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Friday, May 20, 2011

Papandayan: Active Mountain with Many Crater

Coordinates: 7°19′S 107°44′E

Go to Papandayan in Map

Located on the Indonesian Island of Java, sub-district Cisurupan, Garut region, West Java-Indonesia. This volcano is situated precisely 19 km from Garut city or 70 km southeast from Bandung. The mountain has it altitude of 2665 meters above sea level. Papandayan Mountain is located to the out most south of other mountain expanding in southern area of Bandung city. It is a very popular mountain.
The Papandayan crater view from residential
The Papandayan crater view from residential

Mount Papandayan is a large composite volcano, it is a crater-filled semi-active volcano. In 1772, one side of the volcano exploded and avalanche surrounding the 40 villages, destroying them completely. Over 3,000 villagers were killed. The volcano is still considered very dangerous and much of the surrounding area is restricted, especially considering there have been smoke, tremors and minor eruptions in 1923, 1942, plus several, all increasing in strength, in 2002.

The 1772 eruption has also truncated the volcano into a broad shape with two peaks and a flat 1.1 km wide of Alun-Alun crater in the middle. It looks like a twin volcano. One of the peaks is called Papandayan and the other is Mount Puntang.

Papandayan's Garut region is very exotic mountain, even from it's very first. Recorded in 1910, Officieel Touristen Bureau, Weltevreden, the Government of the Netherlands East Indies, called the Garut as Paradijs van het Oosten (heaven from the east). In this era, the various supporting facilities for easy access to visit such as the railroad was built to connect the Rail Station of Cibatu and Cikajang Station. Natural beauty and friendliness of the local peoples make Garut get the nickname Switzerland van Java by Charlie Caplin at his two tour in 1927 and 1933. Even the Dutch queen, Wilhelmina, has ever had a rest place in the city.

The Path to Papandayan Peak - Indonesia Mountain Tours
The Path to the Peak

The peak of this most spectacular volcanoes in the province are easily reaches, because there are special road leading to the crater. The access path to the mountain is easy with any vehicle. Public buses take you only to within 9 km of the crater, so you either have to walk the rest of the way or take an ojek (private motorbike with driver).

Papandayan Golden Crater Papandayan Greeny Lake ColorPapandayan Nangklak Crater Manuk Crater at Other Side of Papandayan (Kamojang)
Golden Crater Baru Crater Nangklak Crater Manuk Crater
At the summit of Mount Papandayan, there are famous four large craters, and it contains active fumarole fields. These craters is the Kawah Mas (Golden Crater), Kawah Baru (New Crater), Nangklak Crater, and Manuk crater. Craters are continued to release of steam.
Mt. Papandayan Bubbling Mud Pools - Indonesia Mountain Tours
Bubbling Mud Pools

Tourists can walk across the crater and view phenomena such as bubbling mud pools, steam vents and sulfur deposits. The bubbling yellow crater (Kawah Papandayan or Papandayan Crater) is a popular view. Local people named it with Kawah Emas/Mas (or Golden Crater). Above that crater is the Elfin forest and several meadows with the Javanese edelweiss.

Papandayan Golden Crater - Indonesia Mountain Tours
Golden Crater

Dried and Burned Trees at Papandayan Mountain
Burned Trees

Enjoying a hikes in Papandayan Mountain as well as the view of its natural beauty is a truly amazing experience. For those of you who hasn’t had the chance to visit Papandayan Mountain, you will see dried and burned trees and also smokes coming out from the ground and the mountains cracked wall. There are also other natural phenomenon that we usually encounter during the trip such as gas burst. What we should always be caution for is the soil which is very unstable.

New Crater as Lake Color on Papandayan Peak - Indonesia Mountain Tour
New Crater as Lake Color on Papandayan Peak
After that, we will arrive at the Lake of Colors (Telaga Warna). This lake has a greenish colors and gives out a strong gas stench. Actually this lake is a New Crater (known also as Kawah Baru). At the top of the mountain, our feelings should be filled with joy and happiness as if we were above the clouds for the moment. This is also one of the places where you can see the rare flower Edelweiss—this flower only grow on certain places and certain height—which most people would call it “the immortal flower” due to its nature which never withered and has its own signature aroma.

