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Indonesia is always one of my favourite country which offered spectacular views with affordable budget for backpacker. Choosing a safe and budget hiking company is my biggest concern while planning my hiking trip. There are plenty of trekking company in Lombok with price range from luxury to budget . Note that those expensive tour company (500 ~ 800 USD  for 4 days packages ) out there doesn’t assure hiker to get an exclusively services like a 5 stars hotel accommodation and people carry mineral water up  the hill for you to “bath” . After all it’s a hiking journey. Everything back to basic that small little things would be luxurious for you. Anything unexpected always mean more right?

Coca ColaThe touched moment when our fellow porters offered us Coca-Cala during our last day lunch !

How budget can Mt Rinjani hiking be ??

It can be cheap and nice !!  I chose Ahmed’s Expedition  trekking eco tour after reading some positive reviews and not to mentioned the fast responses from Ahmed who really gave me and the group plenty of information and hassle free  transportation arrangement for the whole 9 days journey in Lombok .Ahmed offered really best price for 9 of us  that quoted in IDR instead of USD ( remember to ask for it Email : trekrinjanilombok@gmail.com ) . We changed our plan last minute to 4 days 3 nights instead the initial plan 3 days 2 nights .Trust me this is best decision to enjoy the trek ! Go for 4 days a least

Cost for 4 days 3 nights – 2100 K IDR/pax  (RM600 ,220 USD, conversion RM1 = 3500 IDR )  for 4 days 3 nights package.It’s super good value given by Ahmed team which provided good service and experiences 

Include

Pick up service on arrival from Lombok area transfer from airport, mataram, –> bangsal harbor, Gili Trawangan –> Sembalun–> Senaru–>, Senggigi ).

– Entrance fee to Rinjani National Park IDR 150,000 / person / day

– 2 Trekking guide Specialist Mountain Guide- 9 Porters from local people to carry logistic and trek equipment (Not include to carry your personal belongings)

– Full board meals; breakfast, lunch, dinner, coffee or tea, hot chocolate, snacks, fresh fruits- Camping equipment; tent, mattress, sleeping bags, cooking gears, toilet tent, sleeping pillows, first aid kit.- Drinking water, (1 person get 2 bottle 1,5 liters a day) and

-1 night hotel before trekking & etc

Not to forget that the porters and guide did super good which tipping as appreciation wasn’t a must but each of us willingly contributed at least 150k for their good job.IMG_2531-2The hikers and team

How hard to hike Mt Rinjani ??

There were so many different feedback I read or heard from hikers who did Mount Rinjani before I actual experienced the journey myself . As a moderate fitness level hiker , I do doubted my capability as most people rated it as ” hard ” especially the peak conquering path . At least moderate fitness level is needed for sure .

Intense training do help for sure by looking at my teammate progress after went through plenty of pre-hike. Basically most of my teammate and I did 2  main hike training 3 months before the real challenge. I choose Mount Optir (Gunung Ledang Johore )as my first 1st start hike training which required day hike of 7~9 hours depends on physical fitness. Second, I did Mossy forest in Cameron highland which took an hour for 1km distance moved due to it’s muddy and wet condition . Of course some of the teammate trained or hiked even more (4~7 mount) as preparation before Rinjani .

Proud to say that all of teammate made it to the peak !! Some of the teammate didn’t go through much intense training but still able to make it to the peak !? I would say it’s rather individual stamina, durability towards the environment and DETERMINATION is the key of all .The real challenge part was the peak conquering route and path. Woke up 2am in a very windy and cold environment. The path is slippery with volcano ashes .What ever effort you make maybe waste if you keep on struggling to be fast. Take your time keep calm and hike .

” Small pace and keep going .Don’t attempt to put more force while the rocky ashes cause you to slide backwards”.

What you need to do is motivate yourself ! You will reach your destination eventually with plenty of rewards . Trust me , those  were mesmerizing moments .

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The teammate CK who made it with the strong determination toward the peak even it’s kind of late , big applause  *DSCF3918How can I resist this scenery !

What do I need for overnight hike ?

The simplest is the wiser options. Daypack 25L to 30L backpack with mesh support ideal to carry throughout the journey. One of the biggest challenge for me was to carry my own belonging hike from one check point to another . I brought too much unnecessary items and cloths .  Climax different from super hot 34 degree to 5 degree  celcius in the night time gave extra load.  Preparation items as below is sufficient  for 4 days hike. (I brought more than that)

Top – 1 Thermal sport wear , 2 short sleeve dry fit sport wear/T-shrt , 1 long sleeve dry fit for sleeping to keep warm, Light waterproof hiking jacket.

Bottom – 1 shorts, 1 thermal legging / yoga pant & track suit  ,extra 3 socks

Other – Glove <To keep warm> , slipper , soap , swimsuit < There is hot spring and lake there >, small towel , hat <It’s hot at the foothill > , Sunscreen ,head lamp , hiking stick < This is crucial that help you to ease your energy to reach the peak, could be rented there > & sun protection UV resistant long glove, mask < for dust and ashes>

Food – some sweet and energy bar . Probably some jerky like ” bak kua ” are good to have for the late evening bonding session after a day hike . 

Proper hiking shoes is also essential to protect and secure your foot to have pleasant journey . If those load are still too burden the porters and guides are still kind enough to carry few item for you with FOC . Don’t stingy with the tips , they will happily do it for you.

When is the best month or season to hike?

It can be varies ! Generally it’s good season to hike from May until September which is dry with clear sky . Somehow it’s still unpredictable with some drizzling during the beginning of May . I would think mid May is ideally as it will be cleaner with less trash . Truly hope the trash issue could be controlled !    

What about food and water ?

That was one of our biggest concern before we go. We bought plenty of instant rice or even biscuit etc worry that the food might not enough to serve our appetite . Well , that’s definitely an over reaction for getting those . The porters brought sufficient water and food to cook that serve us good and full enough .Tea and coffee for each meal. Fruits for lunch and dinner. Most of the time, I can’t even finish those food . Always communicate and stated your concerns / requirement with your guides before the hike.

 DSCF3834DSCF3832The first lunch served for us . It tasted just amazingly delicious !

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Any altitude sickness sign ?rinjani.trekking-map-500x252

None of us encounter this problem . Basically it’s an progressive hike. It has geographically elevation around 3,726 m / 12,224 ft which take into count the peak. Altitude change doesn’t seem to be a concern. However you may just spare it. Prescribe medication such as Acetazolamide before the hike start.

Which route and what package shall I choose

I choose my starting point via Sembalun and hiked up the peak on the 2nd day . This route offered amazing grassland view for the 1st day ! Some hikers will choose route via Senaru for the 1st day hike which hike through forest -> crater then go for peak hike on the 3rd day. Advantages for the 1st option will be more energy remain as hiker physical level still on 80%~90% fit ready for the peak hike compare to 3rd day .

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Most European or budget concern hiker will go for 3 days 2 nights which is kind of tough . Everything has to be completed on time  in order to complete the whole journey for Sembalun or Senaru. Looking at this view , what are you rushing for ??

DSCF3930DSCF3962The crater lake – Anak Segera lake . I wish I have more time here

What’s key of success hike ? 

It’s all about determination and will !A good fitness level of course help to enjoy the whole journey even more without feeling too exhausted and unbearable by the body .Well , nothing is impossible Everyone can do it . Healthy always come first . Ensure your health is on tip top for outdoor activities in order to enjoy the beauty of nature .  
 

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