FAQ for Mount Semeru

1. When is the best trekking season for Mount Semeru?
The best trekking season is during the dry season from April to November. The mountain is usually closed to hikers during the rainy season from December to March.

2. What is the difficulty level of the trek?
Mount Semeru is considered a tough trek (more so than Mount Rinjani); trekkers are expected to trek on steep slopes and uneven terrain for a duration of 8-9 hrs daily for 3D2N. Porters will be provided throughout the climb but you are expected to carry your own personal daypack of less than 5 kilograms. Normal trekking throughout except for some scrambling towards the summit. No rock climbing or technical climbing skills are needed. Summit sunrise climb is entirely optional, climbers who would like to conserve their energy instead could choose to have a longer rest and wait for their teammates at the campsite.

3. How long is the trek and how many hours do we trek each days?
The whole trek takes 3D2N to complete. The trekking durations are: Day 01 ~ 10 hrs; Day 02 ~ 11 hrs; Day 03 ~ 4 hrs. (Timings are estimated and depends on the individual trekker’s physical stamina and conditions).

4. When is the summit day and how is it like?
The summit day is on Day 02 of the trek. You will wake up around 1 am for the summit climb. It takes about 4-5 hrs to reach the summit (for sunrise if you can reach on time) and another 3 hours to descend back to the campsite. If you do not wish to attempt the summit climb, you may stay at the campsite to wait for the summiteers to return.

5. What is the temperature like in the mountains?
The temperature in the day is around 5 – 20 degree Celsius. At night, the temperature is usually below 5 degree Celsius. At times, it can drop to below zero degree Celsius especially towards the summit.

6. What clothes should l wear for the trek?
A quick dry synthetic material shirt (can be either short or long sleeve) as the base layer, a good quality fleece jacket/woollen pull-over as the middle later and a thick wind proof jacket as the outer layer. A waterproof and windproof trekking pants is desirable and a pair of woollen gloves, beanie and scarf for additional cold protection.

7. What types of footwear are recommended for the trek?
A pair of trekking shoes (that you have worn before) with good traction. Mid or high-cut shoes are preferred over low-cut ones for better ankle grips and to prevent loose soils from getting into the shoes.

8. Do I need a trekking stick for the trek?
A hiking stick is highly recommended for the summit climb as the terrain towards the summit is very steep and consists of very fine and loose volcanic soil that may cause one to slip down easily.

9. Do I need any specialized equipment for the trek?
This is a non-technical climb; except for a set of cold wear, a good pair trekking shoes, a headlamp and trekking sticks, you do not need other specialized equipment for this trek. Upon booking confirmation, a detailed packing list will be provide to you to help you pack for your trip.

10. What is the accommodation like on the Semeru trek?
You will be camping in a tent with sleeping bag and sleeping mat provided.

11. Is high altitude sickness a problem for the climb?
Semeru is high enough for altitude sickness to be a concern. Refer to below link for more info on high altitude sickness; its symptoms, prevention and treatment: http://www.traveldoctor.co.uk/altitude.htm

12. How much drinking water will be provided during the trek?
Each person will be allocated 3 litres of drinking water (mineral water) for each day of the trek. The bulk of the water will be carried by the porters. Topping up of water into your water bottle/bag will be done at each resting point or anytime during the trek when your water supply runs low.

13. Do the guide and porters speaks English?
Our guides are conversant in English but most porters can only understand simple English.

14. Will porters will be provided for the trek?
Porters will be provided to carry communal luggage like tents, sleeping bags, food, drinks, cooking utensils etc. You may hire additional porters to carry your personal belongings at SGD 30 per day per porter. Each porter can carry up to 25kg, therefore the cost of the porters can be split among the group.

15. Where can I leave my extra luggage during the trek?
You can either hire additional porters to carry your extra luggage during the trek or leave them in the vehicle. After the trek, you can collect your luggage from the vehicle. Please do not leave any valuables in the vehicle. We would not be held responsible for any losses or theft.

16. How much tips is appropriate for the guide and porters?
Tipping is highly encouraged especially for good services as the porters are local villagers who work as porter during the hiking season to earn extra cash.  A ballpark figure would be around IDR 300K to the guide and around IDR 100K to each porter for the whole group.

17. What are the meals like during the trek?
Breakfast: Toast with jam, scramble egg, cereal, pancake etc.
Lunch: Sandwich, fried rice, noodle soup, Gado-gado etc.
Dinner: Spaghetti, rice with vegetables and some meat, fried noodles etc.
Others: Fruits, coffee and tea etc.

18. What is the health check up about?
All trekkers intending to climb Mount Semeru are required by the Semeru National Park to obtain health clearance from a local clinic in Indonesia. The heath check-up consists of some health questionnaire, weight and height measurement and blood pressure measurement. The fee for the health check-up will be included in our package price.

19. Is it safe to climb Mount Semeru?
Mount Semeru is the highest peak in Java and has been active for decades. The volcano is constantly spewing black cloud of ash and sand – sometimes once an hour, sometimes as often as 10 minutes. There have been a number of fatalities, but it is a popular and safe hike if you hike with care and treat the mountain with respect. As Java’s highest peak, it is one of the finest hikes in Indonesia.

20. Is travel insurance provided in the package?
Travel insurance is not included in the package. We strongly recommend you to procure your own travel insurance before embarking on the Mount Semeru trip. You may also procure travel insurance through us: http://iwannatravel.com.sg/aigtravelguard. For more information, please refer to the brochure (http://iwannatravel.com.sg/downloads/AIG_TravelGuard_Brochure.pdf) and policy wordings (http://iwannatravel.com.sg/downloads/AIG_TravelGuard_PolicyWording.pdf.

21. How much is the airport departure tax at Surabaya Airport?
The international departure tax at Surabaya Airport is IDR 200K per pax (as of May 2015).

22. Is it possible to arrange trip extension to other places of interest around the region after the trek?
Yes, we can help to organise and arrange to other places of interest like Mount Bromo, Mount Ijen, and Malang etc. Let us know your preferences and we would be happy to provide you with your personalised itinerary.

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