Me on the Merapi volcano

This picture shows me about halfway up on the Merapi volcano, sometime in the spring of 1991. The volcano behind me is called Merbabu. Merapi is about 2911 metres above sea level and located approximately 70 kilometers north of Yogyakarta in central Java, Indonesia.

Climbing the Merapi was a pretty awesome journey. We had to start from the village Selo around midnight in order to make it to the top by sunrise. We did make it, but this particular morning was so cloudy we couldn't see much. But there were some moments that gave us a spectacular view. It felt like being on top of the world. The smell of sulpha, the freezing cold air and those moments of clarity made it all worth the more than five hour long climb.

Meanwhile, while we were having a lifetime experience, our two Indonesian guides were smoking cigarettes and chatting about everyday life, having just another day at work.