Mount Papandayans crater is probably one of the most spectacular mountain scenes on Java Island. There is a Cangkuang temple situated by Cangkuang Lake, which was a major discovery of archaeological value as it was the first of its kind found in West Java, dating back to the 8th century.

The reason for tourists to come here is because peoples can go from the bottom to the summit and then comes back down within a day only. So if people start early in the morning from Bandung, he would reached the top by mid-day, and then comes back at noon. Although, you should keep in mind the importance of a guide due to the mountain’s active status. This mountain erupted for sometime, leaving the surrounding nature burnt by the hot steam it emits. The damage made by the eruption turned the view of the surrounding in to a unique and rare to see. So, if you’re happen to be in Bandung or Garut, make sure to stop by, because it’s worthed every effort.

Torist who wants to go to the top has two ways up. First, they can go through Pengalengan, Bandung. And second, they can go through Cisurupan, which is in Garut district.

Papandayan Sunrise - Indonesia Mountain
Papandayan Sunrise
  1. If we wanted a faster trip, we can start from Garut and use Cisurupan road. This road had already been covered by asphalt, making it possible to use land transportation. Start from Garut city to the south in 30 minutes, then through Samarang toward Cisurupan. In Cisurupan junction, turn right along the village road (with good pavement) which continues uphill to an altitude of 2300 meters above sea level to the Nature Reserve of Papandayan with devious road and views of potatoes garden and a beautiful pine forest. But this way is only until we have reached uptown of Salada (Pondok Saladah). We are obliged to ask for a guide to lead us to the top.
  2. From Pengalengan district, Bandung; through the entrance which lies in the village of Pakenjeng, Pamulihan District which is the most common entrance often passed by the climbers. Arriving in the village of Pakenjeng, we still have to walk towards the feet of Papandayan mountain at the same time to the registration post. It's a fairly far distance, approximately 8-10 km (according to the information from local people) with uphill road.

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Known Basic Techniques for Mountain Climbing

If you’re looking for a fun with mountain climbing and is fully decided to try mountain climbing, here are some tips that can help you reach the peak.

1) Decide your route for climbing to the mountain peak. Get the best climbing way that is most suitable for you and your entourage. Give attention to choose a mountain that is appropriate for the climbing technique you will apply. For example, if you are using rock climbing techniques then choose a mountain that has a low-rising footpath. In that way, you won’t be scraping your knees along the edges as much. If you also choose to hike through the summit but one that has overhanging ice, you won’t be able to reach the top.

2) You must be aware that with each step you take, the terrain you've to climbs gets steeper. Therefore, there is less oxygen and the climate gets harsher. Each step you take in mountain climbing is more difficult.

3) Equip yourself with the proper tool. You can get these at any outdoor sports store. May be in some junkyards or yard sales you can also found these tools. But if you are investing in mountain climbing activity, then you might as well get first-hand climbing gears.

Your mountain climbing tools should include the following:
  • backpack,
  • pair of climbing boots,
  • warm coat,
  • climbing map,
  • canteen to be filled with enough water,
  • first aid kit,
  • flashlight,
  • sunscreen,
  • sunglasses,
  • food that would last you during your entire mountain climbing excavation,
  • friend or mountain climbing companion, just never did the mountain climbing alone.
Making a checklist for the mountain climbing tools is very helpful.

You can also bring a light rifle (to protect yourself from wild beasts out on the mountain) and enough ammunition. If you’re mountain ice climbing, bring an ice axe and warm clothing. The rope will be very useful, so don't forget to carry enough ropes.

