Kayaking is not for me.

Trip Start Sep 08, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Lao Peoples Dem Rep  ,
Friday, October 23, 2009

Again, I've to write in the past tense but from now on our updates should be more frequent.  

So we decided to mix it up a bit and instead of busing it to the 4000 islands, aptly named as it is a group of islands in the middle of the Mekong at the border with Cambodia, we chose to kayak there. Yep kayak. Great idea at the start!! We left Pakse in the morning and got a bus just 2 hours down the road to the river. The first day was an 'easy' one apparently. Me and Niall were shocked to find that our kayak was an inflatable - weird we thought. Easy we thought too. Difficult was the reality. 

Problem was Niall was the 'captain' (sat at the back) and I was the team - which meant Niall steered and I was the power at the front. But problem is I like to control and Niall likes to sit up.  The kayak just wouldn't allow for that and our first day was peppered with arguments and bitching.  Not to worry. We got to the first island about 6 hours and 12 km later, had a beer and got on with it.

Because of our relative  but not complete success the first day, we decided to change positions for the next day. Not as long and should be OK - we thought. This trip was full of thoughts!!! Anyway, I couldn't steer to save my life and Niall kept having to help which infuriated me more cos I couldn't do from the back what Niall wasn't meant to be able to do from the front.  But still we got down the river without capsizing. Problem is, I didn't want to steer anymore and Niall really couldn't sit comfortably at the back to do a proper job.

But we muddled on through and day 3 was all about the rapids. So we just had to make it work. Niall at the back, me at the front, working our backsides off, we made it to the finish and rightly or wrongly felt quite happy with ourselves!!

So through the few days we saw some beautiful scenery (pix attached) stayed in some very remote places. The first night was a guest house - really lovely. Wooden, mozzie net, cold water - all we needed. Second was a home stay but really nothing to write home about. Niall had a great time playing foot volley with the local lads and a bamboo ball while I watched and had some sunset beers. 

We cycled on the island (that hurt!!) and generally had some craic and the third night we stayed on Don Det, the 'party' island. Not much partying when we were there but good craic none the less.  This island only had 4 hours of electricity so our torches came in handy when we went walking to watch the sun set and then walking back to the hotel after dinner.

All in all a nice trip, hard work but nice. But by no means the highlight so far. The next day we took a boat and bus to the Cambodian border, where things were just about to get much better!!!




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Scott F on

I love your info about the kayaking, I can just imagine what you were saying to each other! I laughed out loud =)

finn on

hee hee i agree scott - i bet those beers went down really well !!! ahh lads i'll hv to bring u down the boyne :) much easier by the sounds of it and u get ur own boat and sit upright the whole time - as long as u stay in the boat that is !!

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