Transcon: Hmong New Year and Phonsavanh
Back on the road after a few days rest. We left Luang Prabang and started climbing high and what a sight to see the clouds trapped in the valley. We were literally riding above the clouds, although it was just fog.
It's time for Hmong New Year and they are the people of the mountainous area of Laos. In every town and village we saw people decked out in the their traditional wear and there's this courting custom where girls and guys stand across each other and throw a ball to play catch. If the guy drops it, he's considered not worthy.
The beautiful thing about riding your own vehicle and especially a motorcycle in a new land is noticing the gradual changes between places. Luang Prabang had more tropical forest and now we're south a bit in the east, in [Phonsavanh](http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=19.4166666667,103.166666667&spn=0.1,0.1&q=19.4166666667,103.166666667 (Phonsavan)&t=h "Phonsavan"), where the trees are deciduous and pine. The altitude is a little higher but the scenery has changed quite dramatically. Riding in Northern Laos meant twisting and turning tightly around the rugged mountains and now in Central Laos it's more open and flowing. We visited the Plain of Jars where there are these huge stone-carved jars scattered over a wide area. They date from the Iron Age and it's a mystery how they got here. Archaeologists think they were burial urns but the local legends say the gods made them to brew Lao Rice Whiskey ;)
Cheers and Happy Christmas!
Riding above the clouds as we left Luang Prabang.
Coming across Hmong people as they celebrate their New Year. Very colorful attire.
Royal Enfield Bullet, best captured in Black & White...
The Plain of Jairs in Phonsavanh.