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Mondulkiri : Sen Monorom - failed Bou Sra attempt

CAMBODIA | Friday, 30 March 2012 | Views [1289] | Comments [2]

Arrived late and thus in the dark due to a broken down bus that was replaced after only an hour an half wait (I was expecting about 4-6 hours, and was already crafting a bow & arrow with my Swiss Army knife and some wood and the elastic from some undersized underwear).  So my guesthouse choices were limited in the dark as ones I wanted to check out where somewhere off in the dark past the barking dogs...  

So stayed at Holiday Guesthouse through lack of other options, but the guide (who worked out of there) Prekachear (?) could speak English and said I could downgrade from the $8 double to the $5 single the next day.  And recommended that I hire a motorbike the next day and gave me a "map". Room smelled of something weird, or stale, so I opened the windows and went to eat at a mansion up the road, with suprisingly cheap food. 

then it was back to the sad ballads as per usual...  I wonder if the band just wanna break out sometimes and play, rock, or ANYTHING else haha.

Went past the next morning and it looked worse than the aftermath of a Big Day Out (big musical festival), but luckily a large group of cows, and some environmentally minded dogs, had moved in to clean up the tonnes of scattered rubbish.  If only they ate plastic.

Tried for about an hour to hire a motorbike at about 830-930am but either places were:

a) Missing staff

b) Had rented out their 3.5 scooters

c) Were trying to rent me a scooter whilst conducting home handyman auto electrics to get it started (otay otay!) which didn't inspire me with confidence for a 70km return drive

Luckily Prekachear drove by and stopped said hello and rented me his scooter.  Off to Bou Sra waterfall I went.  Stopped at the coffee plantation, which had amazing coffee and a talkative manager.  Ate alot of red 4WD dust along the way. Slightly scary not seeing anything until the dust cleared then seeing a van appear in front of you overtaking the 4WD through the dust cloud.  You have been warned!

Went onwards to the waterfall after confirming it was the steep narrow red dirt patch "road".  According to the "map" it was a simple straight ride for about 30km. HA!  The dirt tracks were at times indistinguishable, and came to 2 or 3 way intersections, in which each track looked equally unlikely.  So after 1st gearing up some very challenging tracks, I began to think I was going nowhere except ah, lost.  So I began leaving myself signs (saved me being lost in the bush) to make my way back.  Took several different paths, including one that took me past a very suprised Khmer guy when I stopped to take a photo of the bush.  "Bou Sra?" I asked, I just got a confused look.  After about 20km of different paths, some near scooter drops and alot of slow going, I headed back onto the main road (made it!).

Went back to the coffee plantation for lunch (apart from the noodles everything is meant for families so that's why the other dishes cost 44000 riel!!!) and some more strong delicious coffee.  Showed them the "map" to the waterfall and they couldn't stop laughing.  They said I had to keep turning right all the time at the intersections, definitely not straight like the map said.  

Made it back for a rest and some food.  

I'd recommend either a guide/moto dop to get to the Bou Sra waterfall, unless you can find a 250 dirtbike and are an experienced rider (scooter in 1st gear is a slow, frustrating choice).  And a GPS locator or some way of telling where you are because they are infintite paths that head off everywhere and all look the same.  

Also take heaps of sunscreen, the tops of my legs were starting to burn.  Oh and expect to come back covered in red dust.  My long sleeve shirt was white, now its red.  

Will post some photos of this misadventure soon.  

Tags: off roading mondulkiri, scooter, sen monorom



i like cambodia my country and you?

  KIM YAO Jul 22, 2012 12:01 PM


Yes I loved it too!

  Murph Jul 23, 2012 9:00 AM

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