I wanted to check out the roads to a track to Pramoy from Pailin and if I could get there easy, ride it. I also wanted to check out Phnom Sampeau and the Battambang surroundings.
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March 10th 2013 Sunday
Entered Cambodia at Poi Pet01. No problems and not much people. Spent the night in Sisonpon at Morakot guesthouse02. Was quoted $10 for an A/C room with fridge, WiFi, hot shower and TV. When I checked out the next day and was supposed to get change back for the $20 I paid with the day before, the price was $12 all of a sudden.
Had food at Red Chilli03.
When I drove back to the guesthouse my back tire was flat :-(
Noticed there was a tire shop04 across the street from the guest house. They patched my tube for $3, can't beat that.
Headed south towards Battambang. Checked the status of some roads going southwest towards Pailin. None were any good.
But 5 is just fine.
This is 157 going west. Looks like it may be be paved soon.
When close to Battambang I turned west towards a dam05 I don't know the name of.
After a while I ran into another road to the dam and it was paved.
Plenty of vendors around the dam.
I took the paved road back out to 57 and went north to Battambang.
Passed Phnom Sampeau06.
In Battambang I took this road south. I hoped it would be good all the way to the beginning07 of a track to Pramoy from Pailin. I don't know the name of this road but Google maps calls it 154 and it runs along Sangker River.
The road turns to good dirt and later turns to north-west. Not south as I hoped but I follow it.
It took me out to 57. I head south to try another road to the track.
I tried this paved road going south.
It turned to dirt and took me to this little bridge.
On the other side of the river I picked up this road east. It was not very smooth.
It T-boned into this road going north and south. At the south end of this road the track begins07. It was pretty bad with rocks sticking up and big potholes. I was here about 2 years ago and at that time they worked on some of these roads and I hoped some had been sealed providing easy access to the track. Apparently they were left to go to shit instead.
The road kept going north and was bad until it joined the good dirt road I rode earlier. Asphalt on the horizon! Wonderful after some time on bumpy shit roads.
Here it looked like they were trashing a whole mountain. Not very pretty.
Drove in to Battambang and checked in at Borey Battambang Lim Tie Heng08. $12 for an A/C room with fridge, TV, WiFi, hot shower and a bathtub. There are loads of guest houses and more hotels are being built.
Went to see the old French train station09.
The governor's house10.
Battambang Provincial Hall11.
Riverside Balcony restaurant12, supposed to be a cool spot. A sign told me it is closed on Mondays.
Went to eat at Wood House Restaurant13. The food was good and not expensive. "Lok Lak" with steamed rice, three beers, a soda pop and an ice cream kicked me back $6.50. They also got WiFi but it was down when I was there. Ice cold draught beer for $0.50.
March 12th 2013 Tuesday
I took the same 154 (Google) south with Phnom Banan14 on my mind.
I side tracked on this dirt road that was being fixed up.
It took me to the area of the Bamboo trains15 so I had a look and they are still in business.
Then I again aimed for Phnom Banan14. Rode the same fine dirt road back.
Back on 154 (Google) again.
Vendors at the bottom of Phnom Banan14. I got charged $3 to enter.
Stairs to the top.
Trees blocking the view.
Does it ever end.
More trees blocking the view.
Sturdy hand rails in Naga style.
Yet more trees blocking the view.
Then off to Phnom Sampeau6.
A statue in the making?
The road to the top.
The view again.
A stair leads down to a cave below the temple on top.
Then I went on to see the Killing Cave16. On the way was this French building used by the communists as a prison.
Crocodile mountain seen from behind the French building.
The Killing Cave16 used by the communists to kill school teachers, doctors and others.
People were pushed into the cave and their death through this opening.
Then back down. Phnom Banan14 seem from the road down.
I realized that I did not have any strength left after yesterday's bad roads and the stairs up to Phnom Banan14 so I started to head back and saved the track for another ride. Took the 57 back to Ban Pakkhad17 and Thailand.