Ride Report - up the 1322 to Pai

The Bigfella

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KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
I've proposed a Ulysses Club ride for Monday / Tuesday. Speak up if you are interested. Visitors are welcome. It's essentially a ride to Pai (and up towards the border as a side trip), scooting around the northern side of Chiang Dao on the 1322.

We're calling it a dirt ride (Lachie, Deere and myself have decided on CRFs for the ride). It's 230km on the first day and either 130 or 199 the second day, depending if we tootle down the front or back roads. We could, if the older farts among us (and I include myself in that) come downhill on some dirt as well.

We're running this as a conditions check to see how our cruiser / 500X / Versys riding members would do over the same roads for a future ride.

Who's interested? Would Thursday / Friday be better? Do the road riders want to make it a pincer ride - going up and getting the beers lined up for our later arrival?

Speak up (shouldn't that be write up) if you are interested. I've attached a GPX track of day 1.

GPX viewer
 

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The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
It was stands up and four bikes with 5 people headed up the Ping / canal escape route to the north, joining the 107 at the 1095 (Pai Rd) intersection. We had Eddie and Joy on the 500X, Lachie and I on CRF 250s and Deere on a DRZ400, slightly hobbled with a balding 50/50 rear tyre.

Further north, Chiang Dao was showing signs of moisture

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But nothing to worry about yet. We swung left onto the 1178 and left again onto the 1322 which was a fun, tight ride

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We stopped for coffee at a delightful cafe beside the 1322. Joy launched into the persimmons and we ate more than I should have of them

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A bit of Dutch-influenced architecture, perhaps, further along the 1322?

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Up into the pines

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and a bit more tourist trap architecture

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It's worth a stop there, as the views are great out both sides. Looking back towards Chiang Dao

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and the view on the other side of the road

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There's some fairly steep descents, although this bit wasn't too bad

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A quick shot whilst descending onto the flats showed we might be heading for some muddy riding. A couple of squalls passing through

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The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
I'd last visited the Burma border at the end of the 1322 way back in April 2014, with the late Auke Koopmans. We flew the drone over this camp - which is posted elsewhere on this forum. Here's a shot from the hill on the Thai side, from the 2014 trip

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and roughly the same spot on Monday, this week

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It's all quite verdant up near the border

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Nice hat

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We decided to stop for lunch when the rain started hitting us just after we left the border. These are the hills we're heading for

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It positively pelted down

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So.......

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Only one, with lunch, then back on the road

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Quick map check

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... then up into those hills. On concrete roads at first

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including some new ones

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Well, we know where the funding reached to

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I ran the GoPro through most of the dirt. We did a diversion up the hill to have a look back down towards the 1322, but it was a bit heavily treed to get a decent photo. That's the little spur on the track image below

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As it turned out, Eddie hit a very small rut coming out of the big stuff (he cleaned the big, slippery stuff easily), fell off at walking pace and aggravated a rib injury from a few months back.

He didn't even get a decent smearing of mud on him

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While we were deciding whether to roll him into a ditch or not, he decided to head back via the smooth roads, so as not to jolt his ribs too much.

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Here's the video showing what it was like up where he fell off, and the rest of the dirt.

 

The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
After we got back on the track to Pai, it was much drier and there were no issues with mud at all. There's a few steep bits and the ruts were up to about half a metre deep in places, but there was nothing to preclude taking a road bike through if you are confident on dirt. That would change in the rain.... it'd be a bit tougher but not diabolical. There was plenty of grip.

As we were going along, I realised I'd done part of this track before, again with the late Auke Koopmans. We'd come back to Pai after a trip to see the crashed helicopter and had done so on the 6014.... which we joined from the 4014 (see track image above). Back then, we'd had grip issues of a different sort... the bulldust was thick and slippery - here's a shot from that trip

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and with Auke at the crashed chopper

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No bulldust now (give it a few months)

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great scenery

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Lachie's got five years more than me under his belt, but, like me, suffers from leg cramp issues riding these little bikes

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It doesn't hurt to stop and take a break from time to time

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We were near Prathat Mueang Noi, and Deere turned in - as is seen in the video above

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Checking the bikes, they were almost clean

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Walking around, the pagoda has seen some extensive renovation over the five years since Auke and I visited

Now

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and back in April 2014

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This has been bricked in

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The bridge hasn't gotten any better since then

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Back on the road to Pai

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Oops... there's that cramp again

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and the descent into Pai

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Lovely scenery, but hard to capture on the move

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Ahhh... Medio de Pai

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and into it at the Nong Beer cafe

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Not the way Pai looked this time last year.

