Another nice ride with John today. Starting out near Ban Thi, we meandered up towards San Kampaeng stopping at many reservoirs along the way.
First stop was Mae Tip Reservoir which we rode to on un-numbered irrigation canal roads. This one I had not been to before but John told me this was where he often came swimming. Lots of fishing here and that may account for why John said when he swam, the water smelt of fish.
Next up was Thi Reservoir, another reservoir on the irrigation canal road. Now I had been here before but sadly I forgot the route out off the far side of the dam & ended up in an orchard !
After lunch near the market in Ban Thi, we headed north towards San Kamphaeng on the 1147 and at the top, just past the golf course, we turned right onto the 5127.
Along here we took a right onto the 5120 and followed this all the way to the 3rd, 4th & 5th reservoirs. Firstly Huai Lan, then Huai Pa Rai and Doi Torn Reservoir. The tracks around these are quite easy and no problem despite being wet.
The highlight of the day has to be a Kao Pan Sa rocket festival we stumbled on near these reservoirs here in Mai On Tai.
Many teams of people had gathered with obviously closely guarded secrets about how to make their 20 metre bamboo pole rockets make their smoke trail last the longest and go the fastest.
Books were open and plenty of bets were being made. Very noisy, smokey and exciting as each rocket launched and the crowd roared and jeered their favourites on.
Being the only farangs at the party, we obviously got plenty of mentions on the PA from the tent.
Also in this area we visited the fish breed production farm and were kept from setting foot in the place by a barking pack of 8 dogs.
We made our way back down the 5120 and at the bottom, turned right and stopped off at Wat Pa Tung, a beautiful site and many interesting buildings.
Further along this road we came upon Wat Chiang Saen, opposite an attractive statue of an Army officer Meurn Dap Ruan. Another example of some wonderful buildings in the middle of nowhere and in danger of being forgotten.
Again a little further on the road, we came across a 14th Century Kiln with some shattered and ruined remnants.
At the end of this road the tarmac changes to mud and a dead end. But we walked a bit further and up the bank of the Mae Pha Nae reservoir. At the top it became clear that a road obviously came to this dam from another direction. Oh well, that’s for another day, time was getting on and we needed to return home.
6 Reservoirs, a 14th Century Kiln and a lot of smoke & excitement.[sgpx gpx=”/maps/ban-thi-july-2009.gpx” style=”width:100%; height:600px; border:1px solid gray; margin-right:20px; float:left;”]