// Kerinci


Facts

Elevation: 3,805 m (12,484 ft) Prominence: 3,805 m
Ribu category: Google MarkerSangat Tinggi Province: Jambi
Google Earth: kml Other names:
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Eruptions: 1838, 1842, 1878, 1908-09, 1921, 1923, 1936-38, 1952, 1960, 1963-64, 1966-70, 1990, 1996, 1998-99, 2001-02, 2004, 2007-09, 2013

Photos

KerinciNext »
Kerinci seen from the Gn Tujuh trailhead (Dan Quinn, May 2013)Kerinci seen from the Gn Tujuh trailhead (Dan Quinn, May 2013)
Kerinci seen from the Gn Tujuh trailhead (Dan Quinn, May 2013)
Gunung Kerinci from Kersik Tua (Andy Dean, April 2011)Gunung Kerinci from Kersik Tua (Andy Dean, April 2011)
Gunung Kerinci from Kersik Tua (Andy Dean, April 2011)
Gunung Tujuh from the slopes of Kerinci (Andy Dean, April 2011)Gunung Tujuh from the slopes of Kerinci (Andy Dean, April 2011)
Gunung Tujuh from the slopes of Kerinci (Andy Dean, April 2011)
Gunung Tujuh crater lake (Andy Dean, April 2011)Gunung Tujuh crater lake (Andy Dean, April 2011)
Gunung Tujuh crater lake (Andy Dean, April 2011)

View a slideshow in our Picasaweb gallery

Bagging It!

Mount Kerinci is the highest volcano in Indonesia and the highest Indonesian peak outside Papua (Irian Jaya). Much of the Kerinci Seblat National Park is located in the province of Jambi but the mountain itself is on the border with West Sumatra. We are listing it as being in Jambi because local people regard Kerinci as a region of Jambi and because it must be climbed from the Jambi side. Considering its height, Kerinci is not as difficult a climb as you might think and the views from the top are amazing. The closest airport is Padang from where it is a 6-8 hour road journey to the nearest accommodation to the Kerinci trail, at Kersik Tua (also spelt Tuo, 1,519m). Transport can be arranged at Padang airport or by contacting one of the homestays in advance. However, given the length of the journey it doesn’t come cheap so it isn’t recommended unless you have a group of 4 hikers minimum.

Although it is possible to get to the top and back in a very, very long day (minimum 12 hours hiking there and back), it is recommended that you spend a night on the mountain at Shelter 2 (3,040m) or even the more exposed Shelter 3 (3,306m). The summit is usually cloudy after mid-morning so if you want to admire the views it is best to plan on reaching the top for dawn the second day before making the descent back to Kersik Tua. The water sources are not reliable so make sure you take ample supplies.

You need to obtain a National Park permit, available from one of the homestays in Kersik Tua, which currently costs a reasonable Rp 20,000. It is also a good idea to take a photocopy of your passport with you. The best known homestay in the area is the one owned by Pak Subandi, one of many ethnically Javanese who live in the area. He is an expert on flora and fauna and many people stay here to explore the amazing animal and plant life including incredibly rare birds, pitcher plants, Armorphophallus titanium (the tallest flower in the world) and perhaps even elephants and tigers or even the mysterious Orang Pendek, a bipedal ape of Yeti-like reputation. There are plenty of guides available and Pak Subandi will provide you with some excellent meals of local produce both on and off the mountain. Make sure you discuss the cost in advance to avoid being surprised when the bill arrives.

The trail itself starts about 5km west of Kersik Tua, through the tea plantations past the very visible statue of a tiger. At the end of the road at 1,755m there is a dilapidated signpost beside fields of chillis and potatoes. The trail leads past a ranger post and up into the forest. After 30 minutes, Pos 1 (1,880m) is reached and after another 30 minutes you should have reached a rusty old sign (1,988m). There is a shelter at 2,207m and another rusty sign next to a large tree at 2,450m. Sections of the trail are steep muddy gullies which can be problematic when it rains but generally there are no technical difficulties.

