// Slamet

Facts

Elevation: 3,428 m (11,247 ft) Prominence: 3,284 m
Ribu category: Google MarkerSangat Tinggi Province: Jawa Tengah (Central Java)
Google Earth: kml Other names:
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Eruptions: 1772, 1825, 1835, 1847, 1849, 1860, 1875, 1885, 1890, 1904, 1923, 1926-30, 1932-33, 1937, 1939-40, 1944, 1948, 1951, 1953, 1955, 1957-58, 1960-61, 1966-67, 1969, 1973-74, 1988, 1999-2000, 2009, 2014

Photos

SlametNext »
Slamet as seen from Bambangan (Andy Dean, May 2011)Slamet as seen from Bambangan (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Slamet as seen from Bambangan (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Camping on Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)Camping on Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Camping on Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Climbing Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)Climbing Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Climbing Gunung Slamet (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Slamet crater (Andy Dean, May 2011)Slamet crater (Andy Dean, May 2011)
Slamet crater (Andy Dean, May 2011)

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Bagging It!

Gunung Slamet is the highest peak in Central Java and second highest in Java island. Upon seeing Slamet during his first exploration of the world, Sir Francis Drake immediately directed his boat to dock in Cilacap on Java’s south coast. It is an immense mountain and the vast lava field summit is one of the most isolated places you can be in Java. It is also one of the best places to see both the north and south coasts. Slamet is one of Java’s more active volcanoes and there is almost always lots of gas around at the crater. It can also get very windy on the slopes so choose your camping spot wisely and whatever you do, do not even think about camping at the summit area because of the dangerously large amount of gases.

There are several hiking routes and they are all long and it is hard to estimate exactly how long each one takes as it will vary greatly from person to person. Suffice to say that you will need at least one night on the mountain unless you climb at night which is not recommended. The most enjoyable thing to do is to ascend one way and descend another way. However, please bear in mind that guides from one side of the mountain will be much less familiar with other routes. A popular route from the south leads up from the mountain resort of Baturaden near Purwokerto but has been closed in the past due to too many hikers becoming lost. It is currently (April 2010) open and is the easiest place to arrange public transport to and from due to its close proximity to the small city of Purwokerto.

There is also an increasingly popular route from the north-west at the popular weekend retreat of Guci where there is decent accommodation and hot springs. This trail starts at 1,200m and is very accessible from Tegal and the north coast. There are plenty of buses running between Guci and Tegal but remember to agree on a fare before you board or else you may well be expected to pay substantially more than the going rate – especially if you are white. A taxi from Tegal railway station should take just over one hour. From the bend in the road just above Guci market, the trail leads up through woodland and dense foliage. It is well-marked with Pos markers nailed to trees and also red and orange ribbons tied to small branches on the higher slopes. However, initially the narrow trail has a broken asphalt surface. At approximately 1,399m the trail branches – take the left. The trail branches yet again at 1,540m. Once again, take a left to find Pos 1 (1,550m). The trails leads up to Pos 2 (1,937m), Pos 3 (2,125m) and Pos 4 (2,577m). There are small flat areas suitable for camping at most of the Pos. Near Pos 4 there is a good camping area on the left beyond which is a small trail leading down to a nearby water source – don’t rely on finding water here though. The first building of any description is a small shelter at 2,675m. Not long after this you will reach the treeline and start ascending very steeply up bare rock, slippery scree and old lava flows to the crater area. Once at the top, you still have to negotiate the complex crater areas to find the summit ridge itself which lies 1km further east. In bad weather this can be very difficult indeed, especially as there are often sulphur clouds at this side of the peak. That is why experienced guides are absolutely essential for this mountain.

Probably the best route for the summit of Slamet starts from the east of the mountain at Bambangan (at roughly 1,500m). It can be reached by public transport from Purwokerto in 90 minutes. At the end of the road, there is a small registration building on the left where you register and pay a small fee. If you haven’t already made arrangements, guides should be easily arranged here. The trail leads up through vegetable plantation and pine woodland. Once out of the farmland the trail is clear and well-defined but the numbering of posts (Pos) is rather unusual and many of them do not have a visible number. After about 90 minutes there is a newly-built hut (1,930m) which would be a great place to stay if making a late start.

