Photo: Starting the long climb down.

How to prepare for climbing Gunung Agung

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Until I climbed Rinjani, climbing Bali’s Gunung Agung was easily the most physically taxing activity I had ever done. And while this was my second attempt (the first was unsuccessful as someone in our group couldn’t go on), I still wasn’t as prepared as I could have been. Other climbers I saw on the day were not prepared at all. While this isn’t a technical climb, it is a difficult one and you’ll make it a little easier for yourself by keeping the following points in mind.

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Treat the mountain with respect This is the holiest mountain on Bali. Treat it with the respect it deserves. Just about every house and building on the island has a shrine for daily offerings to Agung. This is a highly revered site.

A prayer for the mountain. Photo taken in or around How to prepare for climbing Gunung Agung, Sidemen, Indonesia by Stuart McDonald.

A prayer for the mountain. Photo: Stuart McDonald

Which route Gunung Agung has two primary trekking routes. The more popular leaves from Pura Pasar Agung and leads to the crater rim, which is 2,866 metres above sea level. The less popular (and apparently even more difficult route) leaves from Pura Besakih and leads right to the absolute summit at 3,031 metres. While everything I had read indicated you had to leave from Besakih to reach the true summit, I saw a group on the day I climbed who started from Pasar Agung but then branched off to reach the summit. Talk to your guide ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 1,500 words.)

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