The train was late by a couple of hours and it was about 9 when we got off, packed up and hit the road. The nights sleep was terrible, can’t recall sleeping at all and I was a bit groggy. We stopped off for a bit of b’fast. Wish I had some double strong coffee, but no luck ere.
The route from Ubon Ratchathani to Chong Mek (the Thai side of the border) was a brand new highway built by the Sino-Thai corporation and as opposed to the Italian-Thai company on the Myanmar border, head guys had done a phenomenal job, the roads were silky smooth and fantastic t ride on. Just that the route was immensely boring. Chris commented, this could be some freeway In central California and I could see why.
I was sleepy and couldn’t get my legs to wake up either so it was a slow slog all morning. By noon, we reached a small town and decided to stop while the sun was too hot. It turned out to be a 3 hr stop and I dozed a bit too. As we left, I scouted some back roads to avoid the freeway and we took them. The roads were mud and gravel in parts and super big potholes. But to be honest, I’d take this over the freeway any day. After 15 km, we got back on the freeway and the last bit was a time trial into town.
We found a small food stop for dinner and looked for a wat. The only one seemed to be up a hill. Well, so be it. We pushed out bikes up and the really friendly monks let us sleep in a verandah with a good view over the border. Awesome. Laos, see you tomorrow!
Route: Ubon Ratchathani to Chong Mek
Distance: 83 km
Ascent: 1400 ft
Descent: 1100 ft
Time in saddle: 8:00 hrs
Expenses: Sg$ 6.71
Comments: New Sino-Thai built roads from Ubon Ratchathani to Chong Mek is just fantastic. The route is boring, but the roads are just silky smooth.