of course, they do not have the inclusive
timing, certification, transport and other
frills that go with official registration.
Accommodation in Chom Thong fills
up by Christmas, but there are camping
options available if you don’t manage
to secure a room; otherwise, it will take
about one hour by car from Chiang Mai
to reach the start. You can ride the climb
at any time of the year. The main road
ride from Chiang Mai to Chom Thong is
busy and best avoided.
The 22-kilometer climb from Mae
Chaem (on the opposite side of the
mountain) is possibly even more
impressive, and you will also find other
great riding in the same area, making it
well worth a few days of your time.
From late February to mid-May the
air in Chiang Mai and the lowlands is
abysmal due to annual burning. The
higher altitude of the climb does usually
make for more clear air, but it’s not the
ideal time to ride here.
The main rainy season is between
July to September, and although this
can mean that you miss a day here
and there due to bad weather, it is also
a very vibrant time to ride, as the rice
fields are all green and the air is also
Even some of the leading riders
here used MTB enduro-style gearing of
34x40, and I would highly recommend
keeping gearing low and enjoying
As event info is mostly in Thai,
the best option to find entry details
is through the Inthanon Challenge
Facebook page, or by e-mailing
entries are through www.thaimtb.com.
How early is the early-morning start?