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Gunung Agung adalah gunung tertinggi di pulau Bali dengan ketinggian 3.142 mdpl. Gunung ini terletak di kecamatan Rendang Kab.Karangasem - Bali.

Gunung Agung adalah gunung berapi tipe strato, gunung ini memiliki kawah yang sangat besar dan sangat dalam yang kadang - kadang melepaskan asap dan uap air. Dari Pura Besakih gunung ini nampak runcing sempurna, padahal puncak gunung ini memanjang dan berakhir pada kawah yang melingkar dan lebar. Pendakian menuju puncak gunung ini dapat dimulai dari tiga jalur pendakian yaitu :
-Dari selatan adalah dari selat lewat sangkan kuasa.
-Dari tenggara ialah dari Budakeling lewat nangka
-Dari Barat daya yang merupakan jalur pendakian yang umum digunakan oleh para pendaki yaitu dari Pura Besakih.

JALUR PURA BESAKIH

Jalur ini sering dipakai pendaki, selain melewati kompleks pura Besakih yang terkenal , kita akan melihat pemandangan yang sangat mengesankan disepanjang perjalanan. Disepanjang jalur ini tidak terdapat mata air sehingga pendaki harus membawa bekal air yang banyak.

Menjelang batas hutan terakhir sebenarnya terdapat mata air yang disucikan oleh masyarakat, namun tidak boleh sembarang orang untuk ke sana.

Tidak terdapat pos khusus untuk para pendaki, namun pendaki wajib melaporkan diri di kantor polisi di pintu gerbang Pura Besakih. Untuk kelengkapan surat-surat sebaiknya siapkan surat jalan dari sekolah/kampus atau RT/RW. Tidak dikenakan biaya administrasi tetapi sebaiknya kita memberi secara suka rela.

Kita dapat juga bermalam di pos polisi ini jika kemalaman pada saat turun gunung. Tidak banyak informasi yang dapat diperoleh dari petugas (polisi) tentang gunung, kecuali catatan kecelakaan yang terjadi di Gunung. Bila hendak menyewa ranger (guide) biayanya berkisar Rp.400.000,- Dari para guide lokal inilah informasi tentang gunung baru bisa diperoleh.

Agar selamat sebaiknya pendaki singgah di pura untuk berdoa, pantangan bagi pendaki agar tidak membawa daging sapi dalam bentuk apapun. Pada saat ada upacara besar biasanya pendaki dilarang naik karena menurut kepercayaan dan pengalaman masyarakat setempat biasanya sering terjadi kecelakaan pada saat ada upacara besar.

Pendakian menuju puncak gunung agung ini akan melewati tempat-tempat ibadah orang bali, sehingga bagi para pendaki yang ketika akan mendaki mendapati upacara keagamaan disarankan agar menunda pendakiannya untuk menghormati ritual keagamaan tersebut. Disamping itu jalur yang dilalui sempit apa bila berjumpa dengan iring-iringan masyarakat yang hendak mengadakan upacara di gunung, ke beradaan para pendaki sangat mengganggu perjalanan mereka yang membawa berbagai sesaji.

Tim merbabu-com dalam perjalanan menuju puncak Gn.Agung bertemu dengan iring-iringan masyarakat bali yang hendak mengadakan upacara Tirta Suci.

Mereka membawa berbagai bentuk sesaji salah satunya kambing hidup, dengan cepat mereka berjalan menuju puncak gunung, sementara Tim Merbabu-Com berjalan dibelakang mereka agar tidak mengganggu perjalanan mereka. Sebelumnya kami minta ijin kepada pemimpin upacara tersebut untuk mendaki ke puncak.

Perjalanan diawali dari pura puseh lewat pura plawangan ke pura telaga mas kemudian perjalanan dilanjutkan ke tirta dasar sampai di batas hutan terakhir atau dinamakan hutan pengubengan. Melewati kompleks pura jalanan tertata rapi, kemudian kita memasuki kawasan hutan yang agak landai sekitar 1/2 jam, selebihnya jalur terus menanjak.

Jalur yang dilewati sempit dengan sisi kiri kanan jurang, jalur ini terdiri dari tanah bercampur pasir dan kerikil sehingga sangat licin, bila hujan jalur akan semakin parah. Terdapat banyak tanjakan terjal melalui akar-akar pohon dengan berpegangan menggunakan akar.

