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-   -   Vietnam-Laos-Thailand-Cambodia... On Minsks (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=617754)

Mullet5 09-06-2010 07:27 PM

Vietnam-Laos-Thailand-Cambodia... On Minsks
 
Hopefully this won't be frowned upon, but this isn't a "live" ride report, we took this trip from 12/19/2009 to 1/10/2010. Between having 3 motorcycles and 12 cars that need constant attention, and being an Olympic level procrastinator, somehow I haven't managed to get around to writing this until now.

My wife Larisa (Audigirl) and I, along with our friend Aivars, decided that we should go ride through South East Asia on motorcycles, but couldn't find very much useful info about doing it. There are companies that do guided tours, but none that crossed borders, and we wanted to see Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia. There are companies that rent bikes (usually XR250s), but we were unsure if we would be able to cross borders with rented bikes. Would they want ownership papers? Would they take the bike from us and throw it in a river, thereby making the rental agency slightly annoyed with us?

So we set off for Hanoi with no real plan except "Find motorcycle, ride far"

We spent a day in the Old Quarter of Hanoi just wandering around, getting the lay of the land, and realizing what an awesome place we were in. It is amazing what a two wheeled culture this is; Everything is delivered on a bicycle or a scooter.

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/ZD4TevNsoGEoeTeJ9fN4EA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWJu2PEOvI/AAAAAAAAIK4/cKloSmIcc6E/s800/IMG_5237.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/x9DXcdyEwXo1DakTZ7jfGA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWJvgfh2ZI/AAAAAAAAIK8/ThHiC5KM88E/s800/IMG_5238.JPG" /></a>

This is not an uncommon sight
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/sLY7o_BUQayL0amZADWARA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWJw0WI2-I/AAAAAAAAILA/gKnMTrSltm0/s800/IMG_5240.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/CiLeuaFePvUfeSL1-W_qDw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWLOBTOskI/AAAAAAAAILI/zPyKQimj70s/s800/IMG_5258.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/CIKxYEK9-Mfrecinlc-0Ag?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWLrNjHWxI/AAAAAAAAILM/L5GasTsfvAc/s800/IMG_3958.JPG" /></a>

Legends Beer, our favorite place to hang out. They have great food, $1 500mL beer, and a view of this uncontrolled six way intersection.

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/B1Xaw7i8fFCprh8yZCBOKw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWNb8s9xDI/AAAAAAAAILU/TYN-D2hlXos/s800/IMG_3982.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/bk_3418tPUCu4bWGMICYoA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWNu5dMdOI/AAAAAAAAILY/ISXaQJo-nIo/s800/IMG_3986.JPG" /></a>

Left to right - Me (Grayson), Larisa, and Aivars
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/2O8wxBv-omXKeHwrosPXlA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWOag6zECI/AAAAAAAAILc/i3kQ_WbxR4s/s800/IMG_5265.JPG" /></a>

We spent a lot of time at Legends, enjoying good beer and watching the crazy intersection. Here's just a few highlights...

Need an awning delivered? Scooter!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/axLiA_M5X4LQB9hQzE8VcQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWPP-3SjbI/AAAAAAAAILk/hV6Fqzefzrs/s800/IMG_3987.JPG" /></a>

Need flowers delivered? Bicycle!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/pNdBRnoWAQHRDB7rSVe3qg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWPUQT8OGI/AAAAAAAAILo/UJYKCxVoDGM/s800/IMG_3989.JPG" /></a>

Need a small child delivered? Scooter!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Op0I3ysntPsoFZe7OomA2w?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWPYbexOPI/AAAAAAAAILs/C8o_PtK5Uqk/s800/IMG_3990.JPG" /></a>

Need 18,000lbs of rice delivered? Scooter!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/osldo-BiMZme8fts1CQPcQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWPsgnKjPI/AAAAAAAAILw/d_GGxMaNIDE/s800/IMG_4000.JPG" /></a>

Pictur frames? You guessed it!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Y4JreoAHla_xUwHky62p7A?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWSrHTEC_I/AAAAAAAAIMM/c_5Smvt5j28/s800/IMG_4023.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/DxnaVDsm0vqRQRJLzX_7yA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWSf2j7uhI/AAAAAAAAIMI/Bp9wG2O7jXw/s800/IMG_4020.JPG" /></a>

