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Existentialism-- Just a bloody good excuse to go riding...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Chiang Mai, Thailand-Nov (2)

Been a month since I was back from Chiang Mai. Probably one of the best break despite almost not going on the trip... As usual, got Chwee to thank for everything for this trip again. Superb planner and everything timed down to the hilt as usual.

This is also the time of the year where everyone heads up for some good riding so it was kinda like local rides meeting different friends there instead of our usual trailheads in Singapore. Rode on different day with different folks...
Clockwise from top left. 
Mr On-The-Dot Chwee and his usual "Banana uniform",  
Dave, Ernest and Les-- Coffee @ 3000ft 
Me, Lone Run Day
Joining The Rideables on one of the nicest flowy trails in the area...

Getting there at the start of the dry season, riding was a refreshing change from the usual fetid tropical jungle rides that is all we get back home. Cool air, low humidity and goggles that dont fog up 10 seconds once you start wearing them.... But the terrain certainly is taxing for those like us not used to having so much to roll down. Who would have guess pulling up the blanket at night would result in finger cramping from a long day of descents... 
 From street to restaurant... 2 words on the food. Cheap. Good.

Lodging, nice and spacious and very affordable.

One of the most important aspects would be the uplift. If one isn't in a big group with dedicated transport or following one of the biking tours up there... time to hone your bargaining skills.

See those red mini trucks converted into taxis.. Drive a good bargain, especially if you'll gonna be doing more than one trip a day.

When wondering off on your own, minimally a GPS will be needed. Still that won't be easy as the trails start splitting up halfway down the mountains. 

Again, Chwee's got everything tidied up, from our cabbie, Nong to trail coordinates taken from other riders who has been regulars in this biking haven.

If you are gonna be signing up a package, might as well go with the best there is. X-Biking.

Enough of the touristy review... let's get to the rides.

Pushing the EG harder with each passing day after the "warm-up"... Times like these are really when I appreciate "knowing your bike" where one has painstakingly build and setup every aspects of AND most importantly  trusting it when the time comes. Aahh.. the Zen-ness of one with the bike... Suspension? oh yea...X Fusion and DSP rocks.

 ROcks and more ROcks... DH rigs certainly have the advantage in some of the sections. Hopefully by the next trip, I'll be back with one. With trips like these increasing, reckon its justifiable to go all the way with a dual crown setup....

When the helmets are off... its the breath taking views for those of us that doesnt live near mountains and fresh mountain air that is really appreciated. As much as the riding part is fun...its standing in awe looking at nature I believe that keeps attracting people to places like this.

Getting late.. will let the video compilation finish telling the rest of it...

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