We were very happy to have an ideal number of hikers for the coffee shop hike, 12, which goes to show the popularity of the CMU coffee shop. All were good hikers with a sense of humor, and we had good weather too, cool with a cloud cover and only one short encounter with rain. The song tao driver charged us 140 baht each for a ride to the Khun Chang Khian checkpoint and from the temple down to the arboretum . As there was an option at the start of the hike to either continue on the road to the campground and then on to the coffee shop, or climb on up to the top of Doi Pui befo re coming on to the coffee ship, most of the hikers wanted to be more adventurous, so 10 went up the trail to the summit with only 2 (the smart ones) opting to stay on the road. At this point the hike became a bit adventuresom, for we somehow got off the right trail coming down to the campground and followed the longer one, so had to contend with hundreds of leeches ……… ………to say nothing of the trees which blocked the trail in places. All took it with a good sense of humor; and a good cup of coffee seemed to make up for the difficulties. From there on all went as planned. We even found a small well-made bridge across one of the stream crossings. At the end of the hike we took the long detour via the park headquarters to avoid the ugly tin shacks at the temple area, only to discover the shacks were being dismantled and the trail apparently open as before. If was very nice to have repeat hikers as well as some new ones, including a 9 year hiking wiz!
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