Myanmar Motorcycle Tour Photos

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
Just to keep things interesting and alive over here, I thought I'd post up some pix and locations of some of our latest tours. Hope you all enjoy the pix!



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Take in the view from a high mountain track in the Shan Mountians...

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Pa O hill tribe guys having the SE Asian grogg.....Rice whiskey...and Cheroots

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Future pilot


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Red clay farms dot the mountians all thru the Shan MOuntains

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ALong the road from Thazi to Kalaw....Burmese women have the habit of carrying everything on their heads. Everything.


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She kinda lookslike that dancing girl from the old TV commercials from SOuth America..Chiqita Bannana? Did I say everything?



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Nice example old Bizza

Gold Star I think...


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U Thein Bridge, Oldest Teak Bridge in the world.....Mandalay



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Entrance to Inle from the Road Side....



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Old dirt track leading to a prison along the way to Thazi.


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Leaving Mandalay....

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I dont know if fish pay full fare
 

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Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
hmmm...dunno how I did that....oh well...the golf course above is in the hills above Kalaw, Old British Hill Station....this is a private course on an Army Base with a Generals College on site...Just like all bases, it has it's own everything from nihgt club, to 18 hole immacualte courses, restaurants, pubs, PX's and of course housing....It's a truly surreal place in light of everything,esp how they are living just down the hill in town....More of those pix to follow.....
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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School's out in Pinlong

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Views like this are around almost every corner, some greener than others!!


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New road construction is everywhere, and these are hill tribe migrant worker camps...That is their "flag" on the edge of the creek

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The kitchen on the train...bring your own, best idea.

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Enuff said...Rich Man Swimming Pools..."Symbol of the Rich Man"...ummm, yeah.

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Knowing MYN, there is no one staffing the Complaint Desk, as there are never any complaints in MYN. Prolly a holdover from Colonial Days, now "kitsch" to the Burmese :eek1



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One of their proudest recent feats, and should be...an amazing span bridge built with Chinese engineers over 5 years and a couple million USD...it spans a huge deep gully and connects 2 previously un passable areas, but for days of trekking...All thru hill tribe lands, employing them along the way. Trickle down, no? The road terminates somewhat near to the new Capitol, Ny Pi Taw



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Schwe Dagon in Yangon...no bikes here...



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Local kat producer, he expertly rolls beetle and other spices in a lime paste spread on a pandus leave for chewing and dying the teeth an attractive red for life...mmmmm...
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Riverside traders on the Ayyerwaddy

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Fishmongers sort, sell, and ship fish day after day with no time to relax
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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This is the insanely huge, deserted, perfectly graded and prepared, and lit like a runway road into the new Capitol, Ny Pi Taw...It isn't enough to behold it in all its oppulance in the day time...A night trip out is a must, as goes for the whole city...SImply like a Lewis Carrol tale, a perfect master planned, BRIGHT city, with no one. No fuel stations allowed within 50 miles, except one Gov run one in town, open til 6PM....the trek in is a hell of a long way thru nowhere, with NO service stations, and running out of fuel is frequent...One tour, I pushed 2 riders more than 20 KM, before running out myself..I bought some black market gas by flagging down a scooter and giving him money and sending him away. Luckily, from past experience , I knew this was ok, and the Burmese are too honest, so it was no worry ...And in 15 minutes he came back with 2 water bottles full...I think they too had seen this before..ANd went back and pick up each rider, with my foot, driving more than 100 miles total pushing everyone with a stiff leg on their rear pegs....Whew.......



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One guest had one request..."SHow me a snake in the wild." Knowing this capitol of excess attracted more than just politcal snakes, I promised, having seen plenty on this warm, sun baked road at night...Again, 16 lanes wide, no traffic...perfect for snakes....Well, we got one...and we joked as we drove back to the resort, hahaha wouldn't that be funny if it was a deadly snake"?


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MInd you , it seemed pissed the hell off and really REALLY agressive...turns out, it's a Russell's Viper, on of the dealiest in the world, killing more people in Myanmar than Cobras. %70 of snake deaths are Russells Vipers....Ohhh hell.....


