Sawasdee Krub! Today, we, couple on tour, will take you to go for another trekking trip as we were very happy with the previous trip in Khao Luang Sukhothai. We are going to find a big waterfall in a heart shape hidden inside the giant forest of Tak Province. This waterfall is called "Pitugro or Pe To Lo Su." It also has some other names called by different people. Moreover, you have to walk for about 20 kilometers to get to this waterfall through the forest. We will also hike up Doi Ma Muang Sam Muen. We are 8 people in total on this trip. The expenses are around 3,000 THB. Two-night stay is at Kam Singha Homestay and the trip is from 12 - 14 August. Strong wind, fog, and rainstorm await. So let's see how much fun this trip is and how impressive the Sherpas from Ban Kui Loe To are!
Rough Travel Plan
Leave Bangkok on the night of 11th August, arrive at Kam Singha Homestay around 5 AM on 12th August, ride the pickup truck to Ban Kui Loe To before start trekking, walk through the forest, arrive at Pitugro Waterfall, and set up a camp at the foot of Doi Ma Muang Sam Muen
13th August: Hike up Doi Ma Muang Sam Muen and come back down, walk back to Ban Kui Loe To, and return to Kam Singha Homestay
14th August: Wake up early to see the sea of mist at Doi Hua Mod, return to Bangkok but stop at Ban Kru Sun, Umpium Refugee Camp, Rocha Cafe in Phop Phra, Noodles Bandin in Mae Sot, and Bangkok Bicentennial Bridge
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You may want to watch this overview video before going through this travel blog.
All photos are taken by Nikon D5300 18-140, and GoPro HERO4 Silver
We, 8 people traveling with 3 cars, the first two cars leave from Bangkok in the afternoon. One of them will head to Kam Singha Homestay (arrive there around 11 PM) while another one will head to Mae Sot. I won't take my car with me, I will join one of my friends because we can save more money this way. My friend and I depart from Bangkok at 6 PM and as it is a long weekend, the traffic is completely crazy. We have ended up arriving at Mae Sot after midnight. My friend comes to Mae Sot to pick his girlfriend up before continuing to Umphang with other roughly 1,219 turns. The road to Umphang is pretty narrow and there are many cows lying down in the middle of the road so you need to be very careful. I help my friend look over the road for a while before falling asleep. I woke up later and have found out that we have already arrived at Kam Singha Homestay. hahaha I normally take a responsibility of driving but not this time so I dozed off. We arrive at Kam Singha Homestay around 5 AM. We settle down directly before going for a short nap. We woke up for breakfast once again at 8 AM.
We choose the package that will stay overnight in the forest for only one night and another night here. The package costs 2,200 THB per person with 6 meals included. However, the Uncle and Auntie owners are so kind, they offer us this breakfast for complementary. Therefore, we have got 7 meals included in total and this is very impressive. The package is totally worth it and the service is great.
There is also Clear Soup apart from these and they are all refillable. This is so good.
We are ready to start the day after filling up our stomach and finishing all the morning routines. This is the pickup truck we need to spend time on for the next one hour before starting to trek from Ban Kui Loe To.
The journey gets started. The road is still in a good shape at the beginning.
Then it is like this most of the time later.
The ride is pretty bouncy and the rain pours down once in a while along the way.
I am surprised that there are so many people here when we arrive at the entrance to Ban Kui Loe To. They are all actually the Sherpas. There are many of them because it is a long weekend, many tourists will come here for trekking. And can you spot the raindrop on the photo below? The rain starts pouring down since the beginning of the trip.
I take photos here and there and have no clue that these three Sherpas are actually our Sherpas. So, they will take care of us throughout the trip and also provide us more insightful story about Ban Kui Loe To and their people (hill tribe). The one holding the hat is P' Jor Klee, P' Wanchai is wearing black T-shirt, and I don't know the name of the other one as he can't speak Thai at all. The other guy in the back is taking car of another group of tourists.
It is only 200 meters further in where the walk begins and the rain suddenly stops.
We start our trekking around 10.40 AM and we mark this beginning with a group photo shot. By the way, you need to take care of your own belonging for a 2,200-THB package. The Sherpas will take care only food, tent, and sleeping bag. Therefore, I recommend you to bring only what necessary along because it is going to be a long walk. You should also wear a pair of good mountain shoes. My one costs me only 120 THB and it is so good. I already told you how good it is from my previous trip in Khao Luang. This pair of shoes doesn't fail me either this time, I fell down only one time the entire trip and it helps me to walk easily as well.
I am totally full of energy but it starts to rain already after walking for only 200 meters. The rain happens to pour down and stop and pour down and stop like this the whole time so rain jacket is necessary. I guess I have to accept the fact that it is the monsoon season and I choose to come here during this time.