Dalam kawasan hutan ini jalur sempit sehingga bila berjumpa dengan pendaki lain harus minggir, juga hampir tidak ada tempat yang cukup luas untuk membuka tenda. Itulah sebabnya para pendaki sangat mengganggu masyarakat yang sedang mengadakan upacara di gunung. Menjelang batas akhir hutan jalur berupa pasir yang sangat licin dan mudah merosot.

Perkemahan dapat dilakukan pada ketinggian 2500 meter atau setelah 5 jam pendakian melalui kawasan hutan. Di sini menjadi batas akhir hutan dan jalur agak lega dan terdapat tempat yang sedikit terbuka. Banyak terdapat monyet yang pemalu, mereka mengikuti pendaki namun tidak berani mendekat, berbeda dengan monyet di gunung Rinjani yang sangat berani dan mengganggu pendaki.

Di siang hari tampak monyet-monyet bermain-main di lereng-lereng yang sangat terjal. Di tempat ini Tim skrekanek memberi sesaji kepada dewa hanoman, berupa buah-buahan. Dari titik ini pendaki dapat melakukan point atau terus mendaki selama 3 jam sampai ke puncak kawah gunung Agung sebelah tenggara.

Jalur berikutnya berupa tebing curam dengan batu-batu besar, pendaki harus merangkak dan memanjat tebing ini, pendaki harus mencari sendiri sisi tebing yang mana yang nyaman dipanjat. Selain sangat curam juga sangat berbahaya karena dibawahnya batu-batu besar siap menyambut kita bila sampai tergelincir kebawah, bisa-bisa pendaki akan menggelinding ke jurang yang lebih dalam lagi.

Setelah berhasil memanjat tebing, meskipun tanpa peralatan panjat tebing, kita akan disambut oleh lereng terjal dan tandus. Disini pendaki harus merangkak mendaki ke atas karena keterjalannya yang sangat curam. Pendaki akan tertipu seolah-olah disinilah puncak gunung agung, setelah bersusah payah memanjat tebing ini pendaki akan kecewa karena setelah sampai di puncak tebing tampak menjulang tinggi bukit pasir dan batuan yang jauh lebih tinggi dan lebih berbahaya.

Puncak tertinggi berada di sebelah barat daya, yakni sebuah bukit berbatu yang tandus dari batu gunung berapi yang runcing. Untuk menuju kawah Gunung Agung kita melewati beberapa puncak gunung yang berpasir dan jalur sangat sempit dan memanjang.

Jalur ini sangat curam dan berbahaya, lebih-lebih jika ada angin kencang dan badai akan semakin membahayakan pendaki.

Kawah gunung agung lebar melingkar dan sangat curam disisi luar, dan tegak lurus kecuramannya di sisi dalam kawah.

Setiap tahun diadakan upacara dengan sesaji kerbau yang diceburkan ke dalam kawah melewati jalur selat ( sisi selatan ), karena tidak mungkin untuk melalui jalur Pura Besakih. Pendaki bisa berjalan di sepanjang sisi kawah untuk menuju jalur pendakian yang lain.

Dari puncak gunung Agung kita dapat melihat puncak Gunung Rinjani yang berada di pulau Lombok, meskipun kedua gunung tertutup awan karena kedua puncak gunung tersebut berada di atas awan. Pagi hari udara masih bersih sehingga kita dapat memandang gunung-gunung lainnya di pulau bali, menjelang siang badan dan puncak Gunung Agung diselimuti awan sepanjang hari.

Mencapai puncak Gunung Agung yang suci ini menjadi suatu kebanggaan tersendiri dan akan lebih berarti lagi bila disertai dengan perenungan diri, meditasi, atau bersembahyang, disamping pemandangan pulau Bali yang sangat indah dari puncak gunung.

Keberhasilan mencapai puncak Gunung agung bukan berarti perjalanan kita telah berakhir, karena menuruni puncak Gunung Agung bahkan lebih berbahaya dari pada mendaki, stamina dan semangat pendaki biasanya sudah menurun padahal kita harus tetap berkonsentrasi penuh.

Kadang pendaki menjadi pusing dan ngeri ketika menuruni puncak Gunung yang sangat curam dan berbahaya, karena memandang ke bawah tanpa terhalang pohon pemandangan jurang yang sangat dalam. Untuk itu jangan tinggalkan teman berjalanlah secara beriringan dalam jarak dekat, tingkatkan solidaritas sehingga dapat menghibur dan saling membangkitkan semangat.

