4th Day in Indonesia, East Java (Ijen Crater)
From 3rd Day in Indonesia, Surabaya (Mt. Bromo to Ijen), after an overnight at Catimor Homestay, we proceed our trip to visit the impressive Ijen Crater ....
BLAWAN → PALTUDING → IJEN CRATER → ARABICA COFFEE PLANTATION
We woke up early at 3am. Checked out from the guesthouse, to continue our trip to Paltuding, which is the entrance of Ijen Plateau. Breakfasts had already been readied for us to bring along. At around 4:30am, we reached Paltuding. We were told that we have to hike about 2km to reach the summit of the crater. Before the hike we went to toilet, there wasn't any electrical point in the toilet, it's good if readied with little torchlight in the dark.
I bought some lollypops, thinking of to share some joys with local children. But it became a burden to me during the hike-up. I am so grateful to Bapak Tommy for helping me to carry my backpack. He suggested to give some candies to sulfur miners; they would be very happy with just a little candy.
According to Bapak Tommy, wages of miners are much more higher than ordinary worker. But their works are relatively tougher than ordinary worker. They have to carry the sulfur rock by two rattan basket weighted around 80kg on their shoulder. Usually, they are carrying the rocks from the mining site which is laid on the top of Mountain Ijen, down to Paltuding for several rounds. They work everyday for two weeks, and stay in the hut at the mountain. After their working weeks, usually they would go back home to rest for 2 weeks.
When we were near to the summit, we could smelt pungent air, even with mask on our face. Just imagine, the load is heavy; some do not even have mask on the face. They toiled for living, for their families, even they have to pay a cost of that may harm their body.
While we were climbing the mountain, we could see a very beautiful landscape of another mountain; it’s Mt Madura.
Reached the summit by 7am,When the wind blew, we could only see blur smoky view. After the smokes spread-out, we saw a beautiful turquoise crater lake and the smoky sulphur mining in the edge of the crater. We followed a small and precipitous path to go down to the crater lake.
We met the friends from Hong Kong They were getting around with a group of youngster from one of the Indonesian university; surprisingly the Indonesian guy sang a Mandarin song of 庾澄庆《情非得己》.
We took a lot of beautiful photos of the crater lake, and also photos of the traditional sulphur miners doing their works. The crater usually will be closed at 2pm for the reason that the thick smoke from the crater is poisonous. We took the same route back to the foot of the mountain.
At about 10am, we were back to the Paltuding, Mount. Ijen entrance and continued our journey to Tretes. On a short distance after we left Mount Ijen, we reached a coffee plantation farm. We stopped for a while to take some photos. And it’s great to taste the fruit of the coffee tree, it’s sweet.
Expenses on this journey:
*Tips to Bapak Tommy – Rp10k
~~... to be continued for Day 4 Trip to Indonesia, East Java, Tretes ... ~~