At 3,040m there is a small path leading down to Shelter 2 on the left. This is the best camping area on the trail as it offers some protection from the wind and there is often a source of water down in the gully beside the camping area. There are metal frames here so extra tarpaulin would be excellent to keep you extra protected from getting soaked in the usual afternoon rains. It takes 3 hours to the summit from here which means a starting time of 3am if you want to see the sunrise from the top. Alternatively you can camp higher up beyond the treeline at Shelter 3 (3,306m) which will save you an hour in the morning. It is much more exposed but you will have great views of neighbouring Gunung Tujuh and the Gunung Tujuh Lake from your tent.

From the edge of the treeline, the trail is steep and there is plenty of shallow scree to negotiate. It is a good idea to wear gloves and make sure you have a torch you can attach to your head so you have both hands free. The tiny summit area appears quite suddenly and is marked with a cairn and orange flag which lies between two rocky outcrops. Down below steeply to the right is the smouldering crater and to the left is the Indian Ocean. Views are extensive – you should be able to see Gunung Tujuh on your right, Gunung Raya and Gunung Masurai to the south, and Gunung Talang, Gunung Marapi and Gunung Singgalang to the north.

After celebrating havng reached the top of Indonesia’s highest volcano, it is a long walk back down to Kersik Tua and Pak Subandi’s delicious potatoes.

Bagging information by Daniel Quinn

Practicalities

Getting there There are regular flights to Padang’s International airport from Indonesia and neighbouring countries. It is then a long 6-8 hours drive to the starting point. There is public transport and ‘travel cars’ for which you share a car with others but it will take you most of a day.
Accommodation There are several homestays in Kersik Tua and nearby villages.
Permits Available from the homestays in Kersik Tua for Rp20,000 per person (2013) – take a photocopy of your passport photo page.
Water sources Sometimes available at Shelter 2 (3,040m).
Find a local guide:
Local Average Monthly Rainfall (mm): padang

Location

Origins and Meaning

The name Kerinci is derived from the word “Kurinci” in Tamil language. A long time ago, the Tamil land was divided into four districts and each one was named after a local flower to characterize the district. The specific flower related to the highlands is the Kurinci flower (Strobilanthes). Therefore, Kurinci also means “highland”. It is the name of the region, the people (tribe), the volcano, and a lake in the region. Over time, the spelling of Kurinci has shifted. Kurinci was changed into Kerinci for formal Bahasa Indonesia. Related words and spellings include Kincai, Kincei, and Kinci. (Dewi Fovilia, 2011)

Links and References

Wikipedia English
Wikipedia Indonesia

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Trip Reports and Comments

10 entries for “Kerinci”

  1. avatar

    Spent a windy 2 days/1 night on Kerinci. Well worth the effort!

    Angkots can be found from the traditional market down valley in Sungai Penuh (roughly Rp. 20.000 for the 1.5 hour ride to Kersik Tua). You can be dropped off right on Pak Subandri’s doorstep. Pak Subandri is still the undisputed face of Gunung Kerinci and is a marvelous gentleman. Rooms run roughly Rp. 150.000/night.

    From Pak Subandri’s front door he can arrange one of his sons to drove you the 5km to the trailhead. Alternatively it’s a pleasant hike on foot through the tea plantation (and gives you more satisfaction afterwards).

    We managed to make the summit in 6 hours with 4 to descend. The trail is as described. Water can be found as Pos 3 but we took 4.5 L/person which was just enough. Worth noting that we experienced winds in excess of 80 km/hour at night (camped at the exposed Pos 3) and into our hike to the summit – enough to blow a quality tent out of its stakes and bend the tent poles. The climb to the summit required dropping to all fours from time to time. Nothing undoable, just be prepared. From Pos 3 to the summit, poles mark the best trail up. It’s advised to follow them.

    Excellent view over South Sumatra then back to Pak Subandri’s.

    Posted by Mas Frank | June 30, 2016, 21:30
  2. avatar

    Great place to hike. Not an easy terrain, especially the toughest part from Shelter 2 to Shelter 3, where use of hands (glove would be very useful) is absolutely necessary. This section is where you will monkey up or down, which makes it quite special (but highly dangerous in the rain).

    Beautiful changing landscape at sunrise at the summit, but view was quickly obstructed by sulphuric smoke blowing in our direction. Wind was awfully strong starting from camp at Shelter 3 all the way to the summit. Always be prepared to be covered with more layers to avoid discomfort.

    Based on my experience, it seems that the hike from shelter 3 to the summit of Kerinci is a little less difficult compared with the the night trek from the camp to the summit at Rinjani, Lombok. This is probably due to larger section of scree to negotiate at Rinjani.

    We are a group of 8 (5 of whom were totally inexperienced) and we used Pak Subandi to organise the porter, camp, food, etc. Overnight at Subandi’s Homestay is nice as the food is great. Not to mention the unmatched hospitality of the highly experienced naturalist. Highly recommended to bag this mountain. The landscape is extraordinary right from the village of Kersik Tuo all the way to the top.

    Some pictures here:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/vinchel/albums/72157664395103530

    Posted by Vinchel | March 1, 2016, 12:06
  3. avatar

    Hiked Kerinci on 2016-01-05 with Pak Rapani +62 812-7111-7133. paid Safa Marwa 175,000 IDR /person for transportation to kersik tuo from padang airport. We paid Pak Rapani 1 million IDR/per person for the full package minus porters: 1 night at rapani’s homestay, transportation to the mountain base, hiking up with guide, all food (dinner + bfast + lunch + dinner + bfast + lunch + dinner) and tent, sleeping bag. We carried our own stuff up.

    The path up to base camp (shelter 3, at the top of the vegetation line) is extremely clear. My impression is that groups of indonesian students do it all the time without guides. I’ve posted GPS coordinates here: https://www.strava.com/activities/466979589

    From shelter 3 to the summit is a little bit more difficult. As long as there is good visibility its easy to find your way around, but I can see how people could die if fog rolls in and you walk off the route into a ravine.

    The hike is moderately difficult. No need for technical climbing equipment, but the trail is quite steep at points. One person in our group did not feel comfortable and stayed at shelter 3, the remaining 6 of us had no problem going up to the summit

    All in all, a good experience.

    Posted by nelson | January 22, 2016, 10:52
  4. avatar

    Hi, just wondering. Is this volcano a tougher climb than Rinjani? What is your experience? Anyone? Thank You very much

    Posted by Vinchel | January 11, 2016, 19:54
  5. avatar

    Hi!

    Just a quick question – do you recommend a guide and porters for this trip? Is the trail obvious or is a guide highly recommended?

    Posted by Tim | August 4, 2015, 11:58
  6. avatar

    Fantastic website and info source for Indonesian mountains!

    As a solo-traveller it’s not necessary to go with old/unsafe public buses to Kerinci, to keep a low budget. It’s very easy to get one of the hotels/homestays in Padang to book a seat in a travel-taxi (new and modern Toyota Avanza or similar vehicle which takes up to 7 passengers) to Kersik Tua. They will pick you up at the hotel in the morning at no additional cost. The journey to Kersik Tua in travel-taxi takes only 6 hours, is safe and comfortable, and the price I paid was 140.000 rupies. This price was at the end of Ramadan, so maybe it’s cheaper other times of year.

    I recommend Pak Subandi’s homestay in Kersik Tua. The food and services there are great! He will also assist you in flagging down a travel-taxi back to Padang. I paid same price back to Padang (140.000 rupies), even I was the only passenger in the car. The driver took me straight to my hotel in Padang at no additional cost. So easy and comfortable :-)

    Posted by Lyngve Skrede | August 5, 2013, 19:45
  7. avatar

    Some serious eruptions happening at Kerinci this past couple of days. Seemingly rather unexpected. A handful of hikers apparently still unaccounted for. Let’s hope they make it back ok.
    http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/06/02/mt-kerinci-erupts.html

    Posted by Dan | June 3, 2013, 23:10
  8. avatar

    stunning views at the top.its a tough climb but worth it. the owner of subandi homestay is very friendly and speaks good english and will organise a guide for you as well as supplies.peering into the crater at the top is not for the faint hearted and if it rains which it did with me you might get a few leeches on you.the day i was at the top you could see the ocean and many more mountains around .you could even see marapi up in bukitinngi.also very scenic tea plantations around the base. i rate this 10 out of 10

    Posted by chris whiting | December 9, 2009, 04:46

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