Sesampai di pos polisi bila Anda kelelahan dan kemalaman dapat menumpang tidur di sini. Banyak terdapat toilet yang disewakan dan warung-warung disekitar pos. Terdapat banyak penginapan penduduk di sekitar Pura Besakih. Bila anda beruntung dapat menyaksikan upacara keagamaan yang diiringi dengan tari-tarian. Dari Pura Besakih ini hampir tidak ada kendaraan umum, karena para turis biasanya menyewa mobil. Di pagi hari biasanya ada kendaraan umum menuju kota terdekat.

Untuk menghilangkan rasa capek pergilah ke pantai kuta, mandi dan berjemur dipantai sepanjang hari bermain dengan ombak yang besar dan pasir, sampil melihat bule-bule berjemur dijamin lupa akan segala penderitaan di gunung. Tim Merbabu-Com bermain dan berlari-lari di pantai kuta, lupa kalau kaki masih sakit dan badan pegal-pegal. Malam hari ketika tidur Anda akan bermimpi ganda antara gunung dan pantai. Keesokan harinya Tim Merbabu-Com menikmati ombak yang lebih tenang dan bermain kano di pantai sanur. Dari sini kami dapat memandang gunung Agung yang penuh dengan keagungannya.

There are two routes up the mountain, one from Besakih which proceeds to the higher western peak and starts at approximately 1,100 m (3,610 ft). The second route which is reputed to take four hours (one-way) proceeds to the southern peak and commences higher from Pura Pasar Agung, near Selat. A path connecting the southern ascent with the western ascent is available during the dry season. Cecilie Scott[5] provides an account of the ascent from Pura Pasar Agung to the southern peak. Greg Slayden describes a climb from Besakih[6] claimed to have taken a remarkable four and a half hours to the peak and Ken Taylor[7] that took much longer and which included getting lost.

Guides are available in Besakih and also in Pura Pasar Agung. The mountain can also be climbed without a guide. The climb from Besakih is quite tough. It is sometimes tackled as a single climb generally starting about 10.00pm for a dawn arrival at the peak and sometimes with an overnight camp about three quarters of the way up. The climb from Pura Pasar Agung generally starts around 2.30 am for a dawn arrival. It is far harder than the more popular Balinese climb up Gunung Batur. It is not a mountain that needs ropes and not quite high enough for altitude sickness but adverse weather conditions develop quickly and warm waterproof clothing is required and should be carried. A dawn arrival at the top is recommended in order to avoid clouds that typically cover the top from approximately 9 am onwards. There is no water available along the route.

For the Besakih route proceed through the temple complex then continue on a path that travels continuously upwards on a steep narrow spur through open forest and jungle most of the way. There is little potential to get lost until the route opens up towards the top where the correct route doubles backwards. Many climbers miss this turn and continue up a small valley which can be climbed out of with some difficulty.

Mount Agung or Gunung Agung is a mountain in Bali, Indonesia. This stratovolcano is the highest point on the island. It dominates the surrounding area influencing the climate. The clouds come from the west and Agung takes their water so that the west is lush and green and the east dry and barren.

The Balinese believe that Mount Agung is a replica of Mount Meru, the central axis of the universe. One legend holds that the mountain is a fragment of Meru brought to Bali by the first Hindus. The most important temple on Bali, Pura Besakih, is located high on the slopes of Gunung Agung.

Gunung Agung last erupted in 1963-64 and is still active, with a large and very deep crater which occasionally belches smoke and ash. From a distance, the mountain appears to be perfectly conical, despite the existence of the large crater.

From the peak of the mountain, it is possible to see the peak of Mount Rinjani on the island of Lombok, although both mountains are frequently covered in clouds.

On february 18, 1963, local residents heard loud explosions and saw clouds rising from the crater of Mount Agung. On February 24, lava began flowing down the northern slope of the mountain, eventually traveling 7 km in the next 20 days. On March 17, the volcano erupted (VEI 5), sending debris 810 km into the air and generating massive pyroclastic flows. These flows devastated numerous villages, killing approximately 1500 people. Cold lahars caused by heavy rainfall after the eruption killed an additional 200. A second eruption on flows which killed another 200 inhabitants.

The lava flows missed, sometimes by mere yards, the Mother Temple of Besakih. The saving of the temple is regarded by the Balinese people as miraculous and a signal from the gods that they wished to demonstrate their power but not destroy the monument the Balinese faithful had erected.