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I'll post the videos later...this thing climbs in our motors, in our bikes, we scream like ladies, and dance around like f'ing idiots, all the while a car or 2 rolls by real slow to see WTF is wrong with us....Idgets of the truest sense....

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But hey, she was a real beauty, and after an hour of trying to die in a Youtube video, we shooed her off into the marshes the city is built on...with the other vermin...
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
This is the insanely huge, deserted, perfectly graded and prepared, and lit like a runway road into the new Capitol, Ny Pi Taw...It isn't enough to behold it in all its oppulance in the day time...A night trip out is a must, as goes for the whole city...SImply like a Lewis Carrol tale, a perfect master planned, BRIGHT city, with no one. No fuel stations allowed within 50 miles, except one Gov run one in town, open til 6PM....the trek in is a hell of a long way thru nowhere, with NO service stations, and running out of fuel is frequent...One tour, I pushed 2 riders more than 20 KM, before running out myself..I bought some black market gas by flagging down a scooter and giving him money and sending him away. Luckily, from past experience , I knew this was ok, and the Burmese are too honest, so it was no worry ...And in 15 minutes he came back with 2 water bottles full...I think they too had seen this before..ANd went back and pick up each rider, with my foot, driving more than 100 miles total pushing everyone with a stiff leg on their rear pegs....Whew.......

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One guest had one request..."SHow me a snake in the wild." Knowing this capitol of excess attracted more than just politcal snakes, I promised, having seen plenty on this warm, sun baked road at night...Again, 16 lanes wide, no traffic...perfect for snakes....Well, we got one...and we joked as we drove back to the resort, hahaha wouldn't that be funny if it was a deadly snake"?

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Mind you , it seemed pissed the hell off and really REALLY agressive...turns out, it's a Russell's Viper, on of the dealiest in the world, killing more people in Myanmar than Cobras. %70 of snake deaths are Russells Vipers....Ohhh hell.....


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I'll post the videos later...this thing climbs in our motors, in our bikes, we scream like ladies, and dance around like f'ing idiots, all the while a car or 2 rolls by real slow to see WTF is wrong with us....Idgets of the truest sense....

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But hey, she was a real beauty, and after an hour of trying to die in a Youtube video, we shooed her off into the marshes the city is built on...with the other vermin...

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Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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The home of Myanmar Motorcycle Adventures



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Kyasuake University, largest Uni in Mandalay


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And the polar opposite...we visit a remote, rural orphanage for Pa O kids that show promise....They arrive from distant mountain villages with nothing but the requirement of good scores, rice for the term, plus their own firewood and school supplies.



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These students are very shy and even remote, but every one is surprised to see they study calculus, trig, advanced sciences, things you would never, ever see in schools for kids this age here in Laos, even Thailand....English is strained, but spoken too...Not too many oppurtunities to practice....




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So to continue our tradition of helping the people who need it most, M A R has adopted this orphanage with our own program that will see each rider's participation directly pay for one years wood, rice, and clothing for a school year...This small gesture will allow access for new faces of all age and further their chances at a better life for their people.



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There are about 25 students in the 8-13 year old section, and about the same for the teenagers...they all live in tiered, BUrmese style bunkbeds, 8 to a room..It is a hard life, but one with possibility for success for the first time in their lives.....It's a beautiful thing....ANyone wishing to contribute warm clothing of ANY kind, esp for small kids, please contact via email or PM and we will present it to them in the very near future on your behalf.


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Burmese version of Mod-ster Energy drink....Extreme sahib!! I think I heard it prevents foot and mouth, too...or Avian FLu.....either way, it'll prolly kill stuff in ya...
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Table for dinner in about the most incredible setting of all...that's in the shadow of 12th Century stupas...Food's good, too!