We walk in the stream which is not deep.
Then the next part of the trail is muddy like this. This muddy trail sucks your feet badly so it is quite energy consuming. hahaha I find it fun somehow because I can't find something like this near my house to play with.
Then we are back in the stream. The weather condition stays the same so I use only my GoPro camera to take the video then capture it for photos.
The first part of the trail is not steep but muddy. You need to use a lot of energy in walking as the mud is thick enough to suck your shoes.
One good thing about trekking in the rain is that it is not hot and you won't feel thirsty often.
The trail is also through the cornfield and rice field.
We need to cross the river as well and it happens that we can't cross this river tomorrow because it is too deep. We need to walk further and cross it on the bamboo bridge instead.
It is already noontime so we stop for lunch by a small waterfall.
My camera's lens starts to be fogged because of the rain. For lunch, we have Stir-fried Pork with Holy Basil and Fried Egg served on banana's leaves. It is in a big portion and very delicious or I am too hungry. hahaha
We stop for lunch only 20 minutes before continuing the walk. The trail from now on will be difficult through the rain forest and up and down the mountains. People stop talking, as we need to keep walking. Then we stop for a short break once again after a long while at this waterfall.
I am so tired already.
We are all wet but we keep smiling. This waterfall also makes us very refreshing.
We continue to walk and it is even harder this time. The trail is up and down the hill nonstop. I have no clue when we will arrive at our destination. We also take numbers of breaks all along.
Then we have finally arrived at the waterfall in a heart shape that we have been searching for. I am totally tired to get here, as it has been 3.5-hour walk. The waterfall is very pretty and gigantic. We are also lucky that the rain stops. Therefore, I use my professional camera in taking photos. However, the rain starts to pour down heavily once again after only 10 minutes after we arrive.
See! How gigantic this waterfall is!
Once here, we don't forget to take a photo of us in our signature pose.
Like I said, we don't have that much time in admiring this grand beauty. The rain pours down heavily as you can see. Anyway, I feel lucky enough to have some nice photos with no rain.
It will be another 45-minute walk to get to the camping site from here. The rain is still very heavy even until we reach the site. It is not easy for the Sherpas to build up the shelter under this bad weather condition. I am scared as well because I have never experienced such a rainstorm for hours in the forest like this. Not long later, Uncle Kham Singha arrives with a big group of people. He told us to not worry, as the rain will stop soon while handing out his mango pickle to us. Guess what! His mango pickle is so good. We will ask for more when we return to Kam Singha Homestay from Untie owner as Uncle Kham Singha suggested. hahaha
Moreover, Uncle Kham Singha offers us a drink. He said, "This specialty will keep you warm in the weather like this." The drink tastes good and we love it. I actually bought some local alcoholic drink earlier as well but the taste can't be compared to Uncle Kham Singha's one.
The rain stops around 5 PM as same as Uncle Kham Singha said. Uncle Kham Singha and the Sherpas don't hesitate to set up the shelter for us. Then we start to put up the tents which is not easy as the ground is very wet. hahaha
The Sherpas serve us dinner in the early evening. There are many kinds of foods and they are all delicious. Then it rains once again while we are eating.
We then sit in a circle after dinner before starting to chitchat and enjoying the drink. Once it gets dark, all the girls excuse themselves to go to sleep first as their legs are tired. The Sherpas come to join us instead and the fun begins. They offer us their own recipe drinks and tell us this and that. It is nice to know them more from different perspective. They told us that they used to work in Bangkok as well as Rayong. The earning was pretty impressive but the work was boring so they decided to come back home after a few years. They rather live a simple life here where money doesn't mean much. "Those who are rich here are verified by numbers of cows they own", P' Jor Klee said. I guess that is the reason why there are cows everywhere even on the road. He also said that, "There is no major conflict within the village and teenagers don't likely to go out at night." In the case that there are two guys falling in love with the same girl, they will talk it out and let the girl decides. Well, there are many more stories we learn from them and they are all fun. We are so impressed with the way they live. They even invite us to their houses tomorrow or spend a night. Sadly that we need to return to our reserved homestay where our cars are. We have ended up going to sleep around 10 PM in the end.
We sleep in a proper tent but they sleep here where we ate earlier. They are very tough as it is not comfortable at all and the rain even makes it worse at night. I sleep in a sleeping bag in a tent and my back is already wet because of the rain makes the ground wet but where all the Sherpas have to sleep on is just a plastic mat.
We slept so well and woke up with the view like this.
Uncle Kham Singha and the Sherpas are preparing breakfast for us.
