aka Nam Mae Lai Noi watershed hike.
Up one shady ridge, along a second and down a third. Nothing too steep or strenuous and most regular hikers should have little difficulty, though the first 3.5 kms is all uphill and will probably take us about 90 minutes. A few narrow sections above steep drops, and some spiky undergrowth, tripable roots, slippery leaf fall and dried cow pats. Cows and nasty biting black flies may be encountered. There may be some burning up there at this time of year, as everywhere.
A high level ‘escape the heat, smoke and dust’ (we hope) hike, starting at just under 1100m and climbing up to 1649m, on the east side of the Chiangmai valley. Great ridge top views, pine smells, and relatively cool breezes (probably about 10 degrees cooler than in town). 9-10 kms, up (and later down) almost 700m. Around 4-5 hours hiking, including lunch on the rocks.
In front of Central Festival Mall (on Doi Saket-Chiang Rai 118 Rd side), opposite the Isuzu showroom, before 07.30. We will then car share (limited car parking available at the trailhead) in convoy out past Doi Saket, towards Mae Khamphong/Flight of the Gibbon, for just over an hour (55 kms) to the village of Ban Pok Pang Nai where the hike starts/ends. Some low-gear hills to negotiate near the trailhead but all on surfaced roads.
Aftermath perhaps at the now-famous Giant (treehouse) coffee shop, but it is rather expensive and apparently often completely booked up at weekends. There’s a fun short zipline for 200 baht, but not sure if they serve Anders’ favourite amber rehydration fluid.
Hike leader: Mike
• at least 2 litres of water/rehydration drink, energy snacks and lunch.
• sun protection, strong footwear, long sleeves/trousers to stop stings, bites and thorns.
• plenty of energy, enthusiasm and good humour.
• 100 baht for your driver if you are a passenger. Change of clothes recommended too.
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