Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Cycling Surat Thani - Khao Sok

January 16th Surat Thani - Khao Sok 119km

The 6.00am alarm didn't help, Just as we were about to leave I noticed my front tyre was flat.  This is only the 2nd flat in what is about 6500km and they have both been in my front wheel.  I managed to put a new tube in without taking the bags off, still it was 8.00am before we left.

We had only 5 turns to make today , the first out of the hotel followed by another 100m later.  The cycling is urban sprawl but the traffic was nothing like the rush hour madness when we arrived.  The next turn which only took a few minutes to reach started to climb then descend transporting us from city to rubber plantations within minutes. These uniformed lines of trees looked so much different to the usual hectic bush.  I started to wonder what the rubber from these trees would go to make, a new inner tube or maybe a condom?

Before long we were turning onto the 401 which we followed until the final turn 1.5km from our destination Khao Sok National Park.  The road undulated with an upward trend, was not too busy and the views improved as we went. 

Spot the scooter riding down the wrong side of the road, this is the norm!

We had one more chase by the local dogs, Maria's cap gun fell to pieces so we are down to just my bb gun.  There are 2 types of attack, the first is mainly house dogs running out protecting their territory.  These dogs tend to be up to speed by the time they hit the road and have to catch you up, they don't seem to run too far and shouting at them usually makes them stop.  The second type is the more worrying manky stray dogs lurking in the middle of nowhere.  They tend to stand and wait till you ride along side then give chase barking and snarling around your ankles.

Now the dogs today were the latter type and there were 2.  Just as they started to run I shot the closest and he stopped running but his mate was hot on my heels.  It is difficult to load and pedal like hell at the same time and once I had, I shot and missed.  I resorted to shouting at the mutt and he slowed and gave up, I am glad I did those intervals now!

Khao Sok is a proper tourist trap with resorts and bungalows aimed at everybody from the luxury tourist to the backpacker.  Our room cost 900baht with breakfast,  quite alot considering last nights hotel but the room is big and clean with room for the bikes.  I am sure with more searching we could of found a cheaper place but this will do.

This one was a little more than our budget

Tomorrow we are going to go for a hike in the park.


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