Further on is a small stone border pillar (2,159m) and after about 4 hours of hiking you should have reached the signposted Pos 4 (2,655m). Another hour up the trail is a red hut. This is Pos 5 (2,800m) and is an excellent place to shelter or camp because there is a small stream just two minutes down to the left where you can usually find water in the gully. There are plenty of places to set up tents and in good weather there are some nice views to the east.

Behind the red hut the trail continues to lead up the mountain and it is less than an hour to a similar shelter building – painted black. This is known as Pos 7 (3,040m) and lies just below the treeline. In good weather, this is the first place where you can really begin to admire the views. The small Serayu Mountains and the south coast of Java are often visible from here. There are many flat areas where you can pitch a tent and if you are the first to reach Pos 7 you could even pitch it inside the shelter building for added protection from any wind and rain. It can take anything from 6 to 8 hours to reach this shelter. It is by far the best place to camp if you want to climb to the summit for dawn because the summit lies at this side of the mountain. It is about two hours up steep, loose rock to the crater lip and summit ridge. Gloves and a torch you can attach to your head would be very useful here so that you can use both hands. The last huge explosion occurred here in July 1988 and there are frequent fatalities usually due to the toxic gases. The summit ridge itself is usually reasonably safe but it is not a good idea to linger too long near the complex crater area and active fumroles which are about 1km further west.

At the top is an old cement pillar – presumably a triangulation pillar – and a new triangular monument dedicated to the students who lost their lives up here recently. Because of Slamet’s isolation, there are few nearby mountains to admire but in good weather Gunung Ciremai should be visible to the north-west and the huge twins of Sumbing and Sindoro should be seen in the distance to the east. To descend, return the same way, or if you have experienced guides and wish to descend via an alternative route continue beyond the crater area and make sure you are on the correct, well-defined path down to Guci or to Baturaden.

Bagging information by Daniel Quinn

Practicalities

Getting there From Jakarta, take a bus to Purwokerto from Lebak Bulus, or a train (more expensive but faster) from Gambir station to either Tegal (for Guci) or Purwokerto (for Baturaden and Bambangan).
Accommodation Available in Baturaden, Guci and Purwokerto.
Permits Available at Bambangan and Baturaden. Take a photocopy of your passport photo page and sign any guestbooks if requested to do so.
Water sources Water usually available at Pos 2 on the Baturaden route, Pos 5 (2,800m) on the Bambangan route and sometimes Pos 4 (2,577m) on the Guci route.
Recommended Hotel:
Local Average Monthly Rainfall (mm): pangandaran

Location

Origins and Meaning

Mount Safety. Slamet is the Javanese variant of the Malay-Indonesian word selamat meaning “rescued from danger”, “having avoided danger”. In the region around Gunung Slamet local tradition records that in pre-Islamic times the mountain was called Gunung Gora. In Javanese gora is a slightly archaic word meaning “horrible, scary, intimidating”. It is very likely that when the people of the region converted to Islam (probably some time in the 1500s) the forbidding name of the mountain inherited from Hindu-Buddhist / pagan times was changed to the more reassuring Islamic name of Gunung Slamet. See also Gunung Sawal. (George Quinn, 2011)

Links and References

Wikipedia English
Wikipedia Indonesia

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Trip Reports and Comments

19 entries for “Slamet”

  1. avatar

    Hi Gita
    It is not a good idea to climb during the rainy season – I would wait until April/May, especially for anything the size of Slamet!

    Posted by Dan | December 9, 2009, 23:11
  2. avatar

    Hello,

    I’ve got the information about this website from The Jakarta Post last Sunday’s edition.
    It looks really nice and quiet helpfull for me.

    I’d like to ask for your advice if these days are good period to hike this mountain considering the weather.
    Is it going to be too cold and windy for an Indonesian like me :)

    Thank you so much for your kind attention.

    cheers,
    Gita

    Posted by Gita Lusmaya | December 9, 2009, 23:06
  3. avatar

    Hi Dan,

    Thanks for your advice.
    That’s what I was thinking because I had a bit problem with the strong wind when we were climbing Mount Merapi via Boyolali on Oct 12 2009.

