Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Washed out

Like the previous posting, everything seems better in the past. This also applies to this waterfall near Pai township in the northern tip of Thailand near the Burmese border.

Pai itself is a very relexed place to stay, a broad valley surrounded by mountains. The inhabitants of this valley are many different hill tribes giving each village a different feel. The river passing Pai flows gently. Traffic is slow and far between, it's off-the-track a bit. There's not much to do, a waterfall here, a hot spring there, some cycling, walking and possibly rafting. Just a place to soak up the atmosphere.

Anyway Mo Paeng (or Mor Pang) was apparently a beautiful waterfall located in the forests west of Pai town. However a flash flood in 2005 stripped the banks of the forest cover. That does not mean that the waterfall is not worth a visit. It is.

It consists of a number of steps possibly added together to 50 m height, each step 5-10m. The water flows over flat smooth rocks and are great for sliding.

Located about 10 km from Pai, it's a nice bike ride, though it's uphill struggle, good for going back and this way you work up a sweat which makes the falls and pools more enticing! It's past the last village, there's a sort of a parking area from where you follow an irrigation ditch for 200 m. I suppose it can get very busy, but when we visited (2006) it was far from that, even so quiet to allow for a family member to go au-naturel.

There are no facilities, though a Shan village nearby has some shops. Accomodation is to be had in Pai town itself, which is far outpost of mae Hoing Son province. There is a good if winding road to Chiang Mai.

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