Pai to Doi Tai Laeng Shan State Myanmar

bsacbob

Administrator
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
Day 1.

After a good nights sleep, it was a slow start to get underway for the 90km ride to the Myanmar border crossing into Shan State.


Nicely paved as we made our way onto the 1226.

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First stop was the popular noodle shop in Joba village, here kids doing what kids do.

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Nice place to hang out and have a coffee.

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Unusual hammock idea.

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Just outside the village the first of several checkpoints.

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Our guide Tong handed over all our paperwork for the army to check carefully they had us waiting for quite a while as the snapped pictures of each of us holding our permits.

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All good, in the end, they let us pass.

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Mules on the road side.

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Another checkpoint and the same picture taking routine.

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Off once more heading towards the small village of Ban Pang Kham.



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Smoke still spoiling what would have been great views.

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Almost at the border.

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Pretty views.

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Dropping down into the village.

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Once outside the village, the dirt begins.

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Not really a problem a few steeper sections but all through with no problems.

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Brian doing well on his CRF.

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Des close behind.

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All well compacted with the occasional reminder of the previous night's rain.

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Thai army camp in the background as we neared Tai Laeng.

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We waited as JB and the guide came up with our premits, this is the last Thai checkpoint.

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First glimpse of Tai Laeng.

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A quick detour up to the viewpoint and the Kings Statue and Tai Yai tiger.

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Panoramic views from here.

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Wan army camps in the distance.

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Approaching the Shan check point.

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Some last-minute security light repairs.

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Lot's of military buildings in camouflage.

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The main town area follows the ridgeline at some 1600 metres above sea level.

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Time to check out the local food.

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Some of the ladies serving in the food stalls near the parade ground.

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Tai Yai beer, very nice indeed.

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The food was actually very nice.

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Heading to the school now to hand over some clothing and other items donated.

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Nicely improvised.

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The headteacher receiving donations.

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To be continued.......
 

bsacbob

Administrator
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
After a quick look around the school, it was off to visit the parade ground and the museum.

Had to run down the street to grab a shot of this playful youngster

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The museum perched on the ridgeline.

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Imposing statue of the Shan hero General Moheng who is buried in the border town of Piang Luang on the Thai side.

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Soldiers taking a break as the prepared the parade area for tomorrow.

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The museum is small but very informative, the curator was anxious to explain the history of the area.

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First picture you see as you enter the museum, back then ruled by the sword.

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A very impressive display depicting the long history of the Shan people, i enjoyed visiting the place.

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Some idea of how big the Shan state is.

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Pictures in the opium museum here burning piles of the drug.

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Musicians practice for the evening concert.

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Kept seeing this Honda lookalike two-stroke, cleverly branded as a Honga !!

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Making our way down to the Hospital the elevation drops some 600 metres from the ridgeline.

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Pillbox a reminder of how dangerous this area can be.

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Then a visit to Hospital where they care for injured soldiers as well as civilians in pretty basic conditions.

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Good to see an active teaching program in place for medical students.

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Here we donated some food and cash for the Hospital

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Soldiers, mostley gunshot wounds being treated here.

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A short distance was the house we would be staying in, we had originally planned to stay in the school but there was no water available.

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Brian getting to grips with the local brew.

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The ever smiling guy on the left had lost his leg to a Myanmar landmine, the guy in the middle is a bodyguard for one of the high ranking officers.

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Food was surprisingly good, not so sure about the pigs ears and tail though.

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Our host now in his seventies but hard-drinking and smoking always smailing.

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The chef one of his many daughters.

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Another character, all ready for the fancy dress.

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A helping hand as i rigged up my tent.

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We rode back into to town for yet more food and beer and the power supply failed.

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Being the gentleman I am, here i'm reaching out to give the young lady a hand rig up some lights.

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The evening was a blast, full of stories hand gestures and beer what a day, in the morning the main parade.


To be continued ....
 

