Friday, January 24, 2014

The Scoopy and Fino Route in North Thailand. Day 1/7

The Scoopy and Fino Route


Samantha sent an email to all of our friends we met during our round the world trip for a Christmas greeting. Thor Anderson replied:

You look good in the Santa Clause hats.  Jerry and I will be at the HU meeting in Chiang Mai in January.  If that’s in your plans it would be nice to see you there.
Have a great 2014.

That email and sent a signal to the siren to activate the alarm in the house. We were so excited that Thor and Jerry will be coming to Chiang Mai this year for the biker’s meeting on 10 and 11th January.
During our round the world trip and we reached Chiang Mai, that’s where we first met Thor and Jerry.

We continued our trip, few months later we were in Germany and we met both of them again.
We continued our trip, few months later we were in San Francisco, staying with Thor!

2 amazing gentlemen that we have met and we would want to met again. Both of them are close to 80 and are still riding around, I mean tough off beaten track rides!
Ideas came into my mind on how to go Chiang Mai again meeting Thor and Jerry since we did it many times with our bike. We considered:

Taking Hope 2.0, that will lead us 8 days up and down the highway from home, repair and maintenance for such big rides, expenses for riding up and down the 8 days, risk of road usage for the 8 days and the same experience we are going through. Do we still want to have the kind of appraisal from the locals and friends saying: Wao, you rode a motorcycle from Singapore to Chiang Mai? 

Nope, that’s not our main objective.

Taking our truck up north: yes, that’s a brand new adventure but lots of red tape crossing the Singapore – Malaysia border. No thanks.
Flying to Chiang Mai? Do what? Just 2 nights to meet them and back? Shall we do something more worth while?


The research started off when we really decided to buy air tickets 1 week before leaving. Flight from Singapore to Chiang Mai cost RM825 per person, round trip and has limited flight dates. So we chose 5th January, Sunday morning and back on 11th January, Saturday evening. It was a little tight because Samantha had an important gathering on 12th January, Sunday morning.

We have 7 days and 6 nights to spend, look at google map on the border mountains between Myanmar and Thailand, making sure those towns were not mentioned in any of the travel guide, look at routes that were not along the main road, link the points together, calculate 4-5 hours of riding per day, look at bike rental pricing in Chiang Mai and decide on the best machine.

Day 1, Sunday.
Early flight, took a taxi to the airport, had a posh Hong Kong salty noodle with luncheon meat, took our record setting journey from Singapore to Chiang Mai with a time of 2 hours and 45 minutes, took a local taxi at standard rate of RM15 to Coocase
We contacted Leslie, the Coocase distributor of Thailand and he had a few machine for rent and all of the machine comes with Coocase.

What so cool about Coocase? I didn’t realized it, and neither Leslie pay me to advertise for his product.

It comes with interchangeable top color, inner protection liner for your helmet, special locking system, USB charging system, remote lock and alarm for some selected models. We picked up 2 new bikes (less than 4000km mileage), automatic gear, 4 stokes and lots of compartment.
Honda Scoopy Prestige 110cc (AKA: The black one)
Yamaha Fino 115cc (AKA: The yellow one)

RM15 per day per bike rental fee.
RM3 per day for insurance against thief and accident (see their foot notes)
Located at: N18 48.164 E98 57.913
Lesson learnt: Bring your own helmets

Our route:

To the north, enjoy what the local is enjoying, see the least tourist polluted places before it gets polluted with recommendation from travel guide, ride slow so that we can see more things and enjoy the view, the moment and more photo opportunity. Hardly we would want to pay and enter any tribe villages to visit the tribe, it’s not so real as we feel like the same visiting a zoo. Not saying that they are animal but, its just not real! Can you imagine, after the visiting hours in those tribe village, they undress the tribe costume, go to the rear of the ticketing center, punch card, ride their motorcycle back to their home surfing internet? Maybe I’m a little imaginative.

We have not much issue with handling the black and yellow one on the highway @ 60-70km per hour, as there will not be much highway riding on this 7 days route.
This is the usual route to the Mae Hong Song, not for us this time. Anyway, Mae Hong Song is not the only place with 1864 curves.

Stop by this place:

N19 22.348 E98 56.900

Nice garden, good coffee.

After 90km, the fun starts! Nice scenery, comfortable turns.

Our aim for the day, to reach Piang Luang.

We didn’t know what to see in Piang Luang until we reached there, Chinese looking people start to appear,
We chose this place to visit because it is out of the touristy Mae Hong Song and it is near a border.

What is in Piang Luang and what is there to visit?

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