The route: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/162401643
After 3 and a bit hours of riding into a hefty headwind with the only view being mass deforestation and itinerant migrants working on hastily erected shacks, we were less than enthusiastic about the 1000m climb to Sen Monorom, Cambodia’s answer to the Scottish Highlands. Here, temperatures dive to a Baltic 20degrees Celsius overnight, and skiwear is commonly sported by moto-drivers. At the foot of the climb, and after a lot of ‘discussion’ with the head honcho of the local taxi cartel, the tandem was strapped to the back of an only slightly overloaded minibus and we had a far easier ride up the mountain than pedal power would have afforded us.
Sen Monorom is indeed a breezy breath of fresh air (and not yet deforested totally), and having checked into the Nature Lodge, we set off to explore the town. Once the now obligatory tandem rides for all and sundry were out of the way, we planned our two days in the hills. Hiking didn’t really appeal – we wanted motorbikes and elephants. Activities booked, we had a romantic candlelit meal in a Khmer restaurant (there was a power cut) and then joined the town for a Leo Beer-sponsored concert.
The live music was inconsequential; this bash was all about the beer, and lots of it. Strangely reminiscent of a festival in Wales (windy, chilly, boozy and with no decent food options), we were adopted by a group of local lads, one of whol was particularly fond of Emma – his hand only strayed from her knee in order to explore other erogenous zones…