KAWAH IJEN – BLUE FIRE AND LAKE FILLED WITH SULPHURIC ACID

in travel •  11 months ago

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It is wide known that Indonesia has A LOT volcanoes and one of the volcanos around is Mt. Ijen. Mt. Ijen is beautiful reminder of how wonderful world we have.

Our East Java Trip was composed of 2 parts, the first part was Mt. Bromo and 2nd part was Mt. Ijen.

After leaving Mt. Bromo, together with my husband, we headed to Mt. Ijen. The travel time took 5-6 hours.

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On the way to Bondowoso town.

Upon reaching the Ijen area, we stayed at hostel in Bondowoso town. We spent 1 night before we hike to Mount Ijen.

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A cup of coffee first in cold weather

WOKE UP EARLY HEADED TO MOUNT IJEN CRATER.
We wake up 1:00am and left the homestay to go to Paltuding area.
We need to start early so we can witness the famous blue flame before sunrise.
The Ijen blue fire can be seen clearly in the darkness.

It tooked 30 minutes to reach Paltuding from our lodging. (Paltuding is the place where you can get the permit before hiking to Ijen.)

We were surprised to the huge number of tourists around the area. The queue for getting permit was very long. We were so lucky that our driver/ tour guide has a connection inside so that we can easily get the permit.

Note: Even the toilet facilities had a long queue and I recommend to use toilet first before you leave your homestay. :)

THE TREK.
Hiking began. To be able to reach the Ijen lake, we must trek to the top and then descend to the crater.
Our guide provided us the gas masks for us wear for protection. It was prevention to breath the toxic Sulphur from the volcano.

Don’t forget to bring flashlights/ headlamp. It was dark during the trail and will be difficult if you will only depend on the other hikers' or guide’s flashlights.

It took around 1.5 – 2 hours when we reached the Ijen summit with most are uphill.
If you want to see the blue flame, you need to go down near the crater. The downhill was very steep and you need to be careful each steps that you take especially it was very dark.

While going down, I was surprised that some of sulphur miners are already there to extract sulphur. This is a very difficult and dangerous job.

We took downhill in about 30-40 minutes.

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AT LAST.
We finally saw the blue flames. The gases from the volcano cracks at high pressure and temperature, when they come in contact with the air, they ignite and sending flames.

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SULPHUR MINERS.
Sulphur miners collecting sulphurs. They cut the sulphur pieces and put it into the basket. Each basket weigh around 40-50 kg.
They need to carry it to the top of the crater. Once reach to the top, some miners will use small trolleys to descend the sulphur to the foot of the volcano. Normally, they have two trips per day. They will sell the sulphur and can earn around $ 10 per day.

P2070153.JPGIt was seriously a difficult and dangerous job.

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We stayed near the crater area for about 1 hour to see closely the green color crater lake.
Kawah Ijen Crater Lake is the world’s largest body of water filled with hydrochloric acid.

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Around 6:30 in the morning, we went back to the the Ijen summit. During our ascend, we came across with the miners carrying the basket of sulphur.
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My husband @mostvulnerable tried to lift the baskets but it was very heavy.

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Once we reach the summit, we rested few minutes to enjoy the view and starts descend.

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It was indeed a very memorable experience.

What to Bring for the trek:

  • Flash Lights/ Head lights
  • Warm Clothes as it was really cold
  • Hiking boots/ shoes
  • Trail Food/ Water
  • Camera
  • Gas mask/ mask

Thank you for taking time to read my blog!

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