They have hot water for you in case you would like to have some coffee. You don't have to do like this guy does.
Well, I guess it is not challenging to prepare some coffee as usual since we are in the forest. So he prepares the coffee with the candles like this. hahaha
Luckily that the water is finally boiling but that requires around half dozen of the candles. So maybe this is not a good idea for next time. hahaha
Breakfast is done and we need to get prepared before hiking to Doi Ma Muang Sam Muen. One of the things we need to do this morning is to do number two. Doing number two is quite important and my time is always in the early morning.
I shall call it an experience, doing number two up in the mountain especially in the rain. I need to use the rain jacket covering my head while doing that. In addition, this task is challenging. You have to make sure that you don't make a mess on the bamboo all the time to keep it clean for the next person. It can be also very horrified looking down below. Anyway, I bet it would be clearer to you when you experience it yourself.
We are ready now so let's get the day started! We have decided to hike until the second point where there are the signal and the national flag as of the conversation with P' Jor Klee last night.
The trail from the camping site up there is very steep and some part of it is right next to the cliff. It is a pity though that I can't use my professional camera because of the rain. That's why I use only GoPro camera. The view from the edge of the cliff is totally fantastic with the fog, mountains, and waterfall.
We have finally reached the first point. We were told that this is nothing, there is still long way to go to the second point. Furthermore, we are facing with a bad rainstorm right now and it is very scary.
You can see how bad the rainstorm is from the video below. Luckily that it is not a thunderstorm. Guess what! The fog comes and covers the waterfall all in a sudden. On the other hand, we were told that the trail to the second point is dangerous and it is even more dangerous when it is raining like this. Therefore, we all have decided to stop right here. We think we can't see anything anyway in this kind of weather and the second point is similar to this one anyway as we have heard.
We are very happy, as this point is already amazing. The wind is very strong so I have decided to take off my rain jacket and it is kind of refreshing cold.
It is also very pretty on our way down with a lot of fog. We are also lucky that we are the first group up here so we can take photos freely. We walk pass many people who are on the way up to Doi Ma Muang Sam Muen but the rainstorm gets even worse this time.
We are back at the camping site and we will hike back down directly after breakfast. The breakfast has not been fully prepared so we ask for only the Fried Chicken that has been cooked already and instant noodle. Then the Sherpas take us to another way down which is totally steep. I feel thankful that we didn't hike up this way like the other group as hiking down is much easier. This way won't pass the waterfall in a heart shape though.
We are back down at the cornfield. The rain stops so it is a good time for a photo shot.
All the girls
Then my camera's lens starts to be fogged again. hahaha
We have finally made it back to the base camp. It is already 1 PM so we will have a simple lunch here with instant noodle. The noodle is hot which is perfect for a cold weather like this.
Last but not least, we are officially back down from the mountains. It has been such a memorable trekking experience and we won't forget about it. However, this is not the end of the trip. We will go to Ban Kui Loe To as P' Jor Klee suggested that it is a must to visit.
It is not far from the base camp to get to Ban Kui Loe To. There is no phone signal here so in case you would like to call someone, you need to ask from the village chief.
This is the house of P' Jor Klee. He invites us in his house but we are afraid that we will make a mess because our clothes are dirty. P' Jor Klee said, "There is no problem, come on in!"
We meet his wife and she is so kind to offer us a meal. We are full so she let us try her fish instead and it is delicious. P' Jor Klee said, "You are always welcome here and you can even stay overnight" which we are so pleased to know that.
Moreover, there is a charming bridge over a beautiful stream. I guess many of you have never seen it before.
"I shouldn't come with them, it is so tough and totally tiring", she thinks. hahaha Of course not, everybody is very happy and love this trip.
A local life
It is time to say goodbye to P' Jor Klee and Ban Kui Loe To. I have got to say that I have so many good memories here. They can't be easily written into words, you better come and experience it yourself.
We arrive back at Kam Singha Homestay and we will go for a shower directly. Once we are done, it is the same time that all foods are ready to be served and this meal is as good as usual.
We spend time talking until midnight and it is still raining. However, today is different as we will have a comfortable bed to sleep in.
The alarm goes off at 5 AM but it is still raining so we decide to sleep more. We woke up around 5.25 AM as the rain stops. We will go to Doi Hua Mod with the same pickup truck and will head to the kilometer marker 13 firstly.
From there, we need to walk up a little bit. The sea of mist is pretty far and the rain starts to pour down again.
We walk back down and we will go to the kilometer marker 8 now.
I don't think we will see the sun this morning. Luckily that at least there are some light fogs.
There are also some seas of mists but they stay separately.