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View of Old Bagan



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Again, riding out thru the temples and stupas




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Bagan


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Beautiful sun burst over Ancient Bagan




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Nice greens here, rare for Bagan...It is one of the hottest towns in MYN




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Novice monks pose for a nice shot in their crimson robes




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ANother side





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Hindu era temple in Bagan







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The Buddha receives enlightenment





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And THIS!!! :WTF

No idea what it says, but it scares me...This is a common sign only in Magwe District....Too odd.......
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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This is a river side Karoake joint for Tattmadaw Generals in the Air Force....on the Irrawaddy River in Magwe, home to loyalist forces from long ago...If you ;re lucky, you'll get buzzed by several MIGS or F-16s while you're there....Pretty common to burn a few Million every day from what I've seen....I'll let you imagine the things on offer for sale after a few bottles of cheap Burmese Whiskey...




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Bridge over the Irrawaddy in Magwe, longest Toll Bridge in SE Asia...I slpet in the booth one night long long ago....pix to follow...that's a funny story about BUrmese hotel laws and the kindness of strangers.....




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A new Defender in the parking lot of the GH in Magwe, the 1 of 2 hotels period...this was a big timer in the serivces....You are Uber connected for a car like this...




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Well, as we came to the shittiest parts of a new road being cut thru the mountains and the looming clouds, we saw a guy doing this.....We feared we may be a bit under-prepared, no chains and all...While it was occasionally cold, never thought about mini-snow chains.....turns out,for the mud...and you'll see, it's about to f'ing rain!







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This is what we had to ride in to....with 12% grades, new roads, all slick mud.......for 7 hours....in the rain.....we needed chains ;)





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Locals stop to stare thru the bushes but not dare get too close sometimes





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This family I met years ago and kinda saved me in a remote area from hunger and sure starvation....not that bad, but they filled me up and sent me on my way, without tkaing a cent.....or Kyat...and took a photo with me, which they asked me to bring back as a big copy.....I had the biggest vinyl banner printed up and took this to them for me n Dave....they were so stoked....and agian, filled with everything they had...fresh raw tomoatoe, fish, fried thingeys, my fav, tofu puffs.....everything we could stuff...and sent us on the way again, for free.....she asked for skin sunscreen, and the next time the scene repeated....now we have seen each other so many times, it's becoming lilke family!! And in such an unlikely place! They are amazing people, the Burmese...



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SOme of the meal.....



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UFO?



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Headless Buddhas of Kakku


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Spires and Pagodas of the famous and off limits, Kakkuu..




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These Hill Tribe ladies were sure we did not exist and were ghosts..."Just keep walking....."





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And another way to Inley Lake, 2 days ride thru the mountains on trails and on to a boat....the opposite far end....





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Amazing blue Inley Lake



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Inley Life



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Indien ruins, C,12th-16 Century



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Indien




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Modern and ancient....DT or temple?



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COming down the mountain......



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High gorge dumps water 100s of Meters over the edge...natural shower....
 

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Lone Rider

Blokes Who Can
Joined
Jan 29, 2011
Location
Chiangmai
Bikes
4 Wheels
Just magic and I am afraid you got me hooked. My next major trip will have to be to Bagan - not on a bike though but looking at all those temples over there I guess I will spend quite some time there. Big thanks for posting this stuff.
 

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
Eric - This is up there with one of the best trip reports ive ever seen on the internet as its new territory to everyone, really admire what you've achieved here, you're a pioneer! ...........Congratulations.:DD
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
Beer HUH??? Dude...you got lot's of choices....there's MYanmar Beer, Myanmar Beer, and another, ummm, I think its spelled Myanmar Beer...hahaha...No, there are also Dagon Beer ( The old name of Yangoon), and Mandalay Beer.....Notice a theme here? And funnily enough, each region is VERY loyal to their suds....And they each have a super strong, 7-9% beer, infused with what tastes like formaldahyde, and makes you feel like your insides are being pickled the next day. DOn't even ask about the blinding headache..oooowwwww......About $1 a bottle....thx guys for the kind words....next round, colorful people that'll blow you away!
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Beautiful Pa-O hill tribe lady and her parasol and son....To say "dumbfounded" is an understatement when they see us....Zero contact with farang, none, ever. And too see a moto on their trails....Holy shit, Batman....Here come's the neighborhood!!! BUt they are delighted to meet us always....




