Mount Rinjani, Indonesia

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#sembalun #summit #hypotermia #sunset #sunrise

Those are our main topic for three days in Lombok. Yes, we were at Mount Rinjani!

Two weeks ago, my friend posted on whatsapp group about travelling to Lombok and conquer the legendary Rinjani. “It is my call”. Without hesitation I contacted my friend and promise him if my schedule fit with his plan, I will join. And then, It turned okay.

Every mountain top is within reach if you just keep climbing.

I went to Lombok alone at Tuesday afternoon. I booked a flight at Batik Air, unfortunately the departure was from Halim Airport. That was my first time to visit this place. The airport is really small compare to Soetta Airport. I love Batik Air, I get Garuda taste with cheaper price. I also can use my earphone to watch the movie.

I met Mail and Rhey at Lombok Airport two hours later, they took the latest flight. In one our our driver came to pick us up. He is really generous, he gave us a free of charge to spend the night at his home. Actually, our plan was to sleep at airport, but he explained that it was a terrible idea. And thats true, no one stayed at airport. Eventhough I still can sleep well until sunrise.

After a quick preparation, we headed to Sembalun at 5am in the morning. It was quite a long road, took about 2,5 hours. The chilly air was really relaxing, thing that we can not afford in Jakarta. Haha. A long the trip we talked about Jakarta and comparison with Lombok. The driver was really funny guy.

Sembalun is one of several entrance to Mount Rinjani. It is considered as the safest way to start the journey. We hired a porter to help us brought our logistic. We met a couple, Restu and Jak, and they became our travel mate. Nice couple.

The first stop is Pos 1. The road was kind of boring and not really steep, but it is good for warming up. After 30 minutes, we find the savana. Some people approached us and offered us Ojek. Yes! Ojek. They provide ojek from here to pos 1 and pos 1. But we refused it, we are traveller. haha. Anyhow, there was a guy that take that ojek, seemed he was really exhausted, moreover he smoke.

We met some bule, well most of the climber was bule, that walked really fast. They hired more porter to bring their carrier so there was no burden for them, just go with their body. Haha. Talking about the porter, Mount Rinjani gives them money by become porter. Their fee is IDR 175 per day. They are really strong, they can bring 20KG of goods. And extremely really fast.

We had our lunch at Pos 2. When we arrived at Pos 2, our porter already prepared some simple dish with rice. It was really good in the middle of the hot day. An hour later, we continue our journey to Pos 3. As I took the first step, I got pain in my upper knee. The path is starting to steeper. We have to adapt with the change.

In Pos 3 we had to decide whether to set the tent here or continue to Pos 4 and Plawangan. After long discussion, we decided to continue. It was 4pm, the valley was covered by mist. The elevation of the road become higher.

From Pos 4 to Plawangan was the real challenge. We had to pass 7 hills. The last one is called “Bukit Penyesalan”. It is an endless road. An eerie feeling start to poke me. We had to turned on our head lamp since the night had come. We did not know when we get the rest area. The “Bukit Penyesalan” really give us regret and suck our hope. But the thing that we can do is keep moving. Eventually we got the camp site at 8pm, means we need 11 hours to get there. Our porter set up the tent and cooked some meal. The wind really strong because our tent location was near from the cliff.

In the morning, the wind still has its power. haha. It took me 30 minutes until I decided to to out. Evidently, it was not that cold. I was surprised by the view, on the right side I got the sunrise view and on the left side I got mountain and lake view. What a beautiful creation of God.

Our first plan for summit attack was at 1am in the morning, then become 6am, but the execution is 9am. -.-.

The path to the top of Rinjani was another story. The first obstacle was the cliff with a lot of sand. I hate sandy track! It required more stamina to pass this track, and the elevation was extremely high, about 70 degree. After reached the end of the cliff, we need to walk the long road to the peak, of course with its sandy track. It was really -really never ending track, but the view was amazing. I could see the see and the other mountain. And the lake could be seen even clearer from the top. I love the scenery but not the high. It reminded me that I have phobia with the high. haha.

I love the moment when we sleep by the lonely tree. The only tree we could find in the way. It gave us chilly air and shade to protect us from sun shine. May be we slept there for 30 minutes.

We continued our mission, but after several hours we decided to go back to camp site. The mist starting to cover the mountain. If we continue, we can get hypotermia and our gear is not really good. It was a tough decision. Our mission was to conquer the top, but no regret, we still have the moment. 😀

Amazing, it only took 2 hours to get the camp site. (we need 6 hour to get the highest stop before). We spent the rest of the day enjoying the sunset and sleeping, tomorrow we should leave this place.

In the morning I was shocked by an email that I need to go back to Jakarta really soon. I told the other my problem, and in a flash we were ready to go down to Sembalun. It took only 5 hours to the entrance gate. During the day, I tried to replied some email, book a tiket, call my friends to get help. What a day. Eventually I can arrive at airport in time. Mail, Rey, Restu, and Jaka continue their vacation to Gili.

Thanks Guyss…

Tips from newbie :

  • Beside some standard gear for climbing, please bring along some masker. It is very dusty.
    Take some weeks to prepare your self, do some workout! Except you are a runner or regularly go to gym.
  • Rinjani track is really long compared to other mount (info from my friends). It is really exhausting.
  • Sembalun in the easiest track. You can start your hike from Bawak Nao after registering on gate.
  • If you are a newbie who want to ‘summit’, take a long program at minimum 4d3n. It should be sufficient.
  • Dont take 3d2n :D.
  • Dont bring a lot of stuf! Spend some money to hire a porter, he can helps you as guide and chef.
  • Be ready for dehydration and hypotermia.
  • If you need a driver in Lombok, you can contact Mas Ryo.
    Good Luck!

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