About Mount Ijen Sulphur Miners in Banyuwangi

Mount Ijen Sulphur Crater

Location: Mount Ijen , Banyuwangi

This surreal place it takes at least 2 hours of steep ascent to the top of the crater, gives a spectacular view of the torquiose colored lake down below the crater.

This is where the local men work as back-breaking sulphur miners. They suffer toxic stinging sulphur fumes and endure the steep trek up the crater and dangerous descent down to the lake.

The sulphur is use for whitening sugar and processing rubber. The miners apparently earn around 5,000rp per load according to my travel partner who interpreted it, although there was some dispute about it later on.

It was a little challenging to walk up the volcano, takes a little persistent steady pace to reach there in 2 hours. Am not really that fit a person, a much fitter person could do it in 1.30 hours. It took me 1.30 hours down the volcano. It would take another 1-2 hour for me just to walk down to the base of the crater. Regretted not going there early before sunrise so I could have more time to walk down the crater where the miners break up sulphur pieces. It was quite a difficult descent down the crater, only managed a little bit down before surrendering to the stinging fumes of sulphur dioxide.

There’s a national geographic documentary on the Sulphur Miners of Ijen which gives you more details.

Part one :

http://youtube.com/watch?v=U2NYNdoMtEk

Part two :

http://www.youtube.com/v/V9GJdfBVjK

JourneyMan pictures gives another view

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciH1qw3eiHs&feature=related

Bookmark http://ihavetravellust.wordpress.com/2008/07/03/sulphur-crater-of-mount-ijen-east-java/

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