Start a new Travel Blog! Blogabond Home Maps People Photos My Stuff

Diving, bikes and two close calls!

Ko Tao, Thailand

We arrived at the Thai island of Koh Tau and caught a pick-up truck straight to the Crystal Dive Resort. First impressions were good: A nice resort right on the beach close to all the nightlife.

At this point we need to make one thing clear: Richie Hallam (Diamond's mate) is a legend! He used to work at the resort as a dive instructor and had sorted everything out for us - we got our dive courses cheap and we were upgraded to a VIP room, which included a waterwall in the bathroom!

We signed up for the dive courses (PADI open water for Sean and Dan and PADI advanced for Chappell) and then hit the bars.

The next day Dan and Sean started their open water course (in the classroom) and Karl did a quick scuba refresher course in the hotel pool. For the next few days we took it pretty easy at night and dived in the day. The diving all went pretty smoothly - notable points being swimming with sharks, Sean's puppet style swimming, Dan's inability to clear his mask in anything less than 10 attempts and Dan going down to 21m even though we are only qualified to go down to 18m...

So everything was great, until Dan suggested we hire some motorbikes/quads...

Dan and Karl went for the Honda CRM 250 motocross bike and Sean opted for the safer (in theory) 250CC quad bike. For the first 30 minutes everything was fine, but Karl was getting a little bored of the normal roads and wanted to go 'off-road'. By this point it had started raining - no problem we thought. We spotted a nice little hill with a gentle incline with a slight bend off to the left. Karl took the lead and bombed it up the hill, followed closely by Dan on his bike and Sean on the quad. As Sean turned the bend he saw Karl lying on the floor with the bike on top of him. Sean slowly came to a stop and whilst he was in the middle of taking the mick out of Chappell for falling off his bike the Quad started sliding backwards down the slope (with Sean still on it!). After a few seconds it picked up quite a bit of speed and unfortunately there was a big rock face behind him so he made a quick decision to jump off the quad! Luckily the quad and him went in slightly different directions as the quad flipped several times down the hill and Sean slid about 20m down the (concrete) hill on his eblows and knees!!
In hindsight, the hill was near impossible to climb (although Dan somehow managed to not fall off his bike). Although it started as a fairly gentle slope, once around the bend it became ridiculously steep, the concrete was covered in moss and there was practically a river of water gushing down it. In fact, when Dan and Karl went back to the slope the next day to recover Sean's mobile phone they tried walking up the slope and slipped over twice!

So, what was the damage?

Karl: scraped back
Sean: Scraped everything (hands, elbows, knees, ankles, back, arse, etc.)
Karl's bike: snapped clutch lever (50 quid to fix)
Sean's Quad: Front bodywork, rear bodywork, handlebars, rear bumper, brake lever, wheels (250 quid to fix!)

Although Dan escaped that incident he didn't get off totally scott free as he managed to get his bike stuck in a river / quick-sand. Between Karl and Dan they managed to eventually free the bike.

Once we'd passed our diving courses we went out to celebrate with the rest of our diving group and the instructors. The night started fairly calmly but ended with us all absolutely hammered dancing like loons on the stage at a club called 'The Castle' - we blame the Samsong & redbull buckets! During the night Dan was sick on Chappell's flip-flops then fell asleep in the corner...

The next day we rested and then went for a couple of 'fun dives'. This is where Sean had his second 'run-in'. Part way through the second dive he took a breath and instead of air, it was water. Oh well, not to worry, just blow out and take another breath - except this breath was water too! He pressed the purge button and took a third breath (noticing that his diving 'buddy' and the rest of the group were now dissapearing into the distance) - again, water! So his regulator was basically knackered - he now tried switching to his alternate air source and took a massive breath hoping that it would be air - luckily it was! He had survived, but given that things usually come in threes Sean's vowed not to do anything even remotely dangerous for the next few weeks...

Other highlights from the Koh Tau experience included Dan cutting Karl's hair (Mohawk with almost a skinhead on the sides) and an awesome Monsoon party on our last night.

After Koh Tau, we caught a boat to Koh Phangan for the full moon party! (SM)

permalink written by  Sean, Karl & Dan on November 19, 2007 from Ko Tao, Thailand
from the travel blog: Around the world in 180 days...
Send a Compliment

Is my brother going to be recogniseable by the end of this 6 month trip ! I fear not with all these "Bond" type adventures. I can only worry what the next destination has in store for him ! As I hear that reef sharks lurk in the Australian waters! A chain mail wet suit might be required for his next diving experience.
I'm sure the space pen could be handy when trying to spell it out to a great white shark that you are not it's next meal. Or perhaps I should have explained on giving you the pen, that it has a tiny explosive device in it along with a poisened dart for anti-shark measures !

Try and be careful
Love nick and JEANNINE XXXXX

permalink written by  Jeannine Louise Collins on December 2, 2007

comment on this...
Previous: The rain in Vietnam Next: Full Moon Party

trip feed
author feed
trip kml
author kml


Blogabond v2.40.58.80 © 2020 Expat Software Consulting Services about : press : rss : privacy
View as Map View as Satellite Imagery View as Map with Satellite Imagery Show/Hide Info Labels Zoom Out Zoom In Zoom Out Zoom In
find city: