Friday, October 2, 2015

First Hiking Experience - Mt.Ijen

Finally got down to sorting the photos from my first hiking adventure at Mt.Ijen and its all thanks to Garuda Indonesia, Nuffnang & Wonderful Indonesia that I got the opportunity to experience this! 

Before I start sharing my personal experience, 
I would like to urge everyone to buy proper hiking gears prior to the visit. 

> Hiking boots & socks to prevent slips and sores. 
> Water + Snacks (Chocolates, biscuits, energy bars) 
> Torchlight to help you see in the dark 
> Windbreaker
> Gloves to hold on to the rocks as you go down the crater
> Most importantly, camera to capture all the precious memories!!

Our overnight hike started at 1.30AM from the base camp and it was so cold (I may have a lower tolerance), I was trembling even under my thermal, fleece jacket & windbreaker!!! D: Thankfully, my body warmed up as we started the hike and I got used to the temperature quickly. 

We hiked in total darkness and our only light source came from our torchlights but that also meant that we could clearly see the moon and zillions of twinkling stars all over the sky! I've never seen THAT many stars in my entire life add together as compared to that night D: 

These pictures do not do justice to the beautiful night skies of Mt.Ijen at all and you can only see it for yourself to believe. 

The hike may be physically demanding for those who rarely exercise so bear in mind to take occasional breaks whenever you need it. Pace yourself and listen to your body. 

After a 1.5 hour hike and another 45 minutes or so to get down to the foot of the crater, this was the view that greeted me. I've seen so many pictures of the legendary Blue Sulphur Flames on the internet but nothing like seeing it WITH MY OWN EYES.  

Honestly, the journey down the crater was pretty scary as the tracks were not only narrow, steep, and slippery, we had to do this in the DARK. On several occasions, I had to risk falling off the cliff to make way for the sulphur miners D: The darkness also amplified my anxiety but the thought of getting to the Blue Flames kept pushing me on and I eventually made it! Never say no too early. 

Breath-taking, majestic, spectacular, you get my drift. 

These may seem like a set of blur and grainy photos to you but they are my favourite memory and also an accomplishment. 

I climbed up and down around the crater to get various perspectives of the Blue Fire and most times, I get so fascinated I unknowingly go "WHAAAA" to myself.  

I stood quietly and observed the soaring Blue Flames until it eventually died down. 

The sulphur gas may cause discomfort so we were encouraged to rent a gas mask at the rim of the crater but I didn't use mine in the end because we were lucky enough that the wind was blowing in a direction that brought the hazardous gas away from us that day. 

The skies starting to lit up at sunrise! 

My shoes were covered with dust, trek pants trapped with dirt, got some scratches on my hands, but all these didn't matter at all because I accomplished what I set out to do! 

Kawah Ijen at dawn

The hike honestly wasn't that bad after all, judging that I was still in the mood to apply some lip tint for selfies haha. Also got to thank Browhaus (Brow Resurrection) for giving me super pretty semi-permanent brows that requires very minimal touch ups!  

Making our way back up to the crater rim. 

One of the many sulphur miners I met. 

Proud of you for overcoming your fears and persevering till the end! 

Climbing up was definitely a lot easier because we could now see whats ahead of us. 

Almost there!! 

& here we are! :D 

One with some of the girls who made it! :D 

The picturesque view that we saw as we arrived at the crater rim

Perfect golden hour calls for more pictures! 

One with the awesomest blog manager - Amantha <3 

Pretty Jess!

Time to walk down the mountain! Or rather, slide :| 
The journey down is extremely steep and slippery, so guys, please get proper hiking shoes! 

We still had a scenic view for company (: 

Our battered shoes at the end. Got these from Columbia (Kids) for only $90+ but they must be the most practical shoes I've gotten. 

If you would like to plan a visit there as well, Garuda is having a promotion! 
At only $350 (All inclusive) you get a round trip ticket!

Departure: Singapore - Bali - Banyuwangi (Mt.Ijen) 
Return: Surabaya - Singapore 

Tickets are available for purchase at Garuda Ticketing Office (101 Thomson Road #12-03, United Square) or via the reservation hotline 62502888

Quote "GANuffnang" for the promotion!

In addition to the flight promo, you can contact Trisno from Diorama Travel Management for land tours as well! > 

Travel insurance is a must whenever I travel and for this trip, I am insured by ACE Travel Insurance! Enjoy 20% off single trip plans and 10% off annual plans when you purchase from this link HERE
Promotion is valid until 11th October. 
(Not applicable to basic plan or Malaysia, Bintan or Batam) 

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