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Blue Fire Ijen Crater

Blue Fire Ijen Crater - Ijen Expedition TourBlue fire Ijen Crater is ignited sulphuric gas, which emerges from cracks at temperatures up to 600 degrees Celsius (1,112 degrees Fahrenheit). Exposed to the oxygen present in the air, the sulfur burns readily, and its flames are bright blue. Those gases are directly originated from the magmatic chamber under the volcano. The flames can be up to 5 metres high, It is the largest blue flame area in the world.

1.why Ijen Crater have Blue FireBlue Fire Ijen Crater - Ijen Expedition Tour


the lava molten rock that emerges from the Earth at ultra-high temperatures isn’t colored significantly different than the lava at other volcanoes, which all differ slightly based on their mineral composition but appear a bright red or orange color in their molten state.

But at Kawah Ijen, extremely high quantities of sulfuric gases emerge at high pressures and temperatures (sometimes more than 600°C) along with the lava. When sulfur from within the volcano breaches the surface, it can reach temperatures up to 600°C( 1, 112°F), and therefore the sulfur immediately encounters lower temperatures and pressures at the surface, which causes the sulfur to right away ignite and erupt blue flames up to five metres( 16 ft) into the air.

2. When we can see Blue fire? | Ijen Crater

This phenomenon can only be seen 1 hour after sunset and 1 hour before sunrise. In other words ” we can see blue fire all night from 6 pm until 4.30 am.

blue fire ijen crater

3.How to see blue fire

Trekking to the summit of Mount Ijen to see blue fire began at midnight (around 1:00 dawn) of Pos Paltuding (the last post for all the Ijen crater tour to make the climb) with a long climb to the crater of Mount Ijen 1.5 to 2 hours trekking and so far 3 km.

How to see blue fire

4. The best time to see Blue Fire |

During the rainy season, Mt Ijen’s blue flames are weaker, while in the dry season they are bigger. The dry season, between July and September, is the best time to climb Mt Ijen. The sandy mountain path will be dry, hence it will not be slippery and be safer for visitors.

5. Things you need to bring to see Blue Fire

  • Torches  (both hand torches or headlamps. We opted for the headlamps to maintain our palms-free), although I took both, simply in case the battery might run out withinside the night
  • Gloves (it’s miles bloodless up there, however, they even serve you nicely whilst you pass down the crater and ought to preserve directly to sharp rocks)
  • Gas masks, that you want as safety in opposition to dense clouds of poisonous gases like sulphur dioxide.  You can not live for a long term in one’s gases without a mask.  It all relies upon the wind if you’ll stumble upon a number of the ones poisonous gases on the day of your climb.
  • Warm jacket. Now, do no longer count on the provider of a “cell second-hand iciness garments store”

Ask Google French for Help

Throughout this tiring process, I remembered that Ijen Crater Banyuwangi was originally popularized by French people. Ijen Crater began to be widely known after the publication of the “À l’assaut des Volcans, Islande, Indonésie” in 1975. It was a research publication by Maurice and Katia Krafft, a French couple of volcanologists and geologists who examined Ijen Crater in 1971.

To find out who Maurice and Katia Krafft are, please read: The person who first introduced Ijen Crater Banyuwangi to the world.

Around early 1999, a TV program called Ushuaïa Nature was very popular in France and other French-speaking countries such as Switzerland, Belgium, and Quebec, Canada. The program featured the explorer Nicholas Hulot, and volcanologist Jacques-Marie Bardintzeff, they were exploring in Ijen crater, including boating in the acid lake Ijen crater.

In 2010, a traveling Reality Show called “Peking Express” which was also very popular in French-speaking countries was also filmed in Ijen Crater.

 From there I was inspired to browse the photos of Ijen Crater through Google French with the same techniques but on www.google.fr. The results turned out to be satisfactory. I found a lot of blue fire Ijen Crater photos that have been used by Indonesian travel websites, but their initial source was the French website www.oliviergrunewald.com.

This site is owned by Olivier Grunewald, a photographer specializing in wildlife photography and volcanic natural phenomenon. His photographs have been decorating quite many French and international media, such as Le Figaro Magazine, GEO, Fitur Great, VOD, BBC Wildlife, Focus, Airone, and National Geographic.

