Journal: Nina hikes Mt. Ijen of East Java, Indonesia
October 28-29 2022
Ijen Plateau, known as “Kawah Ijen“, is a volcano complex located in East Java and is known to be an unmissable sight in Indonesia. This escapade is even more worthy due to its infamous “Blue Flame”.
I must admit, this trip was a spontaneous one, however, Mt. Ijen has always been on my bucket list of mountains to explore.
The hike up was generally tough, but rather short (it took us no more than 2 hrs to reach the top). The most grueling part of this hike and the reason for our mixed feelings about the experience was the long descent and ascent to the base of the crater.
We shared the narrow steep muddy path up to the plateau of Ijen crater with at least close to 100 others. Right after, we were greeted by the steep and rock-strewn trail down to the crater. There was no time for photos, no time for distractions. Each step was carefully calculated to avoid tripping over another person or sliding down on loose rocks. The pitched-black setting made this sunrise hike even more challenging.
As we descended down the crater we were greeted by miners, we saw many miners carrying heavy loads all the way up to the crater. The blue fire derives from the mining activity and is ignited sulfuric gas, which emerges from cracks. As the sun rose above us, the sky transformed from into a kaleidoscope of hues of Blue. It was definitely worth the test of strength and energy. The view was breathtaking leaving us speechless.
I must say, despite being a very tourist-packed attraction, it was undoubtedly an exceptional thrill for adventure-seekers.