Today’s ride was set at 125km making it the longest ride of our current tour, but more of an issue than the distance was Khun Chae National Park and the mountain that lurk within it.
With a lot of distance to cover we rose just in time to see a remarkable sunrise.
Before managing to successfully navigate ourselves out of the hotels substantial grounds and back on route.
At the first opportunity we pulled over for a fruitastic breakfast and got stocked up for the remainder of the day. Although fruit is abundant here in Thailand we still can’t help but fill up when we get the chance.
We had to stop and double check the name of this ‘Resort’, but were reassured Cabbages & Condoms was fully legit.
It turns out its run by a safe sex awareness charity as opposed to a perverted farmer.
The gradient started to creep up from this point and although we had no idea on the length of the climb we knew it was going to be long by the amount of peaks spreading out before us.
Caught a glimpse of this scary fella hiding in the woods just off the road. It was all the motivation we needed to put the power down and get away from him ASAP.
As with most big climbs in Thailand the final bit was the steepest, or at least felt that way.
At the top we were welcomed with a cheer by a few soldiers eating lunch and headed over to see what was on the menu and if we could eat any of it. Despite the lack of fruit they rustled us up some fried veggies and so much rice they couldn’t quite believe it.
This restaurant signalled the highest point of the ride, halfway for the day and acted as a natural gateway to our final goal of Chiang Mai.
What can I say about the downhill? It was long and fast and we both had a smile on our faces from top to bottom. The only down side was dropping my shades, eventually stopping after throwing on the breaks only to see a car destroy them with its front wheel.
We were relieved to see this sign welcoming us to Chiang Mai and new it would be much further.
By this point we had been out in the sun for the hottest part of the day and despite drinking a lot of water were starting to feel the effects of the heat. The same cannot be said of this chap though as he pulled up next to us in a winter jacket! I had to take the picture just to prove to myself u wasn’t hallucinating.
The end of the ride had us back at our new WarmShowers friends Dell and Nong’s where a cold shower and comfy bed awaited us.
These guys are great hosts and really made us feel welcome and we hope to see them again as I have a feeling this will not be our last trip to Chiang Mai!
It was the 1st of June and not only was this the national holiday of ‘Buddha Day’, but it was also the start of the Raw Till 4 Thai Fruit Festival here in Chiang Mai (the vegan capital of Thailand).
Unfortunately we got into town to late for the opening event, but were lucky enough to catch up with a few of the crew over dinner!
Arriving in Chiang Mai also signals the end to our cycle tour of Thailand. Although we are not flying back to the UK for a few weeks and will definitely still be riding our bikes a lot we will also be getting trains and hopeing to spend a bit of time in one place reflecting on our experiences over the last 7 months on the road.
Thank you for taking the time to read our blog and we hope it will encourages and inspires you to let a bit more adventure into your life!