You’re actually climbing the mountain, so you have to get to it first. Upon arriving at the base of the mountain, you have to know what you’re doing before you start out the mountain climbing. Always be safe with each step that you take in the mountain climbing. Keep your ice axe within reach of your hand just in case the situation suddenly difficult and calls for it.

Everytime-everywhere you have to did mountain climbing, always remember not to get hypothermia, don’t get lost and don’t panic. These are a couple of key rules in the mountain climbing. Most importantly, it must have for fun.

Adapted from

Friday, April 8, 2011

Mount Singgalang

Coordinates: 0°23′24″S 100°19′51″E

Goto Singgalang Mountain Map

Singgalang Mountain Seen from Mount Marapi
Singgalang Seen from Marapi
Mount Singgalang formerly is a stratovolcano. But it has long been inactive. Unlike it's neighbour, Mount Marapi (Merapi), it is very old and extinct. No historical record for the volcanic activity of Mount Singgalang. It is a twin with Mount Tandikat, which is located to the south-southwest of Singgalang. However, Tandikat has had historical volcanic activity.
(Merapi in West Sumatra is different from Merapi in Central Java).

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Huge Crater Has Become an Exotic Highland: Dieng Plateau

Coordinate: 7.2°S-109.9°E / 7°12′0″S, 109°54′0″ E

Goto Dieng Highland Map
Dieng Highland Gate - Indonesian Mountain
Tourist Area Gate of Dieng Plateau

The highest highland in the world is Tibetan Plateau. The average elevation is over 4,500 meters, and all 14 of the world's 8000 meters and higher peaks are found in this region. Sometimes it called "the roof of the world," it is also the biggest plateau in the world with an area of 2.5 million square kilometers, about four times the size of France country (Wikipedia).

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mount Bromo, An Exciting Volcano

Coordinates: 7°56′30″S 112°57′00″E / 7.94167°S 112.95°E / -7.94167; 112.95

Goto Mount Bromo Map

Mountain Bromo is the white-plumed, higest: Mount Semeru - Indonesian Mountain
Bromo is the white-plumed, higest: Mt. Semeru, front: Mt. Batok
Mount Bromo is an active stratovolcano and has a height of 2.329 meters (7.848 ft) above sea level. It is located in four regions, namely Probolinggo, Pasuruan, Lumajang, and Malang (East Java, Indonesisa). It is included in Tengger massif (also included in Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park). From the Juanda International Airport, Mount Bromo was about 65.9 kilometers (40.95 miles) away.

Mount Bromo us the most well known one, but it's not the highest peak at Tengger. The highest peak at Tengger massif is Mount Batok. The Body shape of Mount Bromo is mesh between valleys and canyons with the caldera or the sea of sands covering some 10 square kilometers. Mount Bromo has a crater with a diameter of ± 800 feets (north-south) and ± 600 meters (east-west). The danger area is a circle with a radius of 4 km from the central crater of Bromo.

Indonesia's Mount Bromo Eruption 2010
November, 26th 2010 eruption
The eruption of Mount Bromo is very often. According to it history, Mount Bromo have erupted at 2010, 2004, 2001, 1995, 1984, 1983, 1980, 1972, 1956, 1955, 1950, 1948, 1940, 1939, 1935, 1930, 1929, 1928, 1922, 1921, 1915, 1916, 1910, 1909, 1907, 1908, 1907, 1906, 1907. But the eruption characteristics of Mount Bromo is low volcanic (effusive), not like Merapi that is high volcanic (explosive). In the event of an eruption, Bromo vomited material in the form of sand and ash. Therefore, the sea of sands is formed.

Indonesia's Mount Bromo Eruption Early 2011
January, 22nd 2011 eruption
The last eruption sequences start in 2010, on Friday 26 November 2010. The Bromo Caldera was still active in late January 2011, the activity being characterised by fluctuating ongoing eruptions. Since 19 December, 2010 volcanic ash and incandescent material had been thrown up by eruptive activity resulting in a heavy rain of materials that fell around the crater.