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It looks like a city, but it's a large village in Shan State, no power, rural living at it's finest.




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Young novices happy to pose




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These are hill tribe farm girls....all they said was "I love you" and asked for our water...they had NOTHING, in the middle of the hot sun, working in lines, hoeing by hand the hard clay and red dirt....damn....you really wanted to cry, they were so sweet and innocent...And money would have been worthless, nothing to do with it but wipe your arse...So water is the prefered item of gifting...Needless to say, we gave all we could.....




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The work line........




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Taking a break....no, not a staged photo, this is high in a remote mountain village where they live like medevil times.....





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THIS gets insane....a wedding....we were the uninvited guests of honour....No one had ever met farang, a few had seen a big bike in the city, but most had no idea what they were....these people are REMOTE.....and it get's better....




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The happy couple...NOT.....The grooms family had stolen her a few weeks ago, from a village about 4 hours trek away. He was an ugly mug, his family wanted a nice wife for him....So they kidnapped her to their village, "broke" her for 2 weeks, and love is formed...She was miserable...and that's understating it...she cried....she ran..she would not touch him.....her parents, who had been paid by now, bitched at her non stop..."Look happy, hold his hand" blah blah...toooooo weird.....




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Her new white devil son in law




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Mom and Daughter




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The new (un)happy couple...well, he was stoked........




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Parting shot for all.......




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Local monkey in the village ;)


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Beautiful rest stop over a mountain pass.....




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Mom, son, and baby in a basket...hehehhehe lucky kid!




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Survey the view, drink it in...never, ever gets old.......




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Where's my pot of gold..? Hell, where's THEIR pot of gold....GD lying Irish bastards....



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Smelling my own fart :kat






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Local kids in a small village




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My first "wife" in MYN...her village is down some remote tracks in a never traveled area....everyones reply " HOW THE HELL DID YOU FIND THIS PLACE??!!" 3 years ago when I met them, they were speechless....and afraid...So she brought me a glass of fresh strawberries in milk with ice, as a peace offering.....the rest is history, and I've taken groups back to spend some Kyat with them every tour....lovely lovely people, always so happy to see us...she is waiting for me to take her away one day, I think....




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Fully loaded DT



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Hey baby!!!!



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Sedona hotel, ready for lift off, Mandalay




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Hey, don't point those things at me!!!




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Rather than have our feet amputated, we opted to stay outside and look thru the windows etc....we were gonna need those feet for shifting and braking later.....savages.
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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This is one of my favorite anecdotes....after a 2 week ride out solo, no guests, I was a few hours from Mandalay....I stopped off on a farm to look around and meet some people down a long dirt track....and lo and behold, there were shrooms growing everywhere...In the turds...well, we know what that means....It has been decades since I had eaten psycadelics and I thought what better oppurtunity and place to do so in this already insane enviroment.....I would be in Mandalay in a few hours....The local guys begged me not to eat them, pointing at their heads, trying to explain what these were...Oh, I knew all right.....so I picked em all, gave a few Kyat, and was on my way....As the sun set, and an hour to go to MAN, I ate about 4-5 caps "just to see".....And what did I see....this billboard on the HWY, about 20 min before MAN....And I was JUST starting to get off pretty good....A GD billboard, full of mushroom pix, saying some shit in BUrmese, and it didn't look good. At all....I translated it as, " DONT EAT THESE YOU"LL DIE" or something.....well, hell I was off like a rocket, afraid of what was next....and I don't meaning driving fast, rather I WAS off like a rocket...now I had to arrive to MAN in the dark, head full of Psilocybin, navigating traffic, to get to my buddy and show him the picture and asking him " WTF does it SAY, man, what does it say??!!!?"

"Turn trash in to cash, compost your garbage, and make/grow mushrooms for extra money"

Ohhhh......Ok, then......I laughed for about 2.5 hours, to their amusement.....good stuff, BTW, pretty strong, nice visuals, and no puking....The Moat was so surreal, I walked it pretty much all night...hehehheheheee
 

jb2112

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2012
Bikes
N/A
Great report Eric. Next stop Burma for me.