    One more thing please, If I’ve reached the top of Sindoro with some difficulties, do you think I would be able to climb Slamet or Semer? Or should I stay with those below 3,000 metre?

    thanks,
    G
    PS: sorry for asking too much….

    Posted by Gita Lusmaya | December 9, 2009, 23:26
  4. avatar

    Gita,
    I would like to have a go at your question if I may. Personally, I thinnk that you should follow your instincts and judgement.It is one thing for some body to say yes you should go above 3,000 meters or no, I think that you should stay below 3,000 meters. Actually I started out with Batur being my first Climb and then worked my way up to Ceremai,Merapi,Gede and so on. My advice would be to pick a mountain around 2500 meters for training within that month.Then fter preperation,research and physical training, just go and attack those big mountains that you dream about. Take proper guides and be cautious and you can do it.

    Posted by Zac Dylan | December 11, 2009, 23:03
  5. avatar

    Hello Zac,

    Thanks so much for your suggestion.
    I appreciate it a lot.
    I have thought about what you said before writting to you but I was still in doubt. Now, I’m sure about it :)

    Cheers,
    G

    Posted by Gita Lusmaya | December 19, 2009, 21:15
  6. avatar

    Just back from Slamet. Up from Bambangan and down to Guci. The taxi from Purwokerto barely made it to the top of the Bambangan road! Finding the trail down to Guci was very difficult – it turned out that our guides weren’t too sure and we ended up descending almost vertically down old lava flows and then hacking through jungle. Luckily we found the correct path eventually. If you’re thinking of heading down to Guci, make sure your guides definitely are familiar with the route or else you could end up getting very lost and spending an additional night on the mountain! Unfortunately there can often be a difference between guides saying they know the way and them actually knowing the way. Great hike though – do-able in a weekend from Jakarta with Kereta Api to Purwokerto or Tegal. Next time I’ll probably descend to Baturaden or back the same way to Bambangan.

    Posted by Dan | April 4, 2010, 02:49
  7. avatar

    Hi Wolfgang, for the summit I would definitely recommend Bambangan though it takes longer to get to the starting point. The shelters are handy for if it rains too. Baturaden is supposed to be open again which is considerably closer to Purwokerto but I think Bambangan is higher anyway. There are quite a few daily trains to Purwokerto from Gambir – both early morning and early evening. Takes about 5/6 hours, have a look here http://kereta-api.co.id/
    For guides, I suggest you ask JL Jenny. If you have no luck, email me via the contact page. Cheers!

    Posted by Dan | April 6, 2010, 19:54
  8. avatar

    Hi Dan, appreciate your infos on Slamet very much, as this is one of the few peaks on java that i did not climb yet. And the infos on the Java Lava website date back to 2006. I plan to go to Slamet May 17 or 18 till 19 or 20. Can you recommend a porter/guide, with hp/E-mail possibly? As I don’t speak bahasa indonesia some basic english is more important than the starting point. Although from your description the best starting point appears to me Bambangan. I understand that the train to Purwokerto starts from Gambir station every morning.
    Best regards
    Wolfgang Piecha

    Posted by wolfgang | April 6, 2010, 15:35
  9. avatar

    Hi Dan,
    just returned from the Baturaden trail to Slamet. The Bambangan route was closed these days, presumably for stronger than usual activities of the volcanoe.
    The Baturaden trail is clearly the longest one compared to Guci and Bambangan. It took me 10 hrs uphill and 7 downhill. In addition, we had 6-8 hours rain, including in the early evening hours when we had to build tent. Lesser experienced trekkers should calculate with eleven to twelve hours trekking upwards, through extended and beautiful stretches of untouched mountain rain forest, with quite some birds and monkeys. I started at 7h from my hotel in Purwokerto by motorbike, at 8h I was on the trail. It is clearly advisable to stay in one of the many Baturaden resorts to be on track at 6:30 or earlier.

