On Top of the World: Hik­ing Across In­done­sia

Indonesia Expat - - Content Page - BY SA­NIA RASYID (INDO TREKKERS)

In­done­sia is well known as a coun­try with many large vol­ca­noes, with the ma­jor­ity of the 130 still ac­tive. Si­t­u­ated along the equa­tor, the coun­try boasts a unique bio­di­ver­sity. This makes In­done­sia a prime des­ti­na­tion for hik­ing fans around the world.

Moun­tains and es­pe­cially vol­ca­noes are chal­leng­ing to hike and there are some special re­quire­ments be­fore tak­ing to In­done­sia’s slopes. Moun­tains around the world have dif­fer­ent char­ac­ter­is­tics which in­flu­ence the de­gree of dif­fi­culty. A 3,000 me­tre above sea level moun­tain in Nepal or in Europe may be an eas­ier slope, with pleas­ant weather mak­ing it an easy hike. This is not the case in In­done­sia, with even 2,211 MASL Mount Salak in Bo­gor be­ing a de­mand­ing hike with steep in­clines, hu­mid­ity and year round rain.

Novice hik­ers re­quire special train­ing be­fore tak­ing on a moun­tain, in­clud­ing run­ning and stair­case walk­ing on a medium speed at least twice a week. This type of car­dio helps oxy­gen cir­cu­la­tion in the body as well as train­ing would- be hik­ers in learn­ing to con­trol the lungs. Ad­di­tion­ally, hik­ers must be­come used to hik­ing with a heavy back­pack. While porters are com­mon and as­sist in car­ry­ing camp­ing gear, cook­ing gear and first aid equip­ment, hik­ers will be re­quired to carry their own back­pack.

For some of In­done­sia’s more dif­fi­cult hikes – and the most stun­ning – such as Mount Raung in East Java and Mount Jayaw­i­jaya in Pa­pua, special gear is also needed to en­sure the safety of hik­ers along treach­er­ous parts of the climb.

For climbers tak­ing on In­done­sia’s hu­mid sum­mits a high pro­tein diet is needed, un­like in the Hi­malayas where a high car­bo­hy­drate diet helps to pre­vent al­ti­tude sick­ness.

But, In­done­sia is di­verse in its of­fer­ings for hik­ers. Here are some of the most pop­u­lar hikes for a va­ri­ety of clas­si­fi­ca­tions.

Mount Gede (2,958 MASL) Grade : Mod­er­ate Ci­bo­das – West Java Trekking du­ra­tion : 2D/1N* Travel du­ra­tion : 3D/2N

A twin moun­tain sit­ting be­side Mount Pan­grango, Mount Gede is a favourite for the Jakarta com­mu­nity. Just a few hours drive from the city Mount Gede has three dif­fer­ent routes: via Ci­bo­das, Putri or Se­labin­tana. The long­est and most dif­fi­cult is via Se­labin­tana in Suk­abumi. The Putri trail de­scend­ing in Ci­bo­das is the most pop­u­lar route as it’s shorter and of­fers a change of scenery in­clud­ing a small lake and some amaz­ing wa­ter­falls.

Mount Se­meru (3,676 MASL) Grade : Chal­leng­ing Lu­ma­jang – East Java Trekking du­ra­tion : 3D/2N* Travel du­ra­tion : 5D/4N

Se­meru, the high­est peak in Java, means great moun­tain while the peak is called Ma­hameru.

A flight to Malang and a four hour drive to the foothills at Ranu Pani vil­lage will take hik­ers to the spec­tac­u­lar climb. Start­ing with a beau­ti­ful land­scape and seem­ingly ever- chang­ing scenery in­clud­ing an open jun­gle, the fa­mous Ranu Kum­bolo lake, a laven­der field and an open pine for­est, the first day will end at the Kal­i­mati camp site.

With the sum­mit push be­gin­ning at mid­night the real adventure be­gins with a climb through steep jun­gle un­til it gives out to deep sand trails. This is where the train­ing comes in. The sands are the most chal­leng­ing as­pect of this climb and re­quire special tech­nique to re­sist slid­ing. But it is worth it, with the vol­cano puff­ing away every 30 min­utes in a stun­ning scene.

