More than 30 hikers signed up for this weekend at Khun Tan. Most met at the train station and carpooled to the park, but 3 went directly there on their motorcycles. There was some confusion about who was leading the way, and one car missed a turn-off. The organizer forgot her phone, so we waited wondering when the driver would realize his mistake and come back. After some debate, the main group started up the trail from the parking lot, and then the 3 missing hikers showed up, having ended up in the rice fields before knowing they had missed the turn. In the meanwhile 5 energetic hikers returned to the park headquarters and followed the trail to the waterfall. (They have their own tale to tell.) We arrived at the cabins in time for a late lunch.
Never has the weather been better on Khun Tan. The temperature was cool, but never cold. The air was so clear that we had wonderful views from the dining area all the way to Doi Inthanon, Doi Suthep/Pui, and even Doi Chiang Dao. Most of the hikers took an extra walk up to the top for the 360 deg. view. Our wonderful cook began dinner preparations and many of the hikers helped. Some took a quick walk up the top for a 360 deg. view.
Such a wonderful banquet we had! There was deep fried fish, fried chicken drumsticks, barbequed ribs, and stir-fried vegetables with rice and somtam with Khanom jeen. Even the dogs had a feast of their own. We watched the skyline turn to red as the sun set.
After we had eaten our fill the evening was still early, much earlier than it felt. We had plenty of time to sit around and visit, dance to music, and a few card games created a lot of noise. We waited for the beer which had to be brought up from far below, and we celebrated 3 birthdays with 2 birthday cakes. Some of the hikers couldn’t wait for lights-out and retired early. At last the quiet and darkness of the mountains closed in.
It was a surprise to see how early most were up in the morning, preparing their own breakfast or enjoying rice soup with fish. By 10am all were packed, the place was clean and in order, and we started back down in small groups. We regrouped at the parking lot, waited for the motorcycles to bring the belongings down and then continued down to park headquarters for a leisurely lunch.
Thanks to all for a lovely weekend and to the Creator who arranged perfect weather and the beauty of his creation.
Hope to see many of you next year for this annual tradition.
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