Blue Fire Ijen by Grunewald

 In 2008, Olivier Grunewald and Etienne Régis, President of SVG (Volcanology Society of Geneva) visited Ijen Crater for the first time after hearing information about the blue fire natural phenomenon in the Ijen Crater.

 Then later in 2013, Olivier Grunewald and Etienne Régis returned to Ijen Crater with a team. They stayed for 30 nights in the crater, in the middle of highly corrosive gases to record images of the unique volcanic events and the sulfur mining activities, to then be produced into documentaries.

They launched a 52-minute documentary, titled “Ijen Crater Volcano and the Mystery of the Blue Flames”. The film’s teaser premiere was released on Tuesday, January 7, 2014, on Ushuaia TV, France.

Besides that, there was no doubt about the quality of the new photoshoots. Grunewald’s photographs of the blue fire on Ijen Crater were immediately displayed in various French and worldwide media, including on National Geographic and of course on his website www.oliviergrunewald.com.

Those photographs may be the reason why the visits of foreign tourists to the Ijen Banyuwangi Crater have increased dramatically in the last few years. With the purpose, of course, to see the rare phenomenon of blue fire.

Another Blue Fire Phenomenon

Surprisingly, from Grunewald’s site, which is around fifty years old, we can find super important information about the natural phenomenon of the blue fire in other places, besides the blue fire of Mount Ijen Banyuwangi.

 It turns out that Ijen’s blue fire photographs that many people use, the same ones I downloaded from various websites are from Olivier Grunewald’s. Especially the good quality ones, you can find them in the photo album gallery menu on www.oliviergrunewald.com.

But there is something rather unique, Amongst the photos, there are three that portray a pool of blue fire and steam. These photos are very popular and are widely used in various web pages that sell tours or tell information about the blue fire of the Ijen Crater.

 These three photos are in the photo gallery on Olivier Grunewald’s website, ¡but not in the Ijen Crater Banyuwangi album, but in the Ethiopian album! The title of the photo is “Sulfuric blue flames in Dallol hydrothermal site”.

 So is there another blue fire…? Blue flame in Dallol…? the Danakil Depression in Ethiopia?

Danakil Ethiopian Depression | blue fire ijen crater

I think that as long as you are selective in choosing information sources, google has been legitimately recognized as one of the methods for finding formal references. Therefore, the first time I searched for information about Danakil was on the official website of the Ethiopian government, then I went to other sites.

First, I explored www.ethiopia.gov.et (Ethiopian Government Portal). Then, at www. Ethiopia. travel (Ethiopian Tourism Organization) and finally at www. moct.gov.et (Ministry of Culture and Tourism).

 From the official websites and several supporting sites, I got a lot of interesting information. The Danakil Depression is a desert in a volcanic area in northeast Ethiopia, reaching from the Dallol Volcano to Lake Assal, near the Ethiopian border with Eritrea. This desert area is about 100,000 kilometers. There are around 30 active and inactive volcanoes there.

 Danakil is a very extreme place. It is one of the eight lowest points on the planet that is not covered by water. Located at an altitude of 80 meters to 155 meters below sea level, yes, below sea level… Not above sea level…!

 With its dry and arid terrain, Danakil is the place with the highest average temperature on Earth, the average is 34 degrees Celsius and in the summer usually rises to 55 degrees Celsius. The highest temperature can reach 63 degrees Celsius.

 Danakil is a spectacular place. A strange and mysterious landscape with poisonous hot springs, black frozen lava flows, and large salt basins left from ancient lakes. It is one of the most active tectonic areas on the planet and with its mineral-rich crater lakes, the water and soil become very colorful.

 Salt and Mineral Mining | blue fire ijen crater

 This desert was flooded over and over again, mainly with the water of the Red Sea, when the earth’s cracking process took place. It is estimated that this area was finally separated from the Red Sea around 30,000 years ago when volcanic activity in the north created a barrier for the entry of seawater.

