Koh Chang - Not Gone Yet!
Boulders & Water Pipes In River
Chillaxing! (A cross between chilling and relaxing, whatever, mostly involved being horizontal by the pool).
Went into WSB for dinner again, this time by motorbike (hired another one this evening from the hotel). After my disappointment with the fish last night I thought I'd try a homemade burger from Buffalo Bill’s restaurant just to see what I was missing. Oh dear, quite a lot it seems, the burger was delicious especially the salad that came with it (see pic), however I did leave most of the chips as I was stuffed.
Then went over the road to see a live band who had a permanent guest spot at the Sabuy Bar. Not much cop I’m afraid so left after one beer especially when they started doing requests for Russian songs!!
Decided to do a 5km trek through the jungle past a waterfall that I’d read about on the website www.iamkohchang.com written by an English guy, very good site, I’m using it as my bible for Koh Chang.
Eventually after a lot of hard work I reached the top of the waterfall, where according to the guide from the website you have to find some tree vines by the side of the waterfall and lower yourself down until you reach a rope about halfway down, then use that to get down the rest of the way.
Well apart from being a near vertical 30m slope (the guide reckons 20m but I’m sure it’s nearer 30m), it was wet and slippery and overgrown with trees and bushes. I thought of giving up at that point but the thought of going back up that riverbed made me at least give it a try, although the consequence of failure didn’t bear thinking about, I’ve never been good with heights. I found the vines described in the website although to get to them involved some dicey moments clinging onto less substantial shrubs while slithering around and over some other undergrowth. Then it was a case of literally abseiling using the vines with no footholds or level surfaces to step on at times, all without the benefit of a safety rope. The vines then came to an end and I found the top of the rope which looked as if it had seen better days.
More abseiling down slippery near vertical surfaces until I reached the end of the rope, unfortunately I wasn’t at the bottom yet!! Luckily there was a fallen tree that you could climb onto and then lower yourself from that the last few feet. Looking back I later saw another rope attached to the rock on the left hand side which I could have used, but it wasn’t very visible as you made your way down. Phew, I was just glad to have made it down in one piece, if I’d have known what it was like I wouldn’t have attempted it, especially not with my dodgy arm (which is rapidly improving now).
The web guide now suggests taking a well earned dip in the pool at the bottom of the waterfall, but as it was covered by a scummy looking film.
I passed on that option, despite by now dripping in sweat. More wading through murky water and scrabbling on all fours over boulders to get further down the river until a path became apparent on the left bank, although it was barely wider than your foot at times and snaked steeply up and down over slippery tree roots and rocks. Eventually the path opened up and led out of the jungle and into the daylight, time to put the shorts back on! The rest of the trail was quite uneventful and I got back to the start about two and half hours after I had left, tired but relieved.
Stopped off at restaurant for a drink and some Som Tam (Thai spicy papaya salad), you specify how spicy you want it when they ask you how many chillies you want in it. I wimped out and had just the one, plenty hot enough for me!
On the way back to the hotel I saw the aftermath of a bike accident, a big western bloke lying on the ground surrounded by his mates obviously in some pain, and his motorbike crashed into the Armco by the side of the road. There was already quite a crowd around as I passed by so I didn’t stop to gawp, a couple of minutes later I passed the ambulance going in the opposite direction to the scene of the crash.
The afternoon was spent chillaxing again, well deserved after my earlier trials. Got a bit of a dodgy tummy today so skipping dinner tonight as I’ve booked myself on a sailing cruise for tomorrow and as it’s an all day affair don’t want any problems!