10 May 2021 432x Articles
IJEN CRATER/KAWAH IJEN BY NIGHT
Ijen Crater /Kawah located near the eastern tip of Java island is a relatively ordinary volcano by day. OK so it’s kind of terrifying, as most volcanoes are, but there’s nothing about it that outwardly separates it from any of the other hundreds of volcanoes in this island country.
To learn why you’ll need to head to the base of the volcano just after midnight, and hike up and into the volcano’s crater. It’s no easy task—you’ll trek more than four miles and ascend to heights of nearly 10,000.
Inside Kawah Ijen Volcano
You’ll also need a gas mask: When you begin your descent into the crater, toxic sulfur fumes blow over you, marring not only your ability to breathe but also your visibility. (It’s for this reason that you should also probably bring a local guide with you—but more on that in a minute).
Around the time the clock strikes three or four, you’ll have arrived at the bottom of the crater, and laid your eyes upon one of the most alien sights on our planet: Blue fire spewing out of the ground!
The vibrant blue hue of these flames, which results from heavy sulfur deposits in the volcano, is best seen during the darkest part of the night, hence your needing to wake up long before the crack of dawn.
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.
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.
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