Mighty Mt Bromo

In Eastern Java, on a mere seventeen-hour drive from Yogjakarta, set against a mountainous backdrop, lies this otherworldly and still active volcano.

After a scarring bus drive with the world worst driver –tired, angry and visually compromised – we arrived, somehow safely at the foot of Mt Bromo. By this time, we were already four-hours later than planned and as we were due to depart again at three o’clock in the morning, we only had two and a half hours of sleep to look forward to.

The next morning (read, two hours later), we were woken by our driver who seemed even unhappier after getting up at stupid o’clock. We shovelled in our breakfast of two bananas each and were off to see the sunrise over the mountain. We drove to the foot of the mount from which we hiked up. On the top it was freezing, -5 and even though we had dressed in pretty much every piece of clothing we were carrying with us, the cold still got through.

We waited with baited breath as the sky coloured all shades of red, orange, purple. As it got lighter we got a better glance at our surroundings and what beauty lied beneath us! A moon-like landscape met a lush green border at the horizon, a thick fog lingered on the ground, giving the scenery an eerie look and a majestic looking Mt Bromo in the background. As the sun rose, temperatures grew hotter as we made our way to venture up the mountain.

We walked through the moon-like landscape we had looked down on mere moments ago, past men riding horses and were met by gusts of wind carrying volcano ash. Really rather unprepared and even somewhat naïve, we had not prepared facemasks to protect us from the fumes, ash and gasses coming out the volcano. This was much more of a nuisance than expected and so we stumbled up the mountain hindered by the aforementioned.

When we reached the top, we walked over the crater of the volcano, staring deep into its mouth. Enormous toxic fumes rose from the peak and looked impressive against the mountainous backdrop. As the sun rose we felt how tired we were and made our way down the mountain, only to set off on another eleven-hour drive to Ijen Crater (HERE) which of course, took much longer than planned.

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