Our first End Of Day photo. If you cant make it out, the sign says "SFO-TPE-HAN, Walked 6 miles around Hanoi. Tired."
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/9bDikyAgi935RxbkPg57mg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIWTnGowBAI/AAAAAAAAIMU/_EHASST5lzI/s800/IMG_5290.JPG" /></a>

GB 09-06-2010 07:38 PM

We like live reports... Let's ride :thumb

:lurk

carmima 09-06-2010 08:50 PM

well at least they're wearing helmets now :huh

Lookin forward to the rest :thumb

Icecream 09-06-2010 08:52 PM

Always love an Asia RR. Can't wait. :1drink

Mullet5 09-07-2010 09:49 AM

The ride begins
 
So after a couple days of wandering around the Old Quarter, we found Mr. Cuong, the Minsk Master. He sold us three Minsks for $450 each, and the next day we were off.

Unfortunately things were too hectic to take any pictures of the bikes when we picked them up, so the first pics are about 60 miles outside of the city, at our first coffee stop
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/7izpeWzFaJ03dHrKBrUCwg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZa1gFpPsI/AAAAAAAAIMg/Ir-ZvACXgkA/s800/IMG_5597.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/G8ew85FhdpwFi50C5akiow?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZa6GgfLHI/AAAAAAAAIMk/1xefspKoDU0/s800/IMG_5598.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/m2Tc1zmI55_hkF2iHvlIgw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZbIF1Il7I/AAAAAAAAIM0/U1ThkK9KOqM/s800/IMG_5601.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/RHzHrBh5DzaiEZC3CEVhLQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZcykCy99I/AAAAAAAAINE/6B1ihNw1MwI/s800/IMG_5611.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/XAWmV-uoD1m8qkuiNfYHLQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZc0FN_DII/AAAAAAAAINI/FsITiyaU0B8/s800/IMG_5608.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/IPriJFvjidPSd4AIYOVNMg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZc2CpgFTI/AAAAAAAAINM/8v3ty5g9bZg/s800/IMG_5609.JPG" /></a>


Parked at our hotel, we covered 190km that day.
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/LPa_OkQtAb4eFIDeaokaeA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZeYiY42qI/AAAAAAAAINc/Vy-Ebcx3l1U/s800/IMG_5612.JPG" /></a>

indoor parking!
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/eL7bdCjVmv2Hy_rE6i0dZw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZeVmK9biI/AAAAAAAAINU/ta-og8bGAo4/s800/IMG_5613.JPG" /></a>

190km, Hanoi - Tanh Hoa
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/oI_x7zrqgTTvlB7IjfGbMQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh5.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIZeW_BjuOI/AAAAAAAAINY/DSdKapxHjsQ/s800/IMG_5620.JPG" /></a>

pfdavidz 09-07-2010 12:42 PM

nice
 
this is the exact report i was looking for! im planning on doing the same trip.

where is the rest???? come onnnnnn

mcc66 09-07-2010 01:02 PM

:lurk

Look forward to reading more. Enjoy reading Asian ride reports. Thanks for sharing
:thumb

mcc66
Michael

Mullet5 09-07-2010 02:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pfdavidz
this is the exact report i was looking for! im planning on doing the same trip.

where is the rest???? come onnnnnn


I'll try to do at least one installment a day. Pfdavidz, how soon are you planning on doing this trip?

pfdavidz 09-08-2010 11:32 AM

im planning on doing this in about a year or so. BUT I WOULD LOVE TO READ THE WHOLE REPORT - LIKE RIGHT NOW!!!!!! just kidding. i ll be following your report so you will definitely hear from me

The Toad 09-08-2010 11:56 AM

Exactly !!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by pfdavidz
this is the exact report i was looking for! im planning on doing the same trip.

where is the rest???? come onnnnnn

What he said

Mullet5 09-09-2010 09:47 AM

Tanh Hoa
 
I didn't mention in my last post that Tanh Hoa (the city we stopped in the first night) sucks. Wide streets, big grey box shaped cement buildings. Hard to find anything to eat. After walking around for the better part of an hour, we found a restaurant that looked half way decent. This was the first encounter with what we began to call "Hammered Chicken". I don't think we have any pictures of this dish, but we ended up getting it A LOT (many restaurants don't have a selection, they just make one thing, and that's all you get).

