpg

A local guy eventually guided us to this GH where we got two bungalows for $50 each.

1 - 93.jpg


1 - 94.jpg


1 - 95.jpg

At least we had nice views.

Location N21° 11.531' E94° 03.916'

1 - 96.jpg


1 - 97.jpg


1 - 98.jpg

Slated floor acted as the drainage, very ingenious.

1 - 99.jpg

Kanpetlet a sleepy place not much going on in the town, definitely not a place if you enjoy and beer or two as we found out.

1 - 100.jpg


1 - 101.jpg


1 - 102.jpg


1 - 103.jpg


1 - 104.jpg

Dagon Jeeps a nice copy of the American Jeep.

1 - 105.jpg

I can imagine in high season this is full of well do travellers remarking on the quaintness of the place.

1 - 106.jpg


1 - 107.jpg


1 - 108.jpg



1 - 109.jpg


1 - 110.jpg


1 - 111.jpg

The Gh was a big place and full many of the rooms for Burmese people only.

1 - 112.jpg

Early evening brought out the locals for exercise.

1 - 113.jpg


1 - 114.jpg

1 - 115.jpg

The main town a stark contrast to the expensive hotels up the hill.

1 - 116.jpg

2WD trike with suitably beefed up suspension.

1 - 117.jpg

It was nice to see signs of Buddism after the days amongst the Baptists.

1 - 118.jpg

1 - 119.jpg


1 - 120.jpg

We found a restaurant serving traditional Chin food and more importantly cold beers. Below interesting footing arrangement laid in a similar way to the road crews.

1 - 121.jpg

Actually the food here was pretty good since it was the only place we could find selling food.

1 - 122.jpg


1 - 123.jpg

Suitably fed and watered it was back to the GH for an early night, in the morning we would consider plans to visit the magnificent town of Bagan.

1 - 124.jpg
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
bsacbob Myanmar Ride Reports 2
Similar threads
Mutapi To Mindat
Top Bottom