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In-Kwaen Mountain - Kanchanaburi


Height - Approximately 150 metre's elevation

Entry Coordinates - 14.013336, 99.475227

Trail Length - Approximately 200 metre's

Time required - 1 hr for ascent & 1 hr for descent

Rope - None

Difficulty - Quite overgrown with lots of loose rocks. Near the top the rocks are very sharp. I did it on my own and there is help nearby.

Water intake - 1 litre per person and take a snack

Guide needed - No, There is a Monk called Pra Lek in the nearby temple, he can help you.

4G - Yes, throughout the hike

Definitely one of the coolest hikes around because its not too long, it has amazing views and a beautiful balanced rock perched at the top. In-Kwaen mountain (definitely not a mountain but whatever) is a few klicks off highway 3228 just before you get to Kanchanaburi. It is only a couple of hours outside Bangkok and there are plenty of other things to do around the area. You will enter through a temple called วัดเขาช่องเสด็จ which is maintained by the monk Pra Lek. He is a really nice human and will let you know where the entrance to the hike is. You can park in the temples grounds but please do make sure you actually visit the temple and make an offering.

The hike starts a little bit on from the temple grounds down a small dirt track. There is no specific trail for 3/4's of the hike but as you will use a small trail near to the top on the left side, you should try and start from the left of the balancing rock. There was a whole load of rubbish left in a heap but obviously I do not know if it is still there, Keep on going past that until you see a rock I left to mark where you should start from. I would say from the temple walk about 150metre's and then make your way into the brush.

The hike starts off fairly flat and will get steeper the higher you get. The first section can be difficult as there is no real trail so you are walking through overgrown brush with lots of small sharp rocks everywhere. There seemed to be a lot of wasps when I was there but just ignore them and they will ignore you. How you deal with wasps, is if you get too close to their nest, they will let you know by increasing their numbers around you. You just simply walk back the way you came and find another way, do not lash out, they are being kind enough to warn you so respect their boundaries and warning and you should be fine.

So from about the middle area you should be able get a clearer view of the rocky top and the balancing rock. As I said, stay to the left as that is where you can get the easiest access to the top. I went around the rocky top and this is by far the easiest way. You have to watch your footing here as it will get steeper and the rocks are very loose and very sharp. I have seen some pictures of people even wearing gloves and to be honest with you it isn't such a bad idea. You should get some nice views from here with the mountains in-between the blue sky and the green flora.

You will now be nearing the top and last section, it will get rockier and you will see a path to take. You will come to a rocky gully, The picture is below and is looking at it from above. Take that trail and then the rest is pretty self-explanatory. You can move around the top quite a bit but please be careful as there are a few edges with sheer drops and very loose rocks and paths.

The way down can be quite hard in places and you might need to get on your butt if you don't have a walking stick which I will never have and neither want, I prefer sliding on my butt!

Do not forget to visit the temple and make an offering. Pra Lek kindly walked me up to the cave where there is a Buddha's footprint; he was really nice and helped me make the offering in the correct way as I always seem to get it wrong and it always seems to differ in every temple I go to 5555. Below are some pictures of the temple.

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