Thursday, July 31, 2014

Not XTR but STR. Our upcoming adventure...

Thanks YC for this map!

Its just a few days before we set off to yet another adventure. This time, it will be our ride to Southern Thailand, exploring the region surrounding the Isthmus of Kra. We will fly to Phuket and make our way northwards to Khao Lak, then Ranong. We hope to make a day trip into Kawthaung, Burma just for the heck of it.

Then its a 140km ride to Chumphon on the East Coast, where we will hop on a ferry to snorkeling paradise of Ko Tao island for a few nights. We will either train or bus our way to Hat Yai, where we may meet a friend and ride across the border into Malaysia. Destination - Penang where we will meet up with our wives,  friends and 3000 other cyclists who will participate in the yearly Campaign for a Lane CFAL event.

What is interesting about this part of Thailand has been the idea of carving a canal for shipping through this narrow stretch of 44km land like the Suez Canal. This has been mooted as early as 1677 by the Thai King Narai as it would bypass the Straits of Malacca. Various initiatives have come and gone due to a myriad of economic and political factors. China who now harbors ambitions have expressed interest in funding this and it would be interesting to see how far this goes,  especially geopolitically.

Khao Lak, a renown beach resort, is also intriguing as it was the most affected area of the 2004 Tsunami. Sadly, it swept away a few thousand lives and caused unbelievable damage. There still lies a big naval boat stranded way inland, and it will be interesting to see that on this trip.

My weapon of choice will be my ultra comfortable Bike Friday Expedition touring foldie. Weather wise, it is the wet and rainy season. A most perfect time actually to beat the tropical humidity. All in, it should be a fun 500 or 700km ride with the Magnificent 7.

Stay tune on our STR Adventure with Lovethefold!

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