    On the trail there are five so-called “pos”s, with some smaller additional campsites in between. None has any shelter or other facilities. The last water supply is at Pos 2, about 2 1/2 hours after starting from the Baturaden Nature Park. There you should make sure to have 5-6 liters of water. After Pos 3 it is getting more and more steep. Pos 5 is just below the tree line. The last stretches before Pos 5 are easy walking on an extended saddle. There is no flat campground to find on Pos 5, except some small area at the very upper end, beyond the last trees, but still protected by some high grass.

    As you walk nearly all way on rarely used paths in a vital jungle the trail is strongly overgrown. We did not need machetes, but we were wet all tour long, even when the rain stopped. Each of us had “invited” 8 to 1o leeches, around the feet, not on our necks.

    From Pos 5 it is another 500m in altitude, between 1:20 hrs and 2 hours to the peak that is visible from Pos 5. It is mostly firmer ground, but with some parts of loose ashes. From Pos 5 you reach the caldera, leaving the big cut in the crater rim to your left, and looking into the huge crater against the rising sun at sunrise.
    Best
    Wolfgang

    Posted by wolfgang | May 22, 2010, 05:02
  10. avatar

    Hi Dan,

    Thanks for the very useful information. We plan to hike Slamet this christmas and based on your advice, experienced guide is essential.

    Appreciate your advice on recommended guides (name and contact number would be great) as we plan to ascend from Bambangan and descend to Baturaden.

    Thanks much
    -dheva-

    Posted by Dheva | December 13, 2010, 04:41
  11. avatar

    Actually I have another question to ask… :p

    If we dont use guide and rely on our GPS and map, do you think is advisable…?

    Thanks
    -dheva-

    Posted by Dheva | December 13, 2010, 04:49
  12. avatar

    Thanks Dan! Really appreciate it

    Posted by Dheva | December 14, 2010, 01:56
  13. avatar

    Unfortunately not – maybe try asking on the Indonesian yahoo groups like highcamp and pangrango…..

    Posted by Dan | December 19, 2010, 23:09
  14. avatar

    Hi Dan,

    Do you have GPS coordinates for batu raden routes ?

    Thanks much

    Posted by Dheva | December 19, 2010, 20:27
  15. avatar

    Hi, we were supposed to climb slamet this wek end with a guide who had checked conditions but upon arrival, the local forbid us to climb from bambangan. Reason was the risk of bushfire.
    Don’t think this was a set up from the guide as he proposed me slamet over sumbing. Went for this one but pissed off by bambangan…

    Posted by Nicolas | August 15, 2011, 11:22
  16. avatar

    Pos 5 and Pos 7 of Bambangan route are are good shelters to camp in. But do not erect your tent inside the shelter(s) because actually the hikers without tent would be dis-advantaged. Another ethic, please be quiet for you do not want to disturb our exhausted friends’ sleeps.

    Around the summit you could easily lose your way without a guide or waypoints. Guci route is longer but the trek is clear and you would not be lost.

    Posted by Handjono | December 25, 2011, 12:34
  17. avatar

    just share.. this is route mt.slamet via baturraden:

    http://www.navigasi.net/gofrm.php?c=FU&t=2600&page=last

    Posted by ferry | May 18, 2012, 16:34
  18. avatar

    Just returned from a 2D1N hike to the summit of Mt. Slamet. We took the Bambangan – Guci route.
    Prior to the climb, I stayed at Villa Anandha Guci for several days to recuperate from the fatique of climbing Mt. Merapi & Merbabu. Soaking in the hot spring sure helped.
    I rented a pick-up truck to go to the trailhead at Bambangan.
    My guide was Udin, the ranger of Mt. Slamet NP in Guci. Warto was our porter. Both know the route well.
    Udin’s hp: +62-818-039-84342.

    The video I made shows the gorgeous display of volcanic gases from the crater including descending the bare rock, slippery scree to Guci:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FHeCoJLpZY&feature=c4-overview&list=UUr-dHMWQ97A46Twwge6HpdA

    Posted by Paulina Werthen | November 13, 2013, 23:18

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