About Mount Rinjani
Climbing Mount Rinjani is clearly an experience that you will talk about for a long time. But the mountain itself has a lot to tell. For example, did you know that he gave Europe and other parts of the northern hemisphere a year without a summer leading to failed harvests and floodings due to a major eruption in 1257? This eruption left his huge caldera with the 230 metres deep and sacred crater lake Segara Anak. While Mount Rinjani has a current height of 3726 metres you can imagine that it has been much higher before, estimated over 4000 metres. Nevertheless, it is still the second highest volcano in Indonesia.
From the crater lake of Mt. Rinjani rises the new volcano Mt. Baru Jari which continued to grow due to some minor eruptions in 1994 and 1995. During the last 10 years the young volcano was active several times in 2009, 2010 and latest in September 2016. About 5 minutes away from lake Segara Anak the natural hot springs named Aik Kalak are one of the highlights of Mt. Rinjani. Bathing in their up to 45°C hot water is said to have a healing effect on skin deseases as well as to slow down the aging process. One of these three hotsprings is named Pangkereman Jembangan where weapons like swords or lances are dipped in to find out if they have magical power. If not, your weapon will get sticky. But if it doesn’t change you are lucky and your weapon is strong because of its supernatural power.
Besides the hot springs there a several caves in Mt. Rinjani National Park. Especially one cave that is called Goa Susu, which means as much as milk cave, is known as a place for meditation. You can also find a hot spring which is serving as a natural sauna in there. The milky water of the hot spring and a stalactite that looks like a female breast have given the cave his name.
Mt. Rinjani is also home to a variety of plants and animals. Maybe you already heard about the geographical Wallace line which runs between Bali and Lombok and indicates the transistion area from Asian to Australian fauna. That’s why you can also see species – especially birds – of Australian origin like, if you are lucky, cockatoos and green hanging parrots in addition to Asian animals like grey macaques, the rare black ebony leaf monkey and the Javan rusa deer.
The paths up to the crater rim are lined with various plants that change with increasing altitude. Wild fig trees provide food and shelter for a lot of animals in the lower parts of the rainforest. You will pass rattan and pandanus trees until the landscape changes to a more alpine flora with mainly casuarina woodland as well as edelweiss, orchids and forget me not. Local Sasak people use many plants growing around Mount Rinjani as traditional medicine to cure a number of deseases.
Since 1997 Mt. Rinjani is protected as Gunung Rinjani National Park with an area of 41.330ha plus another 66.000ha of protected forest outside the National Park. We are happy to hear that the UNESCO also varified Mt. Rinjani as a Global Geopark in January 2018. So from this year on, you will be trekking in one of three UNESCO Global Geoparks in Indonesia and supporting sustainable tourism.