Here is how I think Hammered Chicken is made:
1. Do not feed your chicken, because feeding it will put meat on its bones.
2. When your chicken dies of hunger, pluck it and clean it.
3. Once done plucking and cleaning the chicken, chop it into small pieces using a dull hatchet. Don't forget the feet!
4. Lightly fry.

So basically what you get is a plate of chicken bones with teeny little pieces of meat clinging to them, and it's your job to extract the meat somehow. I think it was so much work that it turned out to be a negative calorie food.

So after this lovely meal we decided to find a grocery store to get some chips or something. We found one on the 3rd story of a department store... strange.

I don't think very many tourists come through this town, because while we were walking around the store, we were drawing crowds. People following us, waving to us, taking pictures of us. All of it was super friendly, just unusual. You couldn't feel more out of place if you were an NBA player in Loompaland

Mullet5 09-09-2010 10:12 AM

Day Two
 
This is when things started to get really cool. We were getting comfortable with the bikes, the Chatterboxes, and the roads. As soon as we were out of Tanh Hoa we were on these great meandering roads through rice paddies and over small hills. Great pavement everywhere. I kept thinking about how much I would love to be here on my '75 XS650 or one of my cars.

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/BBz_HNsFVNiW7AabdJlNJw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6SJr1teI/AAAAAAAAIR8/Y0kKqMyZ_Z4/s800/IMG_5638.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/lyJx3klYMXccuz2FJsv6_w?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6TOglcNI/AAAAAAAAISA/yBRYGGifUm0/s800/IMG_5641.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/uHCHHxNJgKs0RUaPnEJNWA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh3.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6T4zz3pI/AAAAAAAAISE/mV9ktx520yE/s800/IMG_5644.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/5HdXJYfGcdeLxx1Sv4Y0kA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6US6ueeI/AAAAAAAAISI/hhIfm_cOIlg/s800/IMG_5646.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/gV8wglc4qPBWnKph5IPqpw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6VfUKdTI/AAAAAAAAISM/4UEv-q9oll0/s800/IMG_4134.JPG" /></a>

Stopping for a Clif bar and some water.
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/igbd5e3ufGpxBHI3RkioSQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh6.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6W0M-YLI/AAAAAAAAISQ/uY7uWSnMCoc/s800/IMG_5662.JPG" /></a>

<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/1k2Rbel_W7KlYqO1KPw8Bg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6aOtnYqI/AAAAAAAAISY/HTyQoTUwQ94/s800/IMG_5665.JPG" /></a>

This was the day we realized how easily the Minsks fall over. The two feet of the center stand are about two inches apart, so if you even look at the thing wrong it'll fall down. Same goes for the side stand, which you can probably see in the above picture does not rake forward at all, so the slightest push on the bike from behind and it all goes toppling over.

We landed in a little town called Con Cuong. Found a great little hotel, and when the owner saw our passports he said "ohh, America, very good. Hockey, Obama, Hockey!" I didn't know we were such Hockey fanatics in America.

This is the view out of our little hotel room window
<a href="http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/ZyZRHa96RlI13pOXOIhhrg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="http://lh4.ggpht.com/_QMRLyAEclGA/TIj6aZb-qyI/AAAAAAAAISc/YBcOd9QvOeg/s800/IMG_4141.JPG" /></a>

Running out of time, have to leave for work. I'll do more soon!

Suqsuda 09-09-2010 01:24 PM

:clap

Indochine 09-09-2010 03:14 PM

Quote:

... the owner saw our passports he said "ohh, America, very good. Hockey, Obama, Hockey!" I didn't know we were such Hockey fanatics in America.
Americans? Canadians? All same same :lol3 to Viet, I guess.

OK, I'm subscribed. Love VN trips and especially food. Lots of food shots, please, and see if you can show us the "hammered chicken".

Will be doing similar trip in coming year. Ride on, brothers and sister.

Josh69 09-09-2010 03:29 PM

Great Minsks :)

:clap:clap:clap


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