We rented Chinese copies of 125 cc Honda dreams in Mandalay an headed east; Went thru Pyin U Lwin, Kayaukme and spent 2 nights in Hsipaw where the next day we took off into the restricted Shan state north 80 kms took to the town of Namhsan thru valleys and mtns. 6 hours of travel thru some amazing scenery, stopped for 2 hours and slept while it rained very hard than kept going thru the drizzle.
Coming back we were held up while they repaired two landslides from that afternoon but still only took us 4 hours. Slept very good that night
Next day returned to Kyaukme an asked for directions to the Gem capital of the world "Mogok", known for the finest Rubies & Sapphires. Its a restricted area and has been closed to all westerners since 2008. But we wanted to try and go. We went past 3 checkpoints but as we were riding in the rain, no one stopped us.
Arriving in Mogok we went to the one of the only 2 hotels in town but they refused to allow us to stay as we were there illegally, so finally ended up at the xxxxxx resort out of town , they allowed is to stay after I said i was not leaving and they made us promise to not tell anyone that we had stayed there.
The ride up from Kyaukme to Mogok an back to Mandalay over the old Mandalay - Mogok road went thru some of the most spectacular scenery i have seen in years
total distance was over 820 kms and over 34 hours on the bike with 12 of it in the rain.