Stone Canyon Media Corp.

Greetings Arch Hunters...today is Arch Wednesday! (Issue #64)
Arch Wednesday is your weekly update for arch reports from around the world, as reported to the

World Arch Database
Worldwide arch count: 8206

We received a report from Travis Lane of an arch in Thailand near its border with Myanmar (formerly known as Burma). Travis had a very interesting time in getting to this arch! Travis writes:
Attached is a photo of an arch near the Thai/Burma border. It's located in a national park. I was on the tourist trail visiting the famous ruins and temples and as strange luck would have it, I spotted a brochure with a photo of this arch. So I made this impulsive detour... I packed a small bag, leaving the bulk of my belongings in Sukhothai and recklessly took off to see what for most people is simply “a hole in a rock”… but for me, it's an inexplicable passion and obsession for these rarities of nature. However, like pursuing other obsessions and one’s passions, it seems that searching for these arches is not always without risks.
Visiting this arch is not easy, or at least it wasn’t for me at the time! Not unless you want to play it safe and have a guide or driver take you straight to the area of this destination. It’s more exciting to go alone like I did, not having any plan whatsoever, just a brochure with a photo of a “hole in the rock” as my only reference. So I simply headed west from Sukhothai on a bus that was cramped beyond capacity with locals… and with no surprise, I found myself to be the only Westerner headed this way. So I tried to convey to these Thais (who were all staring at me, propably saying to themselves "stupid farang!") that I knew exactly what I was doing and exactly where I was going!! Not the case at all! I ultimately ended up in what seemed like the middle of nowhere. I spent several hours walking into the park from where the bus dropped me off at its entrance. I thought 'Great! What did I get myself into this time?'  I was lucky enough to eventually hitch a ride into the park's center with a truck driver. I bet that I had walked 5 or 6 miles and the truck happened to be the only vehicle that passed by the entire time. I would have never been able to walk what was probably 10 or 15 more miles to the park's headquarters before nightfall. Again, very lucky! T
here were no other visitors in the park during the two days I was there...only soldiers and park workers. I rented a tent and the park staff was good enough to set it up for me while I did a quick hike to see a waterfall.
The next day I hiked to see the arch accompanied by two soldiers with machine guns. This seemed strange at the time. These soldiers were provided to me by the officer in charge. I had first walked into the headquarters building to get directions to the trail that leads to the arch (as I held the brochure and pointed to the photo). The officer was very friendly and professional, and he instructed the two soldiers to guide me. (I assume the area may be a smuggling route between Thailand and Burma). The trail was through dense jungle. What was so surprising is how noisy it was (the hum of insects). And as you can see from the picture…well worth the trip! Very exhilarating when I finally arrived at the arch!
 
I later spent the evening drinking whiskey with the Thai park workers as they played cards... I believe that I was a rare and amusing encounter for them, equally as they were for me... I was probably twice their size, and a few challenged me to arm wrestling. Normally, I'd warn solo travelers never to get themselves into a situation or setting like this, especially around gambling. We didn't understand a single word exchanged all night, but I had a great time, and luckily, still had my wits about me to politely decline what I assumed were attempts get me to gamble for money, as well as possible offers of a woman and whatever it was that they were smoking...


Each Wednesday we update the World Arch Database (WAD). We'll have newly reported arches, more accurate data and photos for existing arch entries, plus fun arch stories, facts and more! To subscribe to the World Arch Database, click here.

World Arch Database and Arch Wednesday now on Facebook! 
The WAD has now joined the modern age by posting a page to Facebook.com. Check it out at www.facebook.com/WorldArchDatabase.


WAD Tip of the Week 
When arch hunting, always stop when looking for arches. Attempting to look for arches while you are walking or driving can be disastrous!


SPANOIDS (arch facts and statistics)
Net Change in Worldwide Count since last Wednesday: +6
Arches with Greater Arch Dimension of 100 ft (30m) or more: 158 (1.932% of worldwide count)
US State with the most arches: Utah with 4373 (about 53.5% of worldwide count or about 60.6% of US count)
Country with the most arches outside the US: Algeria (hundreds of arches) or France, with over 900 according to French arch hunter Guilain Debossens.
Fallen (Worldwide):
34 (0.385%)

Data Projects
NABS Web Site Cross-Reference
We are cross-referencing the WAD with the Natural Arch and Bridge Society's (NABS) web site www.naturalarches.org. This is a huge job that will likely take several more months to complete (we're done cross-referencing the US section of this site).

Coming Soon
Nicholus Terzakis Archives Cross-Reference: We'll be cross-referencing the WAD with the lifetime collection of arch data and photos from arch hunter Nicholus Terzakis.

Larry Beck's New Mexico Archives: Arch hunter and current NABS President Larry Beck's compilation of hundreds of New Mexico arches will be added to the WAD. We already include many many New Mexico arches submitted by Mr. Beck, but he has found many many more since our last data dump in 2008.

Arch Hunting Expeditions, Rallys and Events
The Great American Solar Eclipse is coming on August 21, 2017. We plan to visit some arches in Idaho, USA that are in the path of totality to try to get some unusual arch photos during this rare event!
The Natural Arch and Bridge Society has a spring rally planned for late April/early May, 2017 in southwestern Utah and points east. For complete details, visit their web site www.naturalarches.org.


Happy Arch Hunting!
yours truly,
Stone Canyon


 

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