Category Archives: Panorama

Yolla Bolly Wilderness 2014

For the second year in a row, I visited the Yolla Bolly Wilderness for my birthday in early June. The wilderness is located at the corners of Mendocino, Trinity and Tehama counties, and is a beautiful, pristine, high alpine location. I was accompanied by several close friends and my mother, and I spent a total of eight days hiking, between 6000 and 7500 feet. The wilderness was very dry, due to the low rainfall last winter, but cold mountain streams created vibrant green oases of grass and plants in some spots. Parts of the forest were burned in forest fires three years ago, which you can see in some of the photos. Many trees were dead, and parts of the trail were very hard to follow.

If you would like information about hiking in this amazing wilderness, please contact me. I took notes on my trip, and have a number of helpful suggestions.

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Photos: Namhsan to Hsipaw by Motorbike

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In the final days of my visit to Myanmar, I did a “motorbike trek” from Namhsan to Hsipaw. It’s route following small, poorly maintained dirt roads up and down mountains, through streams and mountain villages. It’s a popular trekking route for foreign tourists, but I was still smarting from a muscle strain from the Kalaw to Lake Inle trek I’d done a couple weeks earlier, so I opted to drive the route by motorbike instead of by foot.

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Photos: Bagan, Myanmar

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Photos: Kalaw and Trek to Inle Lake, Myanmar

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I spent a wonderful few days in the hill station town of Kalaw, cool and green at 1400 meters, in the mountainous Shan State of NE Myanmar.  Then I hiked for three days form Kalaw to Inle Lake, accompanied by four other male tourists, and our guide, a young local woman.  The trek was beautiful, and strenuous.  We saw amazing views, passed through villages with a variety of ethnic groups, and in the evening at yummy food and stayed in the homes of villagers.

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Photos: Cambodia Motorbike Gang

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I spent a week exploring Kep and Kampot by dirt bike with my friends Fredrik and Karen. We had a great time, cruising along dirt roads lining rice paddies, through small villages and visiting remote temples. We also spent a couple nights resting on beautiful, quiet Koh Tonsai. It was a great adventure, filled with wonderful interactions with locals, interesting food, mishaps with the bikes breaking down, and beautiful sites and vistas.

For the grand finale, we drove to the top of Bokor, leaving Kampot at 5:20AM, and arriving just as the sun crested the horizon.

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Photos: Bayon & Angkor Thom, Siem Reap, Cambodia

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Photos: Tonsai and Railay Beaches, Krabi, Thailand

Famous with rock climbers, the limestone cliffs around Tonsai and Railay Beaches are stunning, and the nearby Phra Nang Beach is gorgeous.  I enjoyed a short walk up and over the ridge, through the jungle, to go between Tonsai and Railay.  Tonsai is cheaper and more of a backpacker scene, while Railay is more of resort tourism.  Both have beginner to advanced climbing, with equipment and training provided.  I stayed at Andaman Resort (just a simple wooden bungalow with bathroom) for 400 baht a night, on Tonsai Beach.

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