Steep volcanic scree and ash make the climb hard, but the summit is within sight
Passing through rolling grasslands on the very lower slopes of Mount Rinjani
This is where the climbing starts to get harder.
Camping here for the night.... just above the cloud line
A narrow edge... volcano caldera to one side, and the steep slope up which you climbed to the other
Crater Lake is over 200 metres deep... you can swim and fish here!
When you feel that you can't make it, your mountain guide will offer encouragement and show you the way
Camping alongside the lake is an amazing experience
With sunrise coming, you can see the awesome shadow of Rinjani off into the distance
A new caldera is forming within Mount Rinjani... still active today!
This is the hardest section of the climb... just 300 metres to go!
You made it! Looking deep into the caldera of Mount Rinjani
The 360 degree panorama is just beautiful
You are so high you can see clouds forming around the Crater Rim far below you
That ridge is what you have just walked across to get to the summit
Having made it to the summit, it is back to the Crater Rim camp site for a full breakfast
Spectacular views back to the camp site perched on the Crater Rim of Mount Rinjani
The most recent eruption of Mount Rinjani reshaped the entire caldera
About Mount Rinjani volcano
At 3,726 metres, Mount Rinjani is Indonesia’s second highest volcano.
Located at the very north of Lombok island (just 45km from Bali), Mount Rinjani volcano is an active volcano, with a caldera measuring 8.5km by 6km (that’s 50 square kilometres!) and which is partially filled with water, Mount Rinjani has become famous around the world as one of the best volcano climbs anywhere.Last erupting in September 2016, Mount Rinjani is one of 129 active volcanoes within Indonesia and sits atop the Sunda Arc, home of some of the most explosive and dangerous volcanoes. The Sunda Arc is also knowns as the ‘Pacific Ring of Fire’, a fault line stretching from the western hemisphere right through Japan and on into south east Asia.Rinjani’s profile changes, depending on where you are standing… from the west, she appears to be nothing more than a broken mountain range due to the shape of the caldera, but from the east, it is very obvious from the steep conical shape that she is a volcano.Within the caldera is located a 230 metre deep lake, which, as of September 2016, shows the growing cone of another volcano, known locally as ‘Baby Rinjani’. This cone regularly emits ash and smoke into the sky, and has been the cause of several disruptions to air travel within the region.Thought to have been originally created in 1257, with “the largest volcanic eruption since humans learned to read and write”, and is likely to have caused a period of global climate cooling and subsequent failed harvests, Mount Rinjani is very imposing, dominating the entire landscape of the island of Lombok.
The lower sections of Mount Rinjani are covered in tall grasses, which gradually give way to shorter tuft grasses as your altitude increases. On some of the steeper sections, the slopes are very heavily wooded, and tropical and sub-tropical jungle and trees can be found on the western and northern sides, particularly around the Senaru village area. The vegetation in this area is particularly dense and difficult to traverse if you leave the established walking trails.Once above the tree line, the landscape becomes suddenly quite barren, with the earth covered mostly by grasses only, with the occasional tree clinging to life. On the steep scree and ash slopes, there is no plant life to speak of, as the ground is quite sharp and contains little ability for the ash to hold moisture.
Animal life can be hard to spot while in the heavily wooded areas around Mount Rinjani as the vegetation is so dense, but as you find open areas, birds of an endless variety can be seen, including cockatoos, parrots, honey eaters, tits, weavers and a wide variety of finches.The long tailed Macaque is a common sight right to the very summit of the volcano, often harassing visitors for food. (Please do not feed them!)
The lower slopes of Mount Rinjani are tropical to sub-tropical, with temperatures between 20 and 40 degrees Celcius, depending on where you are in relation to Mount Rinjani. Senaru village, located on the very northern slopes of Mount Rinjani is very humid and hot, especially when in among the trees or deeper valleys.As you climb higher, the temperature drops rapidly, and around the Crater Rim area is quite cold, falling to as low as 8 or 9 degrees Celcius.At the summit, cold weather wind-proof clothing is essential!Due to the height of Mount Rinjani, it creates its own weather, but once you are above the tree-line, there is little rain (though this can change in an instant)