02/09/2014 – 220 days/19492 miles

The Mae Hong Son Loop is about 600km of road through the Mae Hong Son province, the most mountainous in Thailand. Supposedly (and so far, I agree) it has some nice riding and scenery, along with a few great stops to make along the way.
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I’m riding it with my buddy Bo, from Australia, who I met in Bangkok. I’d been planning on riding this loop, or at least a portion of it, and he mentioned wanted to rent a bike in Chiang Mai to do it, so after about 30 seconds of discussion, it was decided that we’d head out from Chiang Mai together. We had to push back our start date by a day, due to an evening of drinking that required a day of recovery
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Anyway, our first day was spent riding from Chiang Mai to Mae Sariang, which was about 200km to the southwest, the last half of which made for some fantastic riding through nice, winding roads while leaves were falling from the trees.
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Upon arriving in Mae Sariang, we found a little guesthouse with coffee and wifi so that we could look for a hotel. Turns out all the best reviews we saw online were for the place we were already at, so we booked the night there. Within a few minutes of looking online at what to do in the town, we decided we better stay two nights, which allowed us to spend today doing a little riding and hiking around the area.

Time for an evening swim down by this little Huck Finn style raft in the river outside of town.
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For the day in Mae Sariang, we went on a hike through the jungle, with our first stop being to a little farm growing mostly kidney beans.
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Inside the little hut on the farm, there was a pot of rat soup on the fire, which we didn’t eat, and neither of us were terribly disappointed.
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The farmer then brought out his hand made shotgun, so we did a little bit of target practice.
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Reloading, with a not-so-very-carefully measured amount of black powderIMG_4753
Rolling up a wad of coconut husk.IMG_4757
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We followed this up with a hike to a series of waterfalls, one of which had a swimming hole which could probably have been the inspiration for the infinity pool.
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And in the afternoon, we rode up to a hot spring.
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Had to get across the surprisingly unstable bridge
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Tomorrow, we continue north, to the town of Mae Hong Son.

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