Waterfalls around Dalat
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Overcast skies made for a chilly mountain morning. No sooner than I set out from Dalat with a rented motorbike, a misty drizzle began. It wasn't enough to put on my Wal-Mart poncho but cool enough to zip my jacket all the way up. Just a few miles down the mountain, I turned onto a road that led to a pagoda complex which had a spectacular overlook of Tuyen Lam Lake. The lake sprawled for several miles and looked like it had several small islands. I didn't ride down to its shore since my gas gage was indicating in the red. The setting could have just as easily been in the Rockies or the Alps with its surrounding hills of pine forest.
I got back on the main road and coasted the motorbike downhill for four kilometers right into the parking lot of the Datanla Waterfall.
The Datanla Falls funneled into the narrow gorge in several stages. A footpath on one side had a few Alpine-style vender shacks. Like at the Cam Ly falls yesterday, a cowboy posed his pony for pictures. One woman sat on it decked out with a furnished hat, vest, and cowboy boots. Another park employee, dressed in a bear costume, took a break for a cigarette and game of Chinese chess. The trail led to a small bridge that crossed the stream to flat rocks near the base of the falls.
It was only a few more kilometers down the mountain road to the Prenn Waterfall. That park had a 15,000 Dong admission and another twenty for a cable car that went to the base of the falls and back. A trail led behind the thundering falls where the mist was no worse than the morning drizzle. The park extended for several hundred yards downstream. The usual horses were available as were ostrich and elephant rides.
I found a place that sold gasoline and refueled the motorbike. The ride up the mountain was quicker than coasting down. Traffic was light and I was able to enjoy the spectacular mountain scenery. I got back into Dalat much sooner than I desired; return trips always seem faster.