Not having great sleep throughout the night due to coldness and excitement, but at least did rest a bit to recover the fatigue. We still manage to wake up on time at 1AM to gear up and having our toast and hot tea as breakfast. VS having slight fever but he still manage to take some Panadol and stick to the plan to depart at 1:30AM. We thought that we are very early but when we look toward the hill path, there are already lots of lighting on the hill side. We walk across a lot of camps along the way before start a tough trail going uphill. It was pure dark with only minimum vision through my head light only, the only thing I realize was it was very steep, and having thick mud like ground which was very slippery, every 2-3 steps you advance, it happen to be slip a step down. It was just like 70% of distance advance for every 100% of effort you are putting in. This phase continue like an hour for us to finally reach the slight flat trail which Gunung Baru was just to the right to us, but this was only able to be discovered when we down hill as it was total dark during that time.
It was lucky that next phase of trail is kinda flat which was still manageable while trying to accumulate more energy as we know there was a tougher path incoming later on. However I make a bad decision for not bring along proper mask with me as the hike is full of thick dust which cause my breathing become tough and tougher, other than that since we keep ascending, the higher probability that we are being impacted with altitude sickness.
Finally we almost manage to see the peak not fat away from us, but the path getting extremely tough with very thick mud and rocky trail awaiting us. Oh ya, it was terrifically steep as well.
This for sure was the toughest phase along the hike as my left legs cramp twice and fall down countless time here.
I keep on pushing myself to move my legs step by step, althought not manage to make it to the top for the sunrise but still witness its beauty tew hundreds meters away from the peak. Gunung Baru start to visible on the right side of the trail as the sun rises up. With the cramp left leg and painful right knee, it seem like the final strength that keep pushing me to the top was the mental strength, to keep pushing and telling myself not to give up.
We are finally less than a KM from the summit.
Not too bad to witness the sunrise from here as well.
Finally, by having very slow step by step effort, I make it to the summit of Mount Rinjani! The feeling was so great to finally achieve one of my bucket list. It was very crowded here at the summit and lots of local carrying national flag with them here to the top as it was Indonesia independence day that day. The view was so breathtaking as you can have almost 360 degree of different view which 3 Gili Islands to the west, and also Gunung Agong via Bali Island. We spend some time having some break and photo together with our guide before proceed to walk back toward our camp site.
Local Indonesian youth celebrating their National Day proudly here on the summit of Mount Rinjani.
Sea of clouds surrounding the peak.
Classic view from the summit, not just the Segara Anak lake and Gunung Baru, but also 3 Gili Islands as well as Gunung Agong via Bali Island.
The queue to take the photo with the classic view.
And finally I have mine! Photo credit to Kim Kang.
The crowd wandering around the summit.
The view on the trail toward the summit.
Edge of the summit.
Everyone finding some good spot for some rest while enjoying the surrounding view.
Thanks to Faisal and team for guiding us all the way to the summit.
Not to forget our guide, Maman and Rendy as well!
As I am totally exhausted, and due to the steep thick dust and rocky path downhill opportunity, basically I am doing some ski action during this phase of down hill, as the dust was almost a feet thick. Of course, the result is you are getting a very dirty hiking shoes in return but that didn't matter at all. Downhill of this trail only take me around 15 minutes, can't imagine that I spend nearly 2-3 hours on this hike alone in the morning, that was just how tough this trail was. With injured legs and tough breathing condition, as well as countless fall down during trekking down, did not stop me from enjoying surrounding view, Segara Anak lake to the left, and toward the lower ground to the east of the island.
Look back on the scary trail.
Another view back toward the summit.
Closer view on the Segara Anak Lake and Gunung Baru.
Me after countless of falls on the down hill.
VS enjoying himself on the edge.
A look over our camp site down there.
One of the trail with thick mud.
The mud was thick, and the air was so polluted.
Make sure you have a good mask to protect help you with breathing along this trail.
We finally make it back to the camp site but due to fatigue condition that all of us are suffering, we decided to change our plan to take the same route back to Sembalun and proceed our camping night via Sending Gila waterfall area. I skip the camp plan as I am truly in bad condition and I need a good place to rest and clean my stuff, hence when in Senaru, I drop by a Sinar Rinjani Home Stay while the rest of the team head on to the camp site, I will meet up with the team next morning. Just half way doing my cleaning, I direct fainted and fall asleep as it is truly very tired day.
Having our lunch on the way back to Sembalun.
Finally, we are closer to Sembalun. Is time for a good night rest!
The summit of Mount Rinjani - Indonesia