THE RINJANI TREK
Mt Rinjani, located in Lombok island, Indonesia, is the second highest mountain in Indonesia (at 3726 meters height). It is a volcano, with huge crater lake and smaller active volcano inside it. The trekking tour usually consists of viewing the crater's rim, lake, hot spring, cave and summit. Depending on how many days you have for the tour, you could spend the night on the rims (there are two rims: Senaru Rim (Rim I) and Sembalun Rim (Rim II) or at the lake.
Actually, There are many routes up the mountain, but the main access is from Senaru in the north and Sembalun Lawang to the east. The challenging three-day Rinjani Trek route from Senaru to the crater rim (Plawangan), down to the stunning Lake then on to Sembalun Lawang, is considered one of the best treks in South East Asia or the 3-day Rinjani Trek that includes the climb to the summit and usually begins in Sembalun Lawang.
Mt Rinjani is quite a tough mountain and needs extra level of fitness to pass all of the treks. Safety measurements are minimum. Trekking path are steep, sometimes slippery or become like small rivers if rain falls uphill. Most serious injuries are caused by falling from the cliff and hypothermia. Most tour operators are very cautious about the guests' fitness (since it'll affect their reputation badly), and offer detours or a shorter trek if you could not manage to finish your full treks.
Rinjani Trek Ecotourism Program has received the following International and National Awards;
The World Legacy Award sponsored by International Conservation and National Geographic Traveler, June 2004 The Award for Innovative Ecotourism from the Ministry of Tourism, September 2004
A finalist in the Tourism for Tomorrow Destination Awards, April 2005
Summary of the treks:
- Sembalun Lawang - Pos 2 Tengengean: Mostly is savanna, with mild rising trek
- Pos 2 Tengengean - Pada Balong: Steep climb with soil trek, forest area
- Pada Balong - Plawangan 2: At the back of the mountain, with cliffs on left and right side, sandy trek
- Plawangan 2 - Summit: 45 degrees or more of sandy trek with cliffs on left and right side
- Plawangan 2 - Lake camp area: Steep climb with huge rocks trek (1-2 meters height)
- Lake camp area - Plawangan 1: Steep climb with huge rocks trek (1-2 meters height)
- Plawangan 1 - Pos 3 Mondokan Lolak: Steep climb with loose sandy trek (slippery when wet)
- Pos 3 Mondokan Lolak - Pos 2 Montong Satas: Forest area, soil / mud track, with mild rising trek
What to Bring:
- Enough clothes for the trekking. Make sure you wear dry clothes. Wrap in water proof container (flash rain, mist, and river crossing may wet your clothes). Don't bring too much because there's no place to bathe and it's heavy. Leave your bathe packs behind.
- Tissue. To go to toilet / recomended wet tissue
- Jogging pants preferably water proof, to keep your feet warm.
- Extra socks.
- Wind breaker, preferably water proof. Weather is cold, but heavy wind makes it worse. Thick jacket makes you sweat a lot during hiking and heavy.
- Rain coat
- Flash light. It's a must. The summit trek starts at 2AM, with lights only from your flash light.
- Optional hiking shoes, unless your sport shoe can handle a lot of sand. For a multi-day trek strong boots are highly recommended.
- Optional - Bird book and binoculars, though on most treks the itinerary leaves time only for opportunistic bird watching. Best areas for bird watching are around the crater lake and in the jungle on the Senaru side. If you want to do serious bird watching it is preferable to arrange a trek for that specific purpose, off the main trek routes (which are very busy at high season) and with a guide who knows the best places to go.
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