Someone needs to translate that motorbike "death" sign.
 

zachb

Junior Member
Joined
May 11, 2012
Location
Mandalay Myanmar
Bikes
Jialing 150, New Anbo 125, Honda Supercub
Cool Photos!
tall cans of Beer Lao are available in the grocery stores along with Heineken and Budweiser. Yes, Stay away from the 8%+ beers. they use some sort of strong cheap alcohol to mix with the beer to get the % that high.
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
And it should be noted, that in those same grocery stores, very high end single malts, etc.. are about %50 less than in duty free...It's weird, but a 12 year Glenlivet is about 15-20$ max....Waaaaay cheaper than duty free...
 

Captain_Slash

Community Manager
Joined
Jun 28, 2011
Bikes
BMW 310GS Honda Wave 125 Honda MSX 125
A great report Eric, how easy/difficult is it getting into Burma and being allowed to tour around on motorbikes?
 

zachb

Junior Member
Joined
May 11, 2012
Location
Mandalay Myanmar
Bikes
Jialing 150, New Anbo 125, Honda Supercub
Easy to rent a bike in Mandalay, ngapali, and Pyin Oo Lwin and tour around but most of the bikes are just 125cc underbones.

the biggest problem is trying to figure out which roads are off limits or not. Yangon is off limits and a few people have been sent back from Inle's nyaungshwe recently.

here is a good map of where you can and can't go but it is a little pout of date.
tools4fools - overview travel map for Myanmar: a road map for Burma
I'm pretty sure the roads up near Myitkyina are all closed except for the city itself because of the war that is going on there. Also the roads into Ngapali were closed to foreigners during the riots in SIttwe and Myauk U and I'm not sure if they are open now.
 

KTMphil

Senior member
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Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
zach - do you have any contact details of the bike rental shops in Mandalay? location, what bikes they have, prices etc......? even photos of the shops would be useful



.

Easy to rent a bike in Mandalay, ngapali, and Pyin Oo Lwin and tour around but most of the bikes are just 125cc underbones.

the biggest problem is trying to figure out which roads are off limits or not. Yangon is off limits and a few people have been sent back from Inle's nyaungshwe recently.

here is a good map of where you can and can't go but it is a little pout of date.
tools4fools - overview travel map for Myanmar: a road map for Burma
I'm pretty sure the roads up near Myitkyina are all closed except for the city itself because of the war that is going on there. Also the roads into Ngapali were closed to foreigners during the riots in SIttwe and Myauk U and I'm not sure if they are open now.
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Stop off for fresh strawberries and milk and a nice gawk session



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Local tea shop



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Not sure, but I think they were coffee beans drying in the sun



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Bath time...don't forget behind the ears.



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Jason and his trusty mount




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Rough translation " Road in progress, all ye who dare enter are on their own "




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Support truck and bikes on the road to Kalaw



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Circus of bikes stops for drinks and whatever you got to eat....Justin Beiber pickled fruit is all the rage...



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These dough guys were all over the road...???!?!!!

Oh NO Mr.Bill!!!!!!!

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Some kind of spirit thing, I guess...



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The most basic of places along the way....1 of 2, this one being the better...And they are the "gov" ones...


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Nicer "private" owned hotel...



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Cutting thru the mountains on track never travelled by motorbikes...before we came along.



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"Hey, you think these guys are looking for us??!?"

" Shit, I HOPE not....I think they are just noisy ghosts anyway.'




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COOL OFF IN THE SHADE



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And in every ride, there's always a chance for something to go wrong....Unfortunately, this was a broken clavicle....Ross was such a trooper he was ready to ride in 3 days. Everyone wants to know about the medical care in MYN.

Here is Ross's story. After walking about half an hour or so, he was at a larger dirt track that had these cool Burmese style tractors plying the way.