All hik­ers must leave by 10 a.m. with a day­time change in wind di­rec­tion send­ing dan­ger­ous and toxic vol­canic gases across the trekking route.

Mount Rin­jani (3,726 MASL) Grade : Chal­leng­ing Lom­bok – West Nusa Teng­gara Trekking du­ra­tion : 4D/ 3N* Travel du­ra­tion : 6D/4N

Rin­jani is the high­est peak on Lom­bok and has a num­ber of dif­fer­ent routes: Sem­balun, Se­naru and Torean. A favourite is as­cend­ing via Sem­balun and de­scend­ing via Se­naru.

Hik­ers will be treated to a beau­ti­ful walk past a sa­van­nah as they pass the steep Bukit Penye­salan hills be­fore reach­ing the Plawan­gan Sem­balun camp site. The sum­mit push starts be­tween 2 and 3 a.m. and in­cludes a deep sand trek. On the way up, be sure to take a look in­side the crater at the Se­gara Anak lake as well as a new vol­cano named Baru­jari.

Mount Merbabu (3,145 MASL) Grade : De­mand­ing Yo­gyakarta – Cen­tral Java Trekking du­ra­tion : 2D/1N* Travel du­ra­tion : 4D/ 3N

Just a three hour drive from Yo­gyakarta hik­ers will find the foothill of Merbabu, with four routes to the peak: Suwant­ing, Selo, Theke­lan and Wekas. The most ac­ces­si­ble sees hik­ers start on Suwant­ing and de­scend via Selo. The most breath­tak­ing views are on of­fer through the pine for­est and the sa­van­nah of Suwant­ing. From the sa­van­nah Mount Mer­api, Mount Sin­doro, Mount Sumb­ing and Mount Se­lamet are all vis­i­ble in an amaz­ing panorama.

Mount Ker­inci (3,805 MASL) Grade : Chal­leng­ing West Su­mat­era – Jambi

Trekking du­ra­tion : 2D/1N*

Travel du­ra­tion : 5D/ 3N (w/ ex­tra 1 day hike to 7 moun­tains lake)

Mount Ker­inci can be ac­cessed by a seven hour drive from Padang, West Su­ma­tra. Mount Ker­inci is the high­est vol­cano not just in the coun­try but in all of South­east Asia. With a tight jun­gle and stun­ning rain­for­est it can be steep and slip­pery. This one is for the truly ex­pe­ri­enced, with nar­row parts where hik­ers are forced to crawl.

Mount Tamb­ora (2,722 MASL) Grade : De­mand­ing Sum­bawa – West Nusa Teng­gara

Trekking du­ra­tion : 3D/2N via Desa Pan­casila or 2D/1N via Doro Ncanga

Travel du­ra­tion : 5D/4N & 4D/ 3N

Tamb­ora is world fa­mous – and for a world chang­ing rea­son. The vol­cano’s erup­tion in 1815 was so big it changed the cli­mate around the world, block­ing out the sun for a ‘year without sum­mer’ which led to de­stroyed crops, ill­nesses and thou­sands of dead across the world.

Tamb­ora has two routes. The Desa Pan­casila route is a touch more dif­fi­cult with a hike through steep jun­gle, or the Doro Ncanga. From Doro Ncanga, a jeep car­ries vis­i­tors across a beau­ti­ful sa­van­nah to the camp­site. From there, a three hour hike be­fore sun­rise will take lucky adventure seek­ers to the sum­mit. To book any of these trips get in touch with Indo Trekkers via www.in­dotrekkers.com

Indo Trekkers is a pre­mium brand trekking com­pany that pro­vides ex­clu­sive ser­vices and a high stan­dard of trekking to en­sure each jour­ney is com­fort­able, un­for­get­table and safe.

Face­book: in­dotrekkers

In­sta­gram: @in­dotrekkers

Email : in­dotrekkers.bali@gmail.com What­sApp : +62 878 87080709

* with com­plete porters sup­port

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Indonesia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.