We feel refreshing for just staring at it.
Let's catch some pokemons in the atmosphere like this!
Let's stay in trend! Pikachu Pikachu! Eiei There are many pokemons up here. I have caught four of them in just a short time.
Then the sea of mist starts to get better. Even though it is not a whole big one, it is still beautiful.
We are back at the homestay and will have breakfast right away. Boiled Rice is served as breakfast today. Then we pack and get ready to ride back to Bangkok. We say goodbye to Auntie Owner and Kam Singha Homestay's staff. They have treated us so well and we are so impressed and it is not expensive either to stay here. Therefore, I can say it is totally worth it. I think I will stay here again if I come back to Tak for Thi Lo Su Waterfall.
We depart from Kam Singha Homestay around 9 AM and our first stop will be at Ban Kru Sun in Umphang where we should,'t miss.
Ban Kru Sun is a souvenir shop as well as a cafe. There are numbers of interesting corners for photo shooting but the rain keeps pouring down.
There are a variety of souvenirs for you to buy back but I have no clue what I shall buy. I have ended up getting a postcard for my mom. We suppose to be with our moms these days actually as it is a mother's day holiday. hahaha
Mom, please wait a bit for my postcard!
We left Ban Kru Sun and will take a photo with the kilometer marker for a bit before leaving Umphang. Can you spot how dirty our cars are by the way?
This is the pure beauty of the sky land.
It is time for us to drive through another 1,219 turns. Even though we are on this road in the daytime, it is still not easy. The main reason is that it is very foggy. Therefore, I have found that it is easier to drive on this road at night because you can spot the light of the cars that are coming on the other side of the road better.
Look! How foggy it is! I don't even know where we stop for the toilet.
The mosses are everywhere and they are very green.
I thought that he is Mario.
Then we stop at Umpium Refugee Camp where the rain has finally stopped.
This is so pretty.
She wears this hat to blend in with the locals. hahaha
There is a big rest area not far from Umpium Refugee Camp. We will stop there for some foods such as instant noodle, dumplings, and steamed stuff buns. Guess what! It starts to rain again and it is very heavy this time. Oh no! There is always rain this entire trip.
We left the rest area and have found that it is even foggier now plus it is raining. The sighting is limited to only around 50-meter far, hence; we drive slowly. After all the fog, the sky is clear again. hahaha The view on both sides of the road is amazing but we can't stop the car and go down to take photos because the road is very narrow. I bet we will stop very often if we ride the motorbike.
Luckily that there is no more rain and it is sunny when we arrive in Phop Phra and we are here at Rocha Cafe.
I have found a beetle in the flower garden in front of the cafe.
This cafe has such a nice ambiance with a great view.
There are so many attractive corners for you to take photos.
Let's have a look at their bakery and drinks! I have got to tell you that they all look nice and taste pretty good.
Then it is time to continue our journey.
We were told to stop at this restaurant, Noodles Bandin, when in Mae Sot. Noodles Bandin offers a wide range of dishes.
Every dish looks yummy and this big bowl of noodle is only 50 THB.
We are very hungry so each of us has two bowls. The noodle is delicious and I highly recommend.
After dropping off one friend in Mae Sot, we will drive back to Bangkok but will stop wherever it is interesting along the way. The first stop is at this Maesot View where all the superheroes are gathered.
There are so many superheroes here but I guess that the owner loves Spider-man as there are so many of them.
Here comes the Godzilla.
After we left Mae Sot, the rain starts to pour down again with very strong wind. There are also numbers of landslides along the way. Then it stops once we arrive in Mueang Tak.
We end this trip with a visit to this hanging bridge of Mueang Tak in the late afternoon.
The trip ends beautifully and I feel as if I was in different world since there is no more rain. We faced with rain and wind earlier the whole time but there is nothing from Mueang Tak to Bangkok. I guess it is true that the weather is so unpredictable.
We have finally arrived back at home around midnight.
Tour package for 3 days and 2 nights (1 night camping and 1 night at the homestay) with 7 meals included: 2,200 THB per person
LPG Gas and Petroleum, the car that I am with the whole time costs less than 2,000 THB per person
Foods and drinks: I spent around 3,000 THB
I would say that this trip is totally good vale for money.
I have officially completed another trip. This trip has been nothing but memorable full with stories for the whole 3 days. I don't think I can tell everything so you better go and experience it yourself. I know that some of you might not like to travel this way but I guess many of you love the charm of the adventurous trip like this. For me, I feel totally happy with this trip even I am super tired. I can guarantee that this kind of experience is not easy to find.
We, couple on tour, will see you again next time! I will take you to another waterfall again so please stay tuned to learn where it would be!