Climbing Mt. Sumbing (3,371 masl)

There is always a first time for everything – either by a chance or you make it happen. 

I always wanted to climb a mountain and finally made it on 30-31 January 2015. Such a new achievement in a new year, without really planning it. Said yes to the challenge on Monday, underwent heavy training from Monday to Tuesday, could barely walk on Wednesday because of the muscle sore and headed to Wonosobo on Thursday with a hope that I would be able to hike on Friday.

I took a night bus from Terminal Pulo Gadung at 8PM and reached Purwokerto at 4PM whereof I took another bus to Wonosobo. A very nice weather welcomed me, convincing that it’s gonna be an epic experience.

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After registering and paying the retribution at the base camp in Garung Village, I took an ojek (motorcycle taxi) to save me from walking 3km to Pos I (Malim) where the adventure begun. I started to climb at around 11AM and I could never forget how difficult it was at first for me. With the big backpack – although it was not that heavy, I tried to climb slowly and adapt with the new surrounding.

The trail became tougher as I passed the Pos II (Genus) and more rocky after Pos III (Sedelupak Roto). It was actually a climbing exercise where I use both my hands a lot to go up. When reaching Watu Kotak, together with other hikers we set our tents up and decided to stay overnight since the wind was so blusterous and the darkness approached.

The next morning, we broke through the dawn to catch the sunrise in the summit, each armed by a headlamp. I had to be careful as the steep incline was so slippery because of the rain at the night before. The rocks were so unsteady and I was grateful there was nobody behind me as they kept falling down.

Before reaching the peak, there was a confusing sign showing the direction to the peak both to right and to left. I took the right one which led me to Puncak Buntu where I could see the crater. 

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I did not hike until the real peak as it was really difficult – even a friend who has a lot of climbing experience said the same. The sun started to rise and made me forget all of those efforts to get up to the top.

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I could see Mt. Sindoro which is across Mt. Sumbing, as well as Mt. Merapi and Mt. Merbabu from afar. It was really beautiful up there – until now I am still amazed every time I recall the moment.

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At the end of the journey, I went down playing with the dirt and sliding a lot as it was raining cats and dogs. The way back was literally so slippery and it felt like I was walking in the ditch since the water was streaming on the trail.

Tips:

  • When climbing during the rainy season, wearing waterproof hiking shoes will help you a lot! I wore a pair of trail running shoes. They were comfy but I did not like it when my feet were all soggy. Furthermore, bring a rain coat or any water resistant clothes, decent backpack cover and extra long-sleeves clothes. AND don’t forget to wrap all your belonging in waterproof/plastic small bags before packing them in your backpack.
  • Bring enough water – there is no water resource if you take the old trail – jalur lama.
  • Check the bus schedule for going back to your hometown. I ended up wasting another day before going back to Jakarta because I did not know this. As an alternative (and if you can afford more on transportation and want to be more efficient in terms of time), you can go by train to Semarang or Purwokerto and then take bus from there to Wonosobo!
  • Last but not least, keep encouraging yourself! All the struggles you’ll go through will be paid off by the astonishing view from atop.

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