Sabian

Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Location
Saraburi
Bikes
Honda wave efi, Honda shadow ACE
Excellent mate, looking forward to joining the trip next year.
 

bsacbob

Administrator
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
Excellent mate, looking forward to joining the trip next year.
Peter, if you are interested PM me with numbers etc. The main Shan Army day is on the 7th of Feb a big event but its cold as hell.

It's a photographers dream.
 

bsacbob

Administrator
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
Day 2 Parade Day


Today was all about pictures so I took lots of them.

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Moonlight

New member
Joined
Apr 21, 2019
Location
Bangkok
Bikes
BMW G310GS
Amazing pictures Bob. Was this last February at the Shan Army day..?

Would love to do a trip to Myanmar but I understand you can only do this with a local guide.

If you have a good guide, I would be grateful if you can share his name contact details.

Many thanks,
Best & safe riding...

Louis
 

bsacbob

Administrator
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
Louis, this was what they call Shan resistance day, it was on the 22nd of May this year, the main day is as i mentioned the 7th Feb. I have a guide friend who is making this trip next year and will do all the permits etc, a number of people are showing interest it is indeed a unique event, as i mentioned to Peter PM me with your numbers etc and i will hook you up.
 

bsacbob

Administrator
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
A big storm went over on the last night, so we decided to stay put and not venture up to the parade ground where apparently a concert was ongoing as well as free food for everyone, meanwhile we sat in the company of the locals and finished of the last of the Tai Yai beer and Lao Kao whisky.

In the morning a drive to see the impressive new High School a good distance from the main town and close to Wah territory our guide was a little nervous of us being at risk.

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All around small villages and remote military installations ringed the town.

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Solar powered AIS mast on the summit of this mountain.

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Back to the relative safety of the township and the Shan temple.

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Food offering to the departed.

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Shan temples tend to be pretty basic affairs, this was no exception.

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Back to the homestay and bid my farewells, ingenious pumping system.

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He was a great host, hope to see him next time.

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Basic kitchen but some great food came out of there.

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Making my way out of the valley, some many buildings are in camo for the military.

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Small dug out's to shelter from Wah mortar attacks all around the town.

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Back on the ridgeline and the clouds hanging giving some good photo opportunities.

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The first Thai army checkpoint and another check of my paperwork.

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The short dirt trail was actually a lot easier on the way back, flattened out by the pickup traffic from the night before.

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Back into Ban Kang Kham and onto the pavement.

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Some stunning scenery.

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Main checkpoint in Jabo village.

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Small coffee shop with a view to die for.

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Back onto the 1095 and the excellent 124 Cafe and the best breakfast i have ever had.

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Wow, what a spread.

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From here it was to Pai and meet up with my buddies and the trip came to an end. What a great few days, images i will remember forever and such friendly people, our guide did and excellent job, already looking forward to next years main event on the 7th of February.
 

Shane

Member
Joined
May 25, 2019
Location
Chiang Mai
Bikes
Honda Africa Twin, Honda CRF250L
I'm definitely keen to check out Doi Tai Leng for one of the major festivals :)

I was there a few months ago. It's a really cool place and an epic ride. I took a turn off from the road somewhere after Jabbo and went cross county through some spectacular mountain terrain to get to Baan Pang Kham (i think). After checking out the King Naresuan momument I thought I would just chance my luck getting into Doi Tai Leng. As I approached the checkpoint, the guard just lifted the barrier without even talking to me. I was really surprised and contrary to my usual security checkpoint operating procedure, I actually told the guard I had no passport, visa, etc. and was he sure it was ok for me to enter. I didn't want to have any problems just in case he let me in by mistake. No issue, so I just rolled on in. I stayed for about 2 hours exploring around and every other checkpoint just raised the barrier for me with out me having to ask either. I was the only falang in the village, or army base to be more precise, and there was no issue at all.

After exploring almost every inch of the place and taking as many pictures as I wanted, I left via a different trail, in a south westerly direction, which turned out to be incredible. I cant find the exact route on either maps.me or google but it eventually popped out on the 5013.

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bsacbob

Administrator
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
Shane,
I too visited there some time ago no real issues, like all border points, rules change day by day.

Here are the trails you mentioned, the south westerly trail comes out on the 4015.

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