The 1974's eruption was the greatest in the history of Mount Bromo. However, the radius of it eruption is 'only' 6-10 kilometers. Local people only use the traditional cap to protect themselves from rain of ashes. The danger things from the eruption is yellowish smokes from sulfur. This smoke can harm the human breathing.

Hindu's Temple at Bromo Mountain - Indonesia Mountain
The building at the desert is a Hindus temple
Alike with Mount Agung, Mount Bromo is very strong with religious nuances. For the residents of Bromo, Tengger tribe, Mount Brahma (Bromo), believed to be a sacred mountain. At the sands sea of foothill, we can met the Hindus temple.

Once a year the Tengger community held a ceremony Yadnya Kasada or Kasodo. The ceremony was held at a temple that is located under the foothill of Mount Bromo. On the fourteenth day of this Hindus festival, the Tenggerese people travel up the mountain in order to make offerings of fruit, rice, vegetables, flowers and sacrifices of livestock to the mountain gods by throwing them into the caldera of the volcano. The origin of the ritual is a legend from the 15th century.

The sea ​​of ​​sands is the uniqueness of Mount Bromo, where in this section is not overgrown with plants. At this area, the tourists often ride horse to enjoy their journeys. Temperature of Bromo region is between 5-14 Celsius degrees. From the deserts of Bromo we can go up to Mount Batok, the Mountain Kursi, as well as Mount Pananjakan. In the region of Mount Bromo are often found the very amazing panoramic views.

To go to Mount Bromo from Juanda international airport, you have to find a bus majors to Probolinggo regency.
  1. if you get down in Pasuruan, you must choose to cease down at Wonokitri village, district of Tosari, Pasuruan. From here you can continue the journey towards Mt. Penanjakan first, or go to the sea of sands and then to the summit of Mt. Bromo. Mt. Pananjakan is the best viewpoint to Mt. Bromo.
  2. if your trip end at Probolinggo regency, you must ensure that you was ended at Ngadisari village, district of Sukapura. From Ngadisari village, the Cemoro Lawang town, gateway to the desert around Mount Bromo, is only 3 kilometers. This is the major access point.

The other way, you can go to Mt. Bromo through Malang regency. From this, you must select the transport majors to Tumpang.

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How to Prevent Hypothermia

Hypothermia is a condition when a person is so cold that the body temperature drops below normal, any body temperature then lower than 35.0 °C/95.0 °F (Wikipedia). He or she starts shivering and cannot stop, then becomes confused and acts strange. Their words don't make sense and soon becomes very tired.

If you going to climb the mountain, you must know exactly everything that could making hypothermia. Knowledge about how to prevents it happening, what needs to be done and also what action needs to be done if you start to feel cold is very important.

Below are guide to prevent hypothermia in the mountains:
  1. Do not forget to brings the mountain climbing equipments, such as the type of compass, shoes, costumes, and others that are recommended.
  2. Do not wear cotton shirts. When it wet, cotton will be hard to dry. This often causes shivering despite wearing a thick jacket. We recommends that you use synthetic materials, such as polyester,nylon, which absorbs sweat and it must long-sleeved.
  3. Bring enough stock to go climbs the mountain. Practical foodstuffs such as muesli bars, dairy products (chocolate bars, milk and yogurt), oatmeal or energy booster is very useful as a mild food reserves to carry and produce decent energies
  4. Keep your body to stays dry and warm. Bring a poncho, however its condition. If possible, use the waterproof shirt and jacket. Do not forget to also carrying gloves and socks and its backup.
  5. Bring emergency communications tools, not a mobile phone. There is often no signal for mobile phones. Carry the emergency signal equipments such as a whistle or mirror.
  6. Do not force yourself to continue to run if you are tired and exhausted. Take a break and put the tent. Create a food or beverages that is fast to be served.
  7. Carry an emergency blanket or space blanket. Maybe this equipment has not been a lot. It shaped like a thin layer of aluminum foil and used to wrap the body. It function is to make the body keep warm, reflected sunlight and to avoid the rain. This space blanket reflects back the body heat.
  8. Do not forget to carries the temporary body warmer. It's a kind of body tape used when you was chilled. It usually used to doing extreme sports on snow.

