RSS Feed

R@SKLS IN SOUTHERN THAILAND: DAY 3

 

Day 3 Hat Yai

14 of us would be riding to Hat Yai on Day 3.

Tomoe and Tommy were already back in KL.  TH had hopped into a taxi to Hat Yai after the SICR on Day 2.  Luanne, Leonard, and Kiam Woon would be driving back to KL.  Ralf and Voon Kiat would be riding back to Padang Besar, and then driving to Penang to catch their flight to Hong Kong.

Some of the Hat Yai bound R@SKLs were awake when it stopped raining at 6.30am.  WhatsApp messages started pinging around the group.  There was a common thought.  It would be nice to ride for as long as possible before it started raining again.

Those who were awake came down early to breakfast.  We decided to start cycling to Hat Yai at 8.00am, instead of the previously agreed 9.30am.  We then had to wake up the rest, so that they could get ready in time.  We got hold everyone but Arthur, who was not answering his mobile.

Day 3 Banner

Arthur appeared at breakfast at about 7.45am.  It had started raining again by then.  We eventually got going at 8.30am.  We left Arthur to take his time over his coffee, and to ride in the support van to Hat Yai.

We had our first flat tire of the day within 12km / 7.5mi of heading out into the rain.  It wouldn’t be the last.

Day 3 1st Flat Tire Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

The clouds teased us by looking like they would blow away and leave us riding under clear skies, only for more rain clouds to appear above us.

Day 3 Singing In The Rain Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 To Hat Yai Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Another stop to attend to a flat tire meant that it took us 1 hour and 20 minutes to cover 28km / 17mi.  All that stopping and starting wore us out.  We needed a rest and a snack.

Day 3 Pit Stop 4 Hsing C Pai

Photograph courtesy of Hsing C Pai

Day 3 Pit Stop 2 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 Pit Stop 1 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

The weather showed no sign of improving.  If anything, it looked like we would ride into heavier rain as we left the Krua Chaiyasit restaurant.

Day 3 Still Raining Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Flat tire number 3 came after 40km / 25mi of wet riding.  That presented an opportunity to grab a 100 Plus out of the support van.

Day 3 3rd Flat Tire Stop Lee Heng Keng

Photograph courtesy of Lee Heng Keng

While we were dealing with punctures, Ralf and Voon Kiat were riding through the border crossing on their way back to Padang Besar.

Day 3 Wang Kelian 2 Lai Voon Kiat

Photograph courtesy of Lai Voon Kiat

Day 3 Wang Kelian 1 Lai Voon Kiat

Photograph courtesy of Lai Voon Kiat

With Luanne, Leonard and Kiam Woon following along in Kiam Woon’s van.

Day 3 Wang Kelian Luanne Sieh

Photograph courtesy of Luanne Sieh

Ralf and Voon Kiat had the harder ride on this day.  They had to get over the Wang Kelian climb.

Our ride to Hat Yai was a leisurely one.  By 12.30pm we had covered 60km / 37mi.  That is about 15km / 9mi per hour.

So we didn’t need a rest, but we did need lunch and a bathroom.

The Transformer restaurant was a quirky place, decorated with vintage scooters, motorcycles, licence plates, etc.

Day 3 Conlax Lunch 4 Marvin Tan

Photograph courtesy of Marvin Tan

Day 3 Conlax Lunch 5 Lee Heng Keng

Photograph courtesy of Lee Heng Keng

The restaurant obviously gets its name from this sculpture at the entrance.

Day 3 Conlax Lunch 1 Lee Heng Keng

Photograph courtesy of Lee Heng Keng

After lunch we decided to skip a visit to Songkhla Lake, and to take the shorter, more direct route into Hat Yai.  In case you are wondering, it was still drizzling.

Day 3 On The Road 5 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 On The Road 4 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 On The Road 3 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 On The Road 2 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

Day 3 On The Road 1 Arthur Ang

Photograph courtesy of Arthur Ang

The rain got heavier as we rode along Phet Kasem Road for 35km / 22mi.  The road surface was poor in places, so we were all glad to hit the outskirts of Hat Yai.

Day 3 Entering Hat Yai 2 Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

At that point we needed help negotiating the last few kilometers to The Bed Hotel in Hat Yai.  Arthur was doing sterling service as our Chief Support Officer, working with the driver to guide us along the busy city streets.

Day 3 Chief Support Officer Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

Day 3 Rolling Into Hat Yai Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

Despite the best efforts of the van driver, in admittedly chaotic traffic, we had a mixup in directions.  I am embarrassed that I lost my cool at that point.

While I thought we were lost, we were in fact meters away from our hotel,  So all ended well.

Day 3 The Bed

The first thing we had to do upon arriving at the hotel was to rinse ourselves and our bikes off.  We had ridden every kilometer over the three days in the rain, but the roads on Day 3 were particularly sandy.  We were covered in grit.

Day 3 Washing Down 2 Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

Day 3 Washing Down Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

While everyone else was playing with the hose, Pai and I dripped all over the lobby floor as we checked the group into the hotel.  The staff were unfazed.  Someone got a mop and cleaned up behind us.  No fuss at all.

Day 3 Dripping at Hotel Reception Johan S

Photograph courtesy of Johan Sopiee

We had some time to burn before dinner.  It was still raining, so we got the staff to open the hotel bar for us.  TH supplied the drinks, and tunes via his Bluetooth speaker, and the group provided the high spirits and laughter.

Day 3 Drinks TH Lim

Photograph courtesy of TH Lim

The rain was still coming down at dinner time.  So plans to go farther afield for food were shelved in favour of going to the food court across the road from the hotel.  It was a good choice.  The fried chicken was excellent, as were the oyster omelettes, grilled vegetables, steamed fish, and multiple packs of mango sticky rice.

Day 3 Dinner TH Lim

Photograph courtesy of TH Lim

At the end of Day 3 we had another 97km / 60mi in the bag.

Day 3 Route

Map courtesy of Ride with GPS

It had been a relaxed ride, which is what we needed after the century ride the previous day.  We didn’t have a deadline to meet, so we could take our time.

That wouldn’t be the case on Day 4.  We would have a train to catch.

 

But first . . .

Day 3 Time to Sleep

Graphic courtesy of superlife.com

About alchemyrider

I left Malaysia in 2008 as a non-cyclist. I am back home now with two road bikes and all the paraphernalia that goes with being addicted to cycling.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: