It's been only a week and a half since I got back from Indonesia but already I'm looking forward to heading back next year.
Normally my multiday events are races but when Indo Trek was organised by Phil & Co at Sole Challenge I couldn't resist the chance to visit another island in Indonesia, Indo Ultra was held in Lombok whereas the trek was to be in Java,more specifically in the spectacular surroundings of Ujung Kulon National Park...an area where the endangered Rhinos are. Sightings of these Rhinos are rare and we weren't lucky enough to see them but there is always next year!
Myself and Debs arrived at the Jakarta hotel the morning of the 30th Sept so had a full day and nights use of the hotels resources. i couldn't resist the use of the pool and gym. A bit of luxury at the start www.fm7hotel.com It is also the hotel at the finish
There was a long drive the following day to the base camp at Tamanjaya where the trek would start from. There we met some more of the crew and I saw some familiar faces from Indo Ultra...Steveo and Hendra. We were given a welcome and a presentation from one of the Ujung Kulon National Park Rangers. He was obviously very passionate about his work, to be fair i think if i worked there i would be too.
It's difficult to explain exactly what each day was like, I think it just has to be experienced. As each day finished I decided that that was my favourite day...i don't think there was one day I didn't love.
We had beach, trail, coral, jungle routes with jungle plants and animals to look out for. Quite a few big spiders and lots of birds, monkeys and fruit bats to be seen but no Rhinos came along.
There were a number of jungle days...a couple of the routes had not been used very often so it ended up as a jungle obstacle course which was a lot of fun. At the end of that day we came out onto the most beautiful stretch of beach I have ever seen. I spent that night in a hammock falling asleep to the sounds of crashing waves. Outstanding! The following day we had a short trek then spent the most of the late morning/afternoon on a boat heading back to base camp...the water was so inviting but couldn't go for a swim here unfortunately.
We returned to Tamanjaya base camp where the following day we did some community work. The group planted some trees which we named and will be used in the future years for a variety of purposes. We also made bins for local schools and shops which we presented to them. Taking the one we made to the school was great. The children pretty much mob you and are very sweet. It was difficult to actually tear yourself away from them!
When we finished our community day we were treated to the most amazing show of sing/dancing/entertainment from the village, the whole village turned out and it was such a great night. A few of us got dragged up to dance too, though Denis decided to entertain everyone with his "interesting dancing style"
The last trek day we visited a bat cave...some of the crew like Eja and Bram went down and took photos. This was also the day we got to swim in the jungle pool and do some tarzan swinging from vines and jumping into the water....that was awesome!
Another long journey back to the hotel before a very early flight back to uk and to reality.
The other trekkers were all a lot of fun too, I had known Debs, Michelle and Denis beforehand but it was great to spend time with them on the trip as well as meeting Jean, Lenel, Karen, Jeni and the crazy Viki!
Thanks to all the crew. The porters did an incredible job, quite how they carry what they do (barefoot) is unbelievable.
Great crew overall...Phil, Steveo, Hendra, Eja, park rangers, porters and the cooks (food was sooo good) So well done to everyone involved in making it a great success...I'm looking forward to being part of it all again next year
Roll on next september!
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