 After each flood episode, the seawater evaporated due to geothermal energy and solar heat. the evaporation left thick salt deposits. Besides, minerals were formed due to the mix of hot magma with the groundwater and then finally, going through crystallization (hydrothermal process)

 Salt deposits and various minerals in this desert are stratified and multi-layered. The precipitation of carbonates, sulfates, and chlorides of sodium salt, calcium, magnesium, and potassium occurs at various stages of the evaporation process. These deposits reach tens or even hundreds of meters in thickness.

 Large deposits of salt and minerals were discovered in the Dallol volcano region in 1906. This potential attracted mineral mining companies. Such as CompagniaMinerariaColoniale from Italy (1906-1929), Dallol Co. from Asmara (1951-1953), Ralph M. Parsons from America (1959-1968), and Salzdetfurth AG (SAG) from Germany (1968-1969).

 However, the most consistent miners in the Danakil desert come from the Afar tribe, local people who had lived there and have been mining the salt for more than 2000 years ago. To this day they are still mining the salt traditionally, using axes to chop up salt in the form of large sheets. then cut again into square tiles with a certain size standard. It is stacked, bound, and put on the backs of camels and donkeys.

Every day around 2000 camels and 1000 donkeys carry the salt to the nearest town, which is about 70 km from the location of the salt mine, to then be distributed further throughout Ethiopia and even abroad.

Blue Fire Dallol | blue fire ijen crater

Dallol is a volcano in the Danakil desert deep under a thick layer of salt. On the surface, it only looks like lakes and sulfur pools of colourful hot water. It has an altitude of 116 meters below sea level. The lowest point has ventilation holes and contains puddles connecting the earth’s surface and the earth’s core.

Dallol is the place with the most colourful views on earth. The active volcanic activity in the bowels of the earth encourages the movement of mineral-rich hot water vapour. Then, it crystallizes and settles on the surface creating a mineral rainbow.

 It´s a quite dangerous place to visit. The surface is covered with layers of crusty salt and minerals. But a few inches below it there is a pool of very acidic hot water and sometimes, it releases poisonous gases.

 At times the heat from the magma comes out of the crater mixed with sulfur dust. When high temperatures and sulfur dust come in contact with air, the sulfur dust burns, producing blue flames which can be seen in the dark, just like the blue flames in the Ijen Crater.

 Olivier Grunewald has documented Dallol’s blue fire phenomenon. According to him the burning of sulfur dust can last for several days. The presence of Dallol blue fire is very rare and it cannot be seen all the time.

 Olivier Grunewald’s unique blue fire Dallol photographs have spread worldwide. They have also been widely displayed in various French and international media, both online and print media.

Maybe because they both have the blue-fire theme, many online media made posts about the Ijen Crater blue fire, displaying Dallol’s blue fire photos. This happens a lot, especially on some Indonesian websites.

So, How Many Blue Fire exists in the World? | blue fire ijen crater

 Is it true that there are only blue fire Ijen Crater Banyuwangi and blue fire Dallol?

The phenomenon of blue fire often arises in volcanoes that erupt, when an ash explosion occurs. Also, ancient historical records talk about the blue fire on the southern slopes of Mount Vesuvius, Italy, the volcano that destroyed the city of Pompei, and the blue fire on Vulcano Island off the coast of Sicily.

Another record states that the phenomenon of blue fire had occurred during a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, United States. The heat from the fires melted the sulfur around hydrothermal vents, the fracture pathway that connects the surface of the earth and the earth’s core creates a blue flame.

Therefore, if someone claims that there are only two blue fire phenomena in the world, in the Ijen Crater, and Iceland, I have proven that the information is incorrect.

 The valid information is that The only blue fire phenomenon in the world that can be found every single day is the blue fire in the Ijen Crater, in Banyuwangi, Indonesia.

 The blue fire phenomenon that sometimes occurs in the Dallol, in the Ethiopian Danakil Depression, appears only on certain occasions. Another blue fire happened during a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, And the Blue fire is recorded in ancient history from Mount Vesuvius Italy, and Vulcano Island.

 This is the accurate information about the blue fire phenomenon in the world that I have gathered from various references on official and reliable sites on the internet. as a correction, as well as a critique towards the lack of attention and weak accuracy of our previous data.


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