11 April 2010 – Chaing Mai
Sunday was the day we decided to hire motor bikes/scooters. The brazilians has hired them the day before, we had a quick blat on them and thought they were the best fun you could have on two wheels. So $6NZD for a days hireage and $4NZD worth of gas we were off onto the Chiang Mai highway. The Brazilians (Kyle and Loius) were along for the ride and a Canadian couple (Derrick and Kelly) also hired bikes so it was a 30 minute white person convoy out to the national park. The bikes got up around the 100kmh mark which we thought wasn’t too bad.
Geared for action
Our DIY national park tour really consisted of visiting a couple of good waterfall sites, mainly so we could get wet…sometimes it’s hot in Thailand. The spots we went to were not very tuoristy, there were plenty of Thai’s around having their holiday picnic’s and swimming in the falls. At one of the falls (one site had 10 falls that you walked along beside and swam in) the locals thought us white skinned giants were so interesting that they wanted to get photos with us; so we obliged however didn’t agree to sign autographs…. We mainly sat around in the falls, water smashing us in the head and back was actualy pretty fun! These are some of the falls:
Louis, Jono and Fry enjoying the sun
Checking out the first fall
Tranquil for the Thais
Perfect spot to perch
SSSSsssssss….Derrick and Kelly were keen to check out the upper falls so we thought we’d go for a walk too. We were walking on well made concrete paths, but each side of us was a whole lot of dried dead leaves on the ground amongst the trees – perfect habitat for snakes we joked… turns out our keen eye for snake habitats is actuallly similar to David Attenborough, we knew what we were talking about. “Oh my god, Oh my god, Oh my god” and the fastest moving feet I’ve seen were the alarm that made us turn around…as Kelly (who has the biggest phobia of snakes I’ve ever seen) fly’s past us. A 2 meter plus snake had just slithered across the path within about 15cm behind her heel, fair to say she absolutely sh*t herself. So our keen eye for snake habitats doesn’t extend to specimens; but we’ll just say it was browny greeny and long, maybe a cobra or soemthing else, either way it was a snake. We were a little more ‘alert’ after that experience and Kelly resorted to getting a piggy back from her good man Derrick, in the slightly more snakey areas. On our return to the lower falls, again in a distinctly snakey habitat, I noticed a bit of rustling down to my right and sure enough another snakey specimen was moving away from us – not quite as close this time and we told Kelly it was a gecko…. good up close experience with wild snakes!
Derek putting in the hard yards
The trip back to town included a stop over at a road side bar for a cold Singha and a de-brief on the days events.
Not a bad experience for $10NZD!