On 12th of August 2017, me and my friends in Bali went to catch a sunrise from one of Balinese’s exotic, active Volcano, Mount Batur.
It all started when we met for a lunch the previous month, my friend, Michelle, introduced me to her sister, Angel, whom moved to Bali recently to live together with Michelle.
Angel, amazingly, told me about her past experiences in conquering Mount Prau and Mount Merbabu, both in Indonesia, and when I asked her about Mt. Batur, she told me that she hasn’t get the chance to climb Mount Batur, but she would love to.
Long story short, we decided to gather a group of friends to climb Mount Batur, and seek for a guide to accompany us.
I asked a balinese good friend, who studied at the same university and in the same class with me, Indhara, whether he knew someone who can take us to climb Mount Batur, and obviously, he did.
From here, we were introduced to a friend, Indra, who is skilled in climbing Mount Batur. He has climbed Mount Batur for countless times and it’s great to find a new connection and a friend.
From left to right: our group now consisted of 7 people, me, Indhara, Hendry (Michelle’s boyfriend), Michelle, Indra, and Angel, and KFC Sanur was decided to be the meeting point.
The equipment I brought were as above:
- a good quality trekking shoes / running shoes,
- A jacket,
- A jogger pants / training pants, I need to move comfortably and it’s warmer,
- A liter of mineral water or more (I brought 2 liter and only used up roughly a liter),
- Snacks for breakfast while watching the sunrise (Beef is not allowed),
- A mask, (very important)
- A pair of gloves (very important),
- A flashlight / headlamp,
- A raincoat, in case of raining, do check the local weather forecast (optional).
At 23:00, 11th of August 2017, we were all gathered at the designated meeting point and at around 01:00, we arrived at Mount Batur’s gate to park our car and preparing our gear.
Mount Batur has 2 entrance with different purposes.
One is through a forest, which mostly used by a group of student for school trip and by Balinese’s nature conservative community.
The other one is the most popular track for tourist, which is a paved road halfway through the top.
We were using the tourist track.
At 02:30, 12th of August 2017, after waiting for a while and ate some snacks, we then started to climb. There’s a reason for us to wait until 2:30 in the morning, because if we started too early, we might need to wait longer on top of Mount Batur and it’s freezing up there.
If you’re in a group with more than 10 people and have zero experience in climbing a mountain, then it’s safe to start earlier as you guys can get more resting time while climbing. Remember, smaller group means shorter time to climb (based on my experience with Mount Batur), because only a few people need to be taken care of.
The starting point was quite easy, as we were walking throught a paved road surrounded with trees.
Until we found a plank written “This way to the top of Mount Batur”, the rough climbing experience begin.
The track was filled with rock steps and slippery sand steps in between.
Why I recommending a shoes with good quality, a mask, and pair of gloves, because Michelle’s shoes’s sole were torn apart and it’s difficult to climb with a slippery shoes, the path itself is very dusty, so a mask is needed, and a pair of gloves to help reaching for the rocks without hurting your hands, and the gloves are also important to keep your hands warm.
Also, don’t forget to check the cloud level as well, we encountered a cloud mist while climbing for a few meters and it’s very hard to see the path.
At 05:30, after 3 hours of climbing, we managed to reach the top of Mount Batur.
Pic: the view from the top of Mount Batur. 3 other mountains could be seen from here, which are Mount Rinjani in Lombok Island (far behind), Mount Abang (the closest), and Mount Agung (tallest volcano in Bali, behind Mount Abang).
Pro tip #1, try to find a best spot to sit and do not leave that spot, because Mount Batur is always crowded with tourist and you won’t be able to comfortably watch the sunrise if you got nowhere to sit at.
Pro tip #2, try to leave as soon as the sun rises to avoid the “traffic”, the way down is much harder and lots of people will climb down altogether.
Pro tip #3, Do enjoy the Hot Spring after you have reached the starting point. It is located nearby the entrance gate of Mount Batur, try to ask the people there if you’re not sure. Relaxing your muscle in the hot spring after climbing a volcano is the perfect idea. (unfortunately, I didn’t go to the hot spring…)
Do leave a comment if you’re curious about something, I’ll try my best to answer!