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ภูกระดึง

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ภูกระดึง

Postby Tgeezer » Wed Dec 16, 2015 1:54 am

Just back from this 'once in a lifetime' experience visit for the second time! My thigh muscles still ache from the descent which in some ways was more arduous than the ascent, I still ache and I consider(ed) myself reasonably fit.
I feel that the parks department are not adequately describing the character of the experience. If anybody is contemplating a trip to this place in เลย I have information which may help to make your visit more comfortable or allow you to make an informed decision on going.
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Re: ภูกระดึง

Postby Pirin » Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:09 am

Tgeezer wrote:Just back from this 'once in a lifetime' experience visit for the second time! My thigh muscles still ache from the descent which in some ways was more arduous than the ascent, I still ache and I consider(ed) myself reasonably fit.
I feel that the parks department are not adequately describing the character of the experience. If anybody is contemplating a trip to this place in เลย I have information which may help to make your visit more comfortable or allow you to make an informed decision on going.


You do agree that going up ภูกระดึง is not much different from walking long distance in the pleasantly shady area, don't you?
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Re: ภูกระดึง

Postby Tgeezer » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:41 am

Pirin wrote:
Tgeezer wrote:Just back from this 'once in a lifetime' experience visit for the second time! My thigh muscles still ache from the descent which in some ways was more arduous than the ascent, I still ache and I consider(ed) myself reasonably fit.
I feel that the parks department are not adequately describing the character of the experience. If anybody is contemplating a trip to this place in เลย I have information which may help to make your visit more comfortable or allow you to make an informed decision on going.


You do agree that going up ภูกระดึง is not much different from walking long distance in the pleasantly shady area, don't you?


I most definitely do not agree with that statement Pirin!
Although there are some places which have been prepared with handrails and what appears to be concrete, this is where the path zig zags because the direct route is rock climbing without ropes, the slope is still about 30' for which many people require the handrail. Several places have steps which indicates a slope of about 45' and the last part has ladders for the final thirty odd feet to the summit. I would estimate that this human intervention has taken place on less than half of the route the remainder consists of a mixture of rocks and sandy soil which has to be scrambled up and down . There are eight rest stops (ซำ) where it is possible to take a pleasant walk in a shady area of about fifty yards each. I would not recommend it, but some people carried their own haversacks and bags, in spite of there being porters (ลูกหาบ)who charge 30 Baht per kilo. Unencumbered by bags I broke a sweat in both directions. En-route one needs to consider the porters and give them priority since they are carrying heavy weights. Traffic is in both directions so in places one finds oneself, having given way, on a route not of one's choosing involving a longer 'lift' or 'drop' than can be accomplished with ease. The ascent is 5.5 KM and the vertical elevation 1200 meters.
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Re: ภูกระดึง

Postby Pirin » Thu Dec 17, 2015 1:36 pm

My fourth trip to ภูกระดึง was in 1995; I was rather strong then.

Because I went up the mountain with friends, I was too busy all along the way up -- chatting, taking photos, and taking care of some friends -- to know that the long trail was rough.
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Re: ภูกระดึง

Postby Tgeezer » Fri Dec 18, 2015 12:18 am

Pirin wrote:My fourth trip to ภูกระดึง was in 1995; I was rather strong then.

Because I went up the mountain with friends, I was too busy all along the way up -- chatting, taking photos, and taking care of some friends -- to know that the long trail was rough.


Good heavens Pirin that is surprising, I suppose I am seeing it from the perspective of an old man way past his prime physically and at last admitting it. My friends would probably agree with you since the eldest is more than twenty years my junior and their hobby is a running club. It is also possible that the pain in my leg coulours my opinion, it could well be from only a few incidents of heavy landing on the descent which with more care could have been avoided.
There is a gulf between my friend and I in culture as well as age and fitness; for me there are journeys, for them there is only ไปเที่ยว. A journey of five hundred KM takes eleven hours with food stops, temple visits, and the like. I must say though that they did approach ภูกระดึง as a time trial the first time and it took only two hours with the result that we had to wait hours for our bags and accommodation at the top, whereas this time we started up much later and took breaks at the ซำ. This time for them, like you, it may have been more ไปเที่ยว than การปีน, but not for me!
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