“Travel makes one modest, you see what a tiny place you occupy in the world…” – Gustave Flaubert
|(Route 12 Coffee stop)|
Day 08: 17 December 2015 (Thursday)
Route: Khon Kaen – Chiang Mai
Distance: 640 km
It was a nice cool ride through National Parks and dense forest towards Route 12. The first part of the journey was riding the curves of winding hilly terrain with cool winds blowing on our face. The second part was more of sweeping curves downhill.
Half way to Route 12 the group was split into two when a bike ran out of fuel. We were quite surprised that the rider waited this far to realise that his fuel was running low in the middle of nowhere. By now he should know his petrol consumption very well not to get into this kind of situation.
The group in front rode on to look for a petrol station but could not find any. At Ban Wang Yao junction, we came across a small manually operated petrol kiosk and with the assistance of a local, managed to fill-up a jerry can and went to the rescue.
We made a brief stop at Route 12 Coffee to have light refreshments and for some souvenir shopping. This was our second time here. The last time we were here was during our solo trip to Khao Kho in the middle of this year.
We continued riding to Chiang Mai by-passing Sukhothai taking Route 11 to Lampang cutting short the mileage and hoping to arrive in Chiang Mai early before nightfall. Unfortunately, before we reached the Junction to Lampang the same bike again complained of low fuel resulting the group to look for petrol once again on this remote route.
Once we entered Route 1, the main road to Chiang Mai, there were many petrol stations along the way. We expected the troubled bike to refuel first and then joined us but didn’t and again had to be rescued. The rest of the group rode on slowly along Route 1 and stopped at a Petrol station, refuelled, performed our prayers and had a very late lunch while waiting.
After a long tiring wait, we reconvened and rode direct to Chiang Mai and arrived town centre at night. After dinner at Sophia Restaurant we checked in the Night Bazaar Inn. As it was already late, we missed our usual foot reflexology session and slept like a log.
|(A light breakfast, a noticeable happy lot on one side)|
|(Riding out of town towards Route 12)|
|(Passing through the National Park)|
|(Rescue stop for a troubled motorbike)|
|(Beware of wild elephants roaming the area)|
|(Riding passed a road block looking for a petrol station)|
|(Patiently waiting for the rest, no one was left behind)|
|(The start of Route 12)|
|(A long and winding road ahead)|
|(The junction to Khao Kho, the Switzerland of Thailand)|
|(Riding the twisties uphill)|
|(One unique coffee shop, a must stop next time)|
|(Beautiful resorts and cafes along Route 12)|
|(Approaching Route 12 Coffee Stop)|
|(The Hulk, a new addition to the attraction)|
|(Iron Man, looking over the valley)|
|(Girls in traditional ethnic costumes)|
|(Proud to have our KKB stickers on the wall)|
|(A nice view point along Route 12)|
|(A resort and elephant sanctuary)|
|(Riding the by-pass road to Lampang cutting short a good distance)|
|(Keeping track of the mileage)|
|(The bike having trouble again the second time)|
|(Looking for a petrol station on an isolated road)|
|(A tired depressed feeling, after a long day)|
|(Riding at night with impaired vision)|