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Indonesia: No It Did Not Burn Down XI – Lombok: Unreal Climb Up Rinjani

Published: 29.2.2016
Welcome back! We continue in our trip across Indonesia. Now we are below the summit of Rinjani (we are at about 2350 meters). Rinjani is Indonesia’s second highest mountain. The night is upon us as well as the very climb to the summit (3726 m).

Keep in mind that the temperature can go well below zero here. Therofore, dress appropriately. Today we are going to conquer Rinjani’s summit. You need gloves here. Take water, cookies and grape sugar with you. This should give you enough energy.

According to our guide we are supposed to set off at 2.30 in the morning. Unfortunately, we got only couple of ordinary cookies without any filling. And warm tea. Had we not the rest of our supplies with us including grape sugar we wouldn’t reach the top.

 the view of the crater and Anak lake

First, you walk through all tent cities built along the edge of the crater. Then you find yourselves in volcanic dust. It raises due to other people walking in front of you, therefore, it is better to wear a mask. These conditions don’t change much later. The worst section (as for swirling volcanic dust ) is the first one. This is a steep climb from the camp to the ridge which takes you then to the top. And also the last section. The trail is really long and very difficult. It takes lot of energy to walk in volcanic sand. Being hungry and freezing doesn’t help your experience much. Therefore, reaching the top requires superhuman stamina.

camping at the crater’s edge

Upon the first steep section the trail continues along the ridge. Terrain is better there and not that steep. It is pleasant, however, it gets worse and worse. During the first two hours you don’t even need to take beaks. Later, we felt more fatigue due to high altitude. Walking in volcanic terrain where you make two steps forth one back is really difficult.

Unfortunately, the sunrise began when we were still below the summit. The climb takes more than 3,5 hours. Therefore, it is better to set off earlier. And the climb is really difficult. However, outdo oneself is great reward. And the view is amazing! The vista of the lake on the bottom of the crater, other craters and volcanoes around is wonderful!

 climbing the summit is very difficult  the trail to the top is on the left

While climbing Rinjani be careful because stepping even half-a-mater to the side might be very dangerous; mainly during night climb. While getting back from the top it was sometimes breathtaking experience (during the daylight).

It took about two hours to get back to Crater Rim camp. We had breakfast which consisted of a mini pancake, fried bananas – these were really delicious but there were only a few of them. However, your experience might be different with better food.

the summit of Rinjani is of loose terrain and looks really dangerous

We fell asleep immediately for about thirty minutes right after we finished our breakfast. Then we packed our things. We were informed that the following night would be at a camp down by Anak lake (2 000 m). We were looking forward to take swim in that beautiful lake.

To be continued…

GPS: 8°24'08.4"S 116°27'26.3"E

Text and photos: Martina Brožková



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