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Old 01-26-2012, 05:21 PM   #10
Suqsuda OP
Secret Sharer
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Oddometer: 166
One of the riders was Vinh Vu, who owns a successful eco-touring and adventure travel company in Vietnam called Handspan Adventure Travel. He chose to ride a sidecar rig.

Morning ride on country roads for a couple hours along the banks of the Ma River.

Note the kids sitting almost on the road, need to keep an eye out.

At an intersection:

We joined the newly built Ho Chi Minh Highway and rode almost due south for much of the day. Beautiful road, almost no car or truck traffic. The road here is built over the original Ho Chi Minh Trail -- the leg of the trail from Hanoi south toward Mu Gia pass, where it crossed into Laos.

The pigs were alive and wriggling:

Stopped for a rest break and Mark had a quick smoke:

Stopped for lunch:

Ms. Linh set out greens and cold cuts and french bread for banh mi style sandwiches

Toward the end of the day we headed due east and took Route 1 to Vinh. I'm sure some of you on this forum have ridden Route 1. It was a madhouse of traffic, with big semi-trucks, buses, cars, scooters, ox-carts, tractors, bicycles etc. weaving and passing with inches to spare, and at a s mismatched pace with some vehicles fast and others crawling along. The safest way to ride it seemed to be to go faster than anyone else and to pass everyone. Otherwise the risk was in getting bumped from behind, or having people pass you and cut tight in front of you, maybe clipping your front tire and sending you down. Digby and Mark were bringing up the rear and came very close to getting wiped out when an oncoming semi-truck's trailer's rear tire exploded and shredded and the trailer swung into their lane like a pinball machine flipper. Digby got it on his helmet cam which we hooked up to the TV/VCR in the bar later that night to watch.

Even with the wide-angle fish eye lens that makes things look farther away, it looked scary close. Actually the ride required such sustained and intense concentration that the effect was strangely calming like some form of meditation.
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