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But a two hour massage for Deere and I helped

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The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
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Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
We got a decent rain dump during the night and set out packed and ready to ride straight after breakfast. My favourite breakfast venue was shut - Yotaka - which was a pity, as I love their Eggs Benedict - and we filled up on a reasonable spread at the Blue Ox, just down the road. Lots of other places I'd have gone to for brekkie were also closed. Bloody Covid.

The town was a bit dreary as we departed.

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I wanted to show Lachie the alternative start to the back road back to Chiang Mai, so we turned off the 1095 and took the back road that's on the western side of the Pai River. We could see the steam from the Ban Muang Rae hot springs, but we continued on the smaller road and visited the other hot springs

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after taking in the sights along the way

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I wanted to try and capture the purple flowers on some of the trees along that route, but having a wet lens didn't help the process

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This hot springs is 4km in from the 1265 and worth a look. Be advised that the access road in from the 1265 is tight and sometimes the corners are a bit sandy. The road is called a "maze" on the road signs. The springs themselves are a bit more developed than the ones right beside the 1265, but the steamy air has rusted some of the walkways and rotted timbers

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94 C here... but further down, you can soak your feet if you want

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Purple? Is that what I wrote? Mauve maybe

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Back on the 1265, the rain stopped for a few km, but there were other hazards

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We stopped in Wat Chan briefly and were targeted by this chap, who seemed a few sandwiches short of a picnic

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Heading down the 1349, we encountered some lovely stretches of fresh bitumen.

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.... and bumped into some riders we know, including Ginger, who were headed the other way so we had a bit of a chat and then headed into the rain. The hills were looking good

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We waited out a squall whilst taking in the view at the strawberry patch

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Hmm - not sure about this panorama

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Just around the corner, the view towards Mae Hong Son was lovely.... albeit a bit distorted through a wet lens

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It was wet the whole way back to Samoeng, where we stopped for a feed at the Nest

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Followed by a quick blat over those wet hills and home for a quiet ale
 

2wheels

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Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Location
Chiang Mai
Bikes
Honda Rebel 500
I'd last visited the Burma border at the end of the 1322 way back in April 2014, with the late Auke Koopmans. We flew the drone over this camp - which is posted elsewhere on this forum. Here's a shot from the hill on the Thai side, from the 2014 trip

View attachment 88290

and roughly the same spot on Monday, this week

View attachment 88291

It's all quite verdant up near the border

View attachment 88292

Nice hat

View attachment 88293

We decided to stop for lunch when the rain started hitting us just after we left the border. These are the hills we're heading for

View attachment 88294

It positively pelted down

View attachment 88295

So.......

View attachment 88296

Only one, with lunch, then back on the road

View attachment 88297

Quick map check

View attachment 88298

... then up into those hills. On concrete roads at first

View attachment 88299

including some new ones

View attachment 88300

Well, we know where the funding reached to

View attachment 88301

I ran the GoPro through most of the dirt. We did a diversion up the hill to have a look back down towards the 1322, but it was a bit heavily treed to get a decent photo. That's the little spur on the track image below

View attachment 88302

As it turned out, Eddie hit a very small rut coming out of the big stuff (he cleaned the big, slippery stuff easily), fell off at walking pace and aggravated a rib injury from a few months back.

He didn't even get a decent smearing of mud on him

View attachment 88303

While we were deciding whether to roll him into a ditch or not, he decided to head back via the smooth roads, so as not to jolt his ribs too much.

View attachment 88304

Here's the video showing what it was like up where he fell off, and the rest of the dirt.

I don't think we've had the word "verdant" on RA before!
 

The Bigfella

Senior Member
Staff member
Joined
Aug 15, 2012
Bikes
KTM 950SER & EXC, BMW R90S & Dakar, MZ250, BSA B33, Norton 16H, Honda - 500 Fs & X, DRZs, XLs XRs CRFs CT110s etc
I don't think we've had the word "verdant" on RA before!
Having been named after my long-since-departed cousins, I'm sure I can come up with some new ones from here in the less-wuthered foothills of the Himalayas.
 
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