Steve Martaindale

Author of the JP Weiscarver Mystery Series

Top of the temple

tiger-cave

It’s late Monday afternoon and clouds have rolled in to block out the sun and cool things a bit here on the Krabi coast of Thailand. Temperatures have been around 90 with “feels like” temps reaching even over 100.

Today has been our first full-fledged relaxing day. We made four short walking trips – to get breakfast, to buy a jug of drinking water, to visit the grocery store and to simply look around. It was also helpful to stretch our legs because we’re still sore from Sunday’s trek.

dragon-entranceI mentioned earlier about James’ uncle, Thomas, and his wife Tuckatoo, a Thai native whose name I probably butchered. The four of us ventured to the other side of Krabi Town to visit the popular Tiger Cave Temple, Wat Tham Suea.

Wikipedia calls it one of the most sacred Buddhist sites in the province. This link will give you background if you’re interested. I do know Tuckatoo was very excited to visit.

img_1671A notable attribute of the temple is that it has a “top” temple – very small and all outdoors – located more than 900 feet above the main temple. It is accessed by a single stairway consisting of 1,237 steps. The challenge of ascending them is intensified by the steepness of the risers, some exceeding 12 inches.

the-beginningSomeone suggested we go ahead and make the climb and none of us was smart enough to say no. On the way up, we kept meeting people coming down, telling us it was worth the trip and advising us to stop often to rest. We chatted most extensively with a young couple from Holland. Even though he was wearing a T-shirt that boasted about touring the USA, they had never been there, so we offered each other advice on how to visit or respective countries.

Enjoy the photos.

smiling-climbers

monkeys

before-new-temple

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