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Published: April 19th 2012
Tom and I have just completed a 3 day / 2 night trek of Mt Rinjani, which is the second highest active volcano in Indonesia, the summit sits at over 3,700 metres. We booked the trip with three Canadian guys that Tom met at the surf camp and a couple of other Europeans joined our group. The first few hours started off pretty easy with a nice relaxed stroll from our base in Senaru through a forest area. After stopping for a lunch of noodles and making friends with some old guys from Jakarta who sorted us out with treats, we set off on the afternoons trek which we were told from our guide, Bas, would be a lot more difficult. A few hours later and Bas wasn't wrong, we were climbing from a starting point of 600m to 2600m, up to the crater rim in one day which for me was a massive test on the calves! Tom on the other hand found it pretty ok (or so he said) apart from his old knees which gave him a bit of trouble. After climbing for what seemed like a never ending amount of time we made it to the camp
site at the crater rim. The views from the crater rim down to the lake and volcano were fantastic, was a nice feeling being above the clouds. After a dinner of more rice and noodles everyone was pretty tired so we headed off to our tents at around 7pm!
I wasn't sleeping for long when I woke up to the sound of Tom being sick out the tent! Turns out the rice we had for dinner didn't sit too well with him and he spent most of the night waking up to be sick! In true trooper fashion he made a speedy recovery after breakfast and we got set for the next day of trekking. The day started with a difficult trek down a narrow trail to the crater lake. Once we treked down the crater rim we were rewarded with a swim in the nice cool fresh water lake which sits 2000m above sea level. The views of the lake and Mt Rinjani in the background, again were fantastic. There were some local guys down there fishing and we decided to buy some fish from them to try to make our evening meal a little more exciting!
After the lake we set off on our trek again, climbing up to the other side of the crater rim, another 700m. We reached the camp site and it wasn't long before we were greeted by the local monkeys keen to steal whatever we had on offer. We had another early night as we had to get up at 2.30am in order to start our climb up to the summit. Our guide Bas, again didn't hold back on saying how difficult it was and again he was right. We spent over three hours climbing up thick black ash which was like climbing a sand dune, feet constantly sinking and slipping. It was extremely steep, in the dark, it wasn't worth thinking about what would happen if you fell. I again moaned a lot which encouraged Tom to get up the mountain as fast as he could away from me which then encouraged me to go faster so I had someone to moan to! 3.5hours later and we made it up just in time for the sun rise. The 360 degrees view over Lombok were incredible, well worth the 3 days of pain. We spent the rest of the day treking
back down as fast as we could to make the last boat to the Gili's, it was nice to finally be going downhill.
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