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So this thing drove him down to a main road, where our partner's wife came and met Ross. From there he took a minion with her to the Military Hospitol, it being th best and nearest. They did see him and treated him beyond the immediate triage we had done, but told him soon after, he had to go, he was a civilian. BUmmer....so they went on down the road to the provincial capitol to a private hospital, where as Ross would put it, the care would make Oz blush....he was very well taken care of, constantly looked after, and Thun Tee's wife slept in the room with him the full 3 days he had to stay. She was a great help and comfort. And if you got the cash, the care over there isn't half bad it sounds. ROss joined us 3 days later, eager to ride, but he was vetoed on that by his mates, and trailed along with us all in the truck with our spitting driver. A real trip in itself!!
 

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Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
hahha..auto correct....Ross did NOT take a minion, he took a MINIVAN.....
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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One of the many "wadis" along the roads in some rural areas...After heavy rain, the water just washes the road away and follows the path of least resistance, opening up wide channels of raging flash flood along the way...




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Here you can see the deep canyons caused by previous flash flood erosion



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These aqua blue-turquose iguanas hang from trees everywhere in Magwe district...The roads look like old country lanes with trees forming a canopy over the shaded roads...and these guys are everywhere, falling out of trees on to the road, or being hunted by the local kids with slingshots....they were ESP hard to photo, because instinct taught them, anything paying attention to you, is gonna shoot you, and they didn't know what a camera was.



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A long new bridge across a dry river bed....in a few months, it'll rage with water from run off in monsoon


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The fanciest, only "western" type joint in all Magwe...this guy is waaay ahead of the curve with fru fru coffe drinks and an on site bakery making incredible cakes and pies, tarts, cookies, you name. All baked in a full windowed kitchen right in front. He was open 2 months ago then, and going strong still. Stop in to Sky COffee Shop and say hi while enjoying some great coffee and excellent fried shrimp, fish n chips, or even cheeseburger.

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Thun Oo, proud owner, Valentines 2010



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Did I mention they carry EVERYTHING on their heads?



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Stopped to take a nap under the only tree in a field....and this dude was hanging in the tree....I guess a sign to the other snakes coming around...



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Yep, that's right...Justin Beiber loves pickled mangoes and what are prolly cherrys n salt....His favorite snack in Burma...when playing guitar...For those not in the know, this kid has been the hottest thing in kiddy music in the last 5 years or so...and he def does not play any instruments....



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"Ok, this is our serious novice face. Got it?"



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"You put HOW much in there...Oh my Buddha!"


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"Wow...ghosts really are Pi Ba!!!!"

Monks, people, kids, all sorts of people stand along deserted stretches of hiways and roads asking for money for different reasons...some for temple, some for school, some for road repair, other villages sweep entire roads free of dust and ask for your money as you drive thru leaving, hoping you toss a few notes...seriously...WTF else is there to do?


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The "new" Schwe Dagon Pagoda in capitol city Ny Pi Taw, at night....


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As I said, Ny Pi Taw is infested with all manner of snakes.



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One of many checkpoints along the roads....one of these guys is actually a General, ahem....what that means, who knows...after exchanging the necessary permits and travels passes, the obligatory cup of tea, and lots of promises for whiskey drinking in future (which we actually did after future meetings) and an invite to the Army base in the gorge below, where I was assured the most beautiful, and I assume tired and busy, women in Myanmar were waiting, I was allowed to drive across the stunning Lin Li Bridge. I should have stayed; I was in for a freezing drive, into no where, with no road, no gas, and no idea I was 8 hours from my destination...at 5pm.... As I had what I needed, they were more than friendly and polite, but very very confused about just what to do with what info...since I was really a ghost anyway....No, JK, the fact that I was an unaccompanied farang was confusing. As it always was the first time around.


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They were the guardians to this bridge and that is the Army base in the upper left corner, along the gorge....
 

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Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Old ladies come down from the mountains to sell the few things they have grown to pilgrims visiting the holy site of Kakku, off limits to most farang and by permit/guide only, and a very long 8 hour and paved car ride along one of the typical crumbling roads.