And the last but not least, always pay attention to the any clues when you will climb the mountain.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mount Agung at Bali Island

Coordinates: 8°20′31.2″S 115°30′28.8″E / 8.342°S 115.508°E / -8.342; 115.508

Goto Mount Agung Map
Mount Agung Indonesia Mountain at Bali

Mount Agung is the highest mountain on the island of Bali. The mountain is located in the district of Rendang, Karangasem regency and Bali province (Indonesia). It was about 58.59 kilometers (36.41 miles) from Ngurah Rai airport.

This mountain had erupted in 1963. As a result of the eruption, the height of the mountain which was originally 3.142 meters, reduced to 2.920 - 3.014 meters (approximately). It is the highest point at the Bali island and is classified as stratovolcano.

Mount Agung is sacred by the local peoples. The Balinese believe that Mount Agung is a replica of Mount Meru, a mythical place that supposed as the central axis of the universe. A legend holds that it mountain is a fragment of Mount Meru that was brought to Bali by the first Hindus. Bali's most sacred temple, Besakih actually sits on its slope.

The adventurous traveler can attempt to climb the volcano between July and October. For beginner and intermediate climbers, they must be sure to hire a guide, as the route is long, difficult and dangerous.

Mount Agung Indonesian Mountain at Bali
There are three routes up the mountain, ie:
  1. From the southeast through the village of Nangka can be reached from after the village of Budakeling. In Budakeling that is office for aide supervision of Mount Agung and can be reached by vehicles from Karangasem.
  2. From Besakih which proceeds to a higher peak and starts at approximately 1,100 m (3,610 ft), it's the common and easiest route used by climbers. Through this path, you would be treated with memorable view of Mount Agung from along the journey. You will also witness the local people who did worship regularly on Pura Besakih.
  3. The other one which commences higher is from Pura Pasar Agung, on the southern slope of the mountain, near Selat village (Pasar Agung) and which is reputed to take four hours. Typically the climbers stay overnight at Sangkan Kuasa.
There is no path between the routes at the top.

Mount Agung Overlay - Indonesia Mountain
Guides are available in Besakih and for the experienced climbers, the mountain can also be climbed without a guide. Although the pass way over Besakih temple is the easiest, it still quite tough. It is sometimes tackled as a single climb generally starting about 10.00pm for a dawn arrival at the peak and sometimes with an overnight camp about three quarters of the way up. It is far harder than the more popular Balinese climb up Gunung Batur. It is not a mountain that needs ropes and not quite high enough for altitude sickness (especially for professional climbers) but adverse weather conditions develop quickly and warm waterproof clothing is required and should be carried. Also, there is no water available along the route.

As a place that is considered sacred by the Hindus on Bali, the following are Things to Look For In Climbing Mount Agung
  1. In Bali, it is very strong traditional element in the spiritual life of religion. No attempt was made to climbs when there is any religious ceremony activity on Pura Besakih Temple or Pasar Agung. It is possible to maintain the sanctity of Mount Agung and Besakih or Pasar Agung that is be placed lower than the ascent.
  2. Weather should be a top priority in climbing safety. When it's rainy season or seasons that are not allowed to climb, better be undone to keep things that are not desired. Climbing fields consists of stones that would be more slippery than usual.
  3. For women who are menstruating, obligated to not climb. Remember that the Balinese very respect and uphold the sanctity of the Mount Agung and the surrounding area. We know about the myth that women who are menstruating are considered more dirty and of course if enforced to climb would result in less good for a climber. (Please do not believe this).
  4. It is recommended to not to bring food or drink that comes from beef. Cows are considered to be sacred animals by the Hindus.
  5. There is a myth to climb together in the number of evens.

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