Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Cycling Hua Hin - Prachuap Khiri Khan

January 9th Hua Hin - Prachuap Khiri Khan 116km

At last we start to ride, it has been nearly a month since we have ridden the bikes loaded up.  I no longer have to tow the trailer hooray!!  The other big bonus is not tent and no cooking!  So up and out for breakfast, we were on the rod just before 8am.

Last photo in Hua Hin

Now sometimes you just get lucky and today was one of those days.  As we cycled through Hua Hin a cycle tour group pulled out right in front of us complete with support truck and all.  We looked at each other and both thought it would be great to follow them if we could keep up so we could have a day of no navigation and a little advice.

These guys weren't carrying any gear and were all on road bikes so the pace was faster than we usually travel but we managed to keep up until their first stop.  We approached the guide and asked if we could tag along for the day.  He didn't mind and throughout the day proved to be a really nice guy.  They were however going 116km so I said to Maria we would drop off the back when she got tired.
First stop

Siam Bike Tours

Not a bad view

Follow those bikes!

After feeding on pineapple and bananas we chatted to the guys on the tour and found they were from Switzerland.  There were quite a mix of ages, one of the guys had cycled Cairo to Capetown last year 12,000km and was expecting to cover 21,000km in that year!

As we took off again we slowly got closer to the group but still hung off the back a little, after all these guys were paying for their guide!  The roads were quiet, flat and in general we had a tail wind so 30+ kph was common.  We had to watch out for the odd moooving obstacle!

We were still keeping up as we passed through Sam Roi Yot National Park and briefly stopped at the side of the road where they were growing tiger prawns in what looked like flooded fields!!!

The next stop at the visitors centre had some very persistent monkeys.  They were very keen to see what was in our bags but we made sure they kept their distance.
Cheeky monkey

Our adopted group

Maria getting in the peleton!

Lunch next where we got the guide to write down steamed vegetables and rice so Maria could show the restaurants what she wanted for lunch, she won't starve now!  The last part of the ride took us for a short stretch on the highway and just before we turned off there was a short climb.  This finished Maria so we waved to the support truck and we carried on trying to keep them in view.  It wasn't long before they were gone.

She had ridden about 100km at 30kph fully loaded, I was very proud and I think a lot of the group were surprised how well she kept up.

So now we had to navigate and as we stopped with the map another group rode up and stopped.  This really was our lucky day!  John was the tour guide taking a couple of Ozzys Steve and Pete on the same route.  They offered to show us the way so we happily accepted.

We rode and chatted, three nicer guys it would be hard to find especially on a back road in Thailand.

After one photo stop we arrived at their hotel where we said our goodbyes and went for a beer as well as to find a room.  As we looked for a room we were told to go back to the hotel as they do cheaper rooms.  We got a basement room for 600baht including breakfast!

After a wander around town we bumped into all of our riding buddies as the first group also stayed in the same hotel.  We joined John, Steve, Pete and there wives for a drink after dinner.  Later John found us in the lobby and gave us no end of useful advice about routes and hotels.  This has truly been a lucky and very special start to the ride!

I am sure I'm shrinking

One of the many temples

 Siam Bike Tours                          http://siambiketours.com/
John'sWebsite                               http://bicyclethailand.com/     

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