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Solo Trip from Singapore to the Mae Hong Son Loop on a Harley-Davidson Ultra Limited


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Trip Report - Solo Trip from Singapore to the Mae Hong Son Loop on a Harley-Davidson FLHTK Ultra Limited

 

Friday, 1st June 2018 to Tuesday, 12th June 2018

 

Introduction - Why Mae Hong Son

So I have always heard about the Mae Hong Son Loop and have always wanted to ride up there to experience the famed 1864 curves. There were all sorts of stories about how beautiful it is and how it is a biker's paradise and that every biker should have a go at it once in his / her lifetime. Of course, there were also stories about how dangerous it is and how it is not for the faint-hearted. The opportunity arose for me to make this trip due to the confluence of several factors:

1) I have a long break from work (about 3 weeks) and I thought I would make the most of it;

2) The significant other is taking a trip to Germany and I have all the time to myself (we're also getting married in December so I thought this would be a good time for such a trip);

3) The service interval for my bike (every 8000km) falls in just nicely, so I only have to service the bike before the trip, and the next service would be when I returned from the trip;

4) I really missed riding long trips such as this; the last long solo ride I did was in 2012 when I rode from Singapore to Vietnam on a Honda Shadow Slasher 400cc (https://www.singaporebikes.com/forums/showthread.php/361869-Trip-Report-Solo-(mostly)-Ride-SG-MY-TH-KH-VN-14-05-12-31-05-12). Of course, in between this period I have taken other riding road trips in Australia and New Zealand, but on rented bikes. I really missed the silence and solitude riding for long hours for weeks with just my thoughts to myself.

5) I wanted to check out the new immigration buildings / processes at the Malaysia - Thai border. My trips to Vietnam, as well as other trips to Krabi and Phuket, have all yielded different experiences at the border and I thought that I should check out the new immigration buildings and the processes (especially the TM2 and TM3 forms) in place right now.

 

So with all these factors falling in place, I thought that now was the perfect time to make such a trip.

 

Introduction - MyBike

20617183_1419357364777938_5384983746239862610_o.jpg

Currently I only own one bike, a Harley-Davidson FLHTK Ultra Limited. This is obviously not the most suitable bike for such a journey as most people would accomplish the trip on an adventure bike such as a BMW R1200GSA or a KTM Super Adventure. And I almost nearly bought one, a 2013 BMW F700GS, just for the trip. However, the seller and I couldn't match our price expectations and so I decided to just take my own bike along. Anyway I have been riding this bike for the last 4 plus years and I am pretty familiar with the ins and outs of my motorcycle. I have also assembled a pretty comprehensive toolkit for my bike over the years and I am quite confident of its mechanical reliability. Of course, there are naysayers for such a trip. My colleagues at work thought I was crazy to undertake such a journey alone, and with such an expensive bike. My long-time mechanic advised me to fly up to Chiang Mai and rent a small bike there, so as to minimise losses if anything happened to the bike. There were also some people who told me that I would "suffer" at Mae Hong Son due to having to clutch in repeatedly and to throw the weight of the bike around all the curves (the dry weight of the bike is 398kg after all.)

 

Nonetheless, the stage was set and I was all ready to roll. Attached's a picture that the significant other created.

IMG_20180531_111514_639.jpg

My Rides:

 

020307-050408: Honda Phantom TA200 (FU9253X)

030508-170115: Honda Shadow Slasher (FV5149K)

010213-010415: Harley-Davidson FLSTC Heritage Softail Classic (FBC822E)

090313-121113: Honda Phantom TA200 (FU2004U)

310315-present: Harley-Davidson FLHTK Ultra Limited (FBJ-----)

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