Note: Sanctuaries are different to National Parks in Thailand, Thailand currently has established 39 sanctuaries and access is more restrictive as their role is as a sanctuary for wildlife rather than a park for the nation. Some sanctuaries do allow limited access to tourists.
Khao Ang Rue Nai is a conservation zone covering 643,750 rai area in the Eastern Forest Complex - the last abundant piece of forest land of the East. It is the source of the Bang Pakong River in Chachoengsao, the Tanot Canal in Chanthaburi, and the Prasae River in Rayong. Geographically, the area is not very steep; it is about 30-150 m above sea level.
There are wild animals, such as elephant, gaur, deer, barking deer, banteng, porcupine, etc., and birds, such as Siamese fire back, great pied hornbill, etc. On this trail you will quite amazed by the amount of tracks from elephant, guar, banteng and deer - their comparative abundance is obvious and tracks are everywhere. There is a good chance of seeing mammals on this route in the early mornings and evenings
It takes about 3.5 hours from Bangkok. From Chachoengsao, take the Chachoengsao ? Phanom Sarakham route. From Amphoe Phanom Sarakham, follow Highway 3245 (Phanom Sarakham ? Sanam Chai Khet). Change to Highway 3259, past Amphoe Tha Takiap to Ban Nong Khok, for around 50 km. Take the Ban Nong Khok - Amphoe Khlong Hat route for around 20 km to reach the Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary Office and the Chachoengsao Wildlife Research Station.
To visit the wildlife sanctuary, a written request for permission should be made at least 15 days in advance to the Director of the Wildlife Conservation Office, Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Flora. For more information, call 0 2561 4292 ext. 658, 659 or contact the Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary Tel. 0 3850 2001.
Length of trail :: 20 km to finish point on this file but goes much further
Hiking time :: upto 8 hours (includes return)
Difficulty level :: moderate (scale : easy, moderate, hard, ouch)
Terrain :: Flat open creek clearings and mixed deciduous forest
Minimum essentials :: 2 L water, food, rehyd salts
Maps :: Khai Ang Rue Nai Trail
Start = look for small turn in just after the KARN HQ (south of the road) and Chachoengsao Wildlife Research Station (north of the road) marked by a blue sign saying "1.5 km to resevoir" in Thai. you can also start the trail from the KARN HQ
Creek - a jungle stream passing through the trail - nice place to relax
In June I got a chance to go back and push these tracks further. Using the same start point we tried an eastward pathway about 6 km into the forest. The trip was not too successful in some respects though because the conditions are now pretty bad due to the rains.
After just 1 km we had a lay low for 30 minutes due to elephants being next to the track and after 8 kms we had to cancel going forward due to another herd of elephants with young on the track in front of us. The conditions are very wet and the going was tough as it involved slogging through flooded sections of the track constantly. Added to this was incessant biting of horse flies - through clothing - which was both painful and annoying.
The track we were following, theoretically would lead back to the after about 20 kilometres - but we will have to leave that for another day.
Trekker, I am doing a border run to aranya prathet soon so thought I might pop into the KARN sanctuary on the way back. Are there any activities for day trippers without the prior written permission? i.e short walks or nature trails around the headquarters?
Its a bit iffy this time of year, you could call in the HQ and sit by the reservoir - just ask at the rangers HQ (the left hand side complex, half way through the sanctuary if you are coming in from the AP side) but I dont think they will allow you walk anywhere this time of year because the elephants are very active coming into the reservoir area for water. As a sanctuary they dont normally encourage non - official visitors. Why not try Ta Phraya NP, very good chance of Gaur and jackal there on the road in the morning/evening and close to AP.
Thanks for the tips Paul, If its difficult then maybe Ill try somewhere else. In fact looking at the map just now and at some of your posts about Pang Sida, going there could be an option aswell. Ill check out Ta Phraya aswell, Gaur and Jackal would be nice!