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Tha amzing Kakku....like pieces on a chessboard, the stupas are arranged like a labyrinth...


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ANother view

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From the gardens outside...all the stupas are mostly white and similar in size, but each one is "sponsored" by someone in the world and a plaque with their name and locale on it says so..And I mean ALL over the world....so it is always growing.....and has been for 100s of years....


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From afar

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Like I said, a few outsiders visit Kakku, but why even bother going over those hells roads...when you can have this...our route...


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Stunning single tracks
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Remote valleys, NO traffic, a cow or 2....

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And these are the children and family of the old woman who came 4 hours from here to sell the garlics at Kakku.....yes, it's a garlic farm and the air smells magic!


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Finally, someone was willing to talk with us...these people were SCARED! No mopeds, no nothing with an engine had been thru these tracks, so there was a lot of concern as to WTH we wanted and why were there.....


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And on to Inle Lake......

If you make it to Kakku, there are no tourist things to buy, no hand crafts...just Shan noodle, dried tea laves, fresh dried chilis, fresh hulled garlic, and peanuts....Buy some of all and give it away later...that 500 kyat (.50) you spend will get you a HUGE tin cup or 2 of whatever...they really really need the $$$ and they are so grateful and stunned to see the white ghosts.
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
THX again for the kind words..glad you enjoyed the pix....when you start to warn MM he'ss got competition, I'll be impressed!!!! still got a lot to go....I will add text in a bit...on the bus now to visit a friend, so burning time as i got about 12 hours to go...Enjoy!!
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Boys out for a night hunting..their "village" has no power. Battery power



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"Super Fly Leopard" And you may have thought Def Leppard was a cool name for a band....I got dibs on this one...

Spare parts manufacture.



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Beautiful gorge in a quarry



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Water rushing out of the quarry in to the village below, making for nice cool showers





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Panarama shot of the gorge



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One of the local hill tribe guys, fooling around for the camera


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Very good to drive in....in the dry season!!! You can imagine what happens in a fe wmonths




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This is an ancient teak monastery, almost 200 years old, the center piece of the "powerless" village. We sleep in here, with a 90 year old, deaf and blind monk that was born in this village. He has 4 novices that do the "dirty work" for him, cutting wood, clueing up, cooking food. At night, the whole alter is lit with battery powered LEDs and we sleep in a group together, on the floor, in a giant pallet of quilts...It is COLD...Not many folks have opted for the morning shower....it's an amazing experience.



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Outside garage parking..No attendent here!


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What a handsome family



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Another hill tribe man of the area



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Those iconic wooden bullock carts are everywhere..no steel here!



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Hill tribe hostess...."Tea and dried beans?"



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"SO where does this go?"



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An old stone bridge...like so many things here, it makes Laos positively advanced.

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Hill tribe lady is tending her fields of tea


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Rest stop



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NIce pan shot of the area




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Looking out of the valley into the plains....on to something new!
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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A woman selling bunches of fresh flowers for riders on the train


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Said "riders"



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A rural feed trough...they don't realize just how lucky they are to not be like their Lao neighbors....we've all seen their troughs.



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Old bamboo stand...I don't know why, but they have the biggest, thickest bamboo I've ever seen



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A boy with his seed-shooter gun.....


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Nice rural village of hill tribe people



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Lady looking out across her land



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Pa O woman serves up the tea



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View from inside



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The fearless guide Rog....well, at first he was pretty scared....he hadn't ever done anything like this before, so it was really new for us both the first time. Normally, these are trekking paths. He was proud to be driving around on his moto, freshly shoe-d with MX-BMX tires...we were the whisper of the hills.




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NIce panoramic view of the countryside



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Nice mountain cottage
 

Lao2stroker

Senior Member
Joined
May 25, 2011
Bikes
I have too many bikes....
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Nice place for a picnic

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We picked up these 2 monks as "hitchhikers", each of taking one....Everytime my DT bottomed out, I felt even worse for the HOnda Dream copy from China...ouch! But he was going much much slower...



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A typical Shan farm, tea and bricks drying in the sun
 
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