25-Dec-2004 -- This is the forth in a series of six confluence visits/attempts during a trip to Thailand in December 2004/January 2005 (Start).
We spent the night in Nan and the plan was to continue our travels to the west towards Chiang Mai by mid-morning. Enough time to check out the approach to this confluence or maybe even document it. The later seemed unlikely due to the mountainous terrain, but we had been lucky with 17N 101E and 18N 101E. One never knows unless one tries.
The road map showed a paved road getting within 1.8km of the confluence. This point was about 50km north-east of Nan. We enjoyed a nice ride over some hills through farmland in the morning fog. As we were climbing a ridge the fog began to burn off. This road on the ridge looked very promising and the distance shown by the GPS to the confluence kept shrinking…until it got to 1.9km. We parked at this spot and found a trail leading to some fields. We decided to explore the trail despite the fact that by this time my stomach was acting up. It felt ‘funny’ all morning, but now it wasn’t funny anymore. Maybe a little walking would help. We set off on the trail and walked for about 500m before the trail started to head down into a valley. This was as far as I could go. There was no way I could do the hiking in hilly country like this on that day. So at about 1.4km from the confluence we turned around.
It looks like at least one of the valleys has to be crossed. Maybe even the second valley, but if the confluence lies beyond that it might be tough since the next line of hills may qualify as mountains. The included pictures show how mountainous the terrain is. There are many fields on the slops, but it looks like most of them can only be reached on foot. It might be worthwhile to explore some dirt roads in the area and see if anything leads into the valleys close to the confluence. Nothing was shown on our maps. The trail we were on might also still be something to explore further.
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Next: 19N 98E