Flora and fauna

Wild pigs and macaques abound on the forested slopes of Mount Agung. Birdlife is impressive including frequent sightings of hawks and eagles, but is not as obvious and easy to observe as in the West Bali National Park.

Mount Agung dominates the surrounding area influencing the climate. The clouds come from the west and Agung takes their water so that the west is lush and green and the east dry and barren.

The best time to climb Mount Agung is in the dry season of April to October. January and February should certainly be avoided if possible due to heavy rain, possible flooding and even landslides in the area.

At lower elevations it remains tropical but becomes distinctly cold and often very windy on the high bare rock slopes.

Mount Agung is most commonly approached from the south via Klungkung and Candidasa, from the west via Besakih, or from the east via Tirta Gangga and Karangasem. The east coast road north from Amed through Tulamben and onto Singaraja provides some awe-inspiring views of the mountain across flat rubble plans.

Mount Agung is viewed as sacred and for that reason is off limits to climbers during important ceremonies. Your guide will know and will also be able to obtain any necessary permissions from temple administrators for which some nominal donation may be required.

Guide fees may vary between about Rp 400,000 and Rp 1,000,000 depending on how you arrange the guide, the route taken and the level of English expected. Generally it is possible to put all arrangements in place once you reach Bali, but for peace of mind you might want to make contact with guides before you leave home. Some guides speak far better English than others.

There are three climbing routes up the mountain, all are difficult and unless you are physically fit and have some serious trekking experience, do not even attempt any of these climbs. 

From Besakih (west). This is a demanding climb starting close to Besakih temple. The ascent will take about 6 to 7 hours and ends at the very highest point of the mountain. The final hour or so is exceptionally demanding often requiring ascent on all fours. A sensible start time is about 11PM, so that you arrive at the top before dawn and wait for the sunrise. Allow as long to get down as it took you to get up.

From Pura Pasar Agung (south). A three to four hour climb in which time you ascend about 2,000 metres. Not so stiff as the Besakih route. The route ends about 100 metres below the actual summit, but the views are still excellent in all directions, as well as down into the actual crater. A sensible start time would be about 2:30 AM, again with aim of reaching the peak just before dawn.

A new way turn left at the middle of the climbing to reach the summit in 4 hours. Only experienced people can follow this road.

From Duku Bujangga Sakti (north). A seldom used route but one which is most appropriate for less experienced trekkers and the slightly less physically fit. The ascent starts at 300 metres and involves an overnight camp at 1,700 metres, before the final ascent in the pre-dawn hours the following day. This route also allows you to walk around the rim of the crater to the absolute summit of the mountain. Mount Agung viewed from the east Mount Agung viewed from the east  Guides

The service of a local guide is absolutely essential. Guides can be arranged in advance via your hotel (especially if you are staying in Candidasa or Amed), at the Pura Pasar Agung temple close to the time of your planned climb, or via the following contacts.

Wayan WIDI YASA is a local guide who first discovered the new road to the top from Pura Pasar Agung. Tel: +62 852 372 50607.

Gung Bawa Trekking. Gung Bawa is an experienced local Balinese guide with great reviews since 1996. He will guide you on the Besakih or Pura Pasar Agung route. Has an office in the village of Selat close to the the start of the Pura Pasar Agung trek route. About Rp 500,000 per person.

Pondok Wisata Agung is a simple losmen in the village of Selat and they offer guides for the southern ascent from about Rp 400,000. Tel: +62 366 23037.

MG Trekking at Balina Beach in Candidasa specialise in the little used northern ascent from Duku Bujangga Sakti.

Pura Pasar Agung is one of Bali's nine directional temples and it sits at the start point of one of the ascent routes up Mount Agung. It is close to the village of Selat on the main road from Rendang to Karangasem.

The Sidemen/Selat area is stunningly beautiful. It incorporates several valleys in the foothills of Mount Agung on the route between Karangasem and Rendang. The drive through this area is most scenic and one of the very best in Bali. Stunning rice terraces, lush forested hill-sides and the mountain itself, all combine to make this a magical area to visit. If you stop in the village of Selat it is easy to find local guides for undemanding hikes in the area.

Besakih is known as the Mother Temple of Bali. Besides being the most important temple for the whole of the island, another attraction of Besakih, actually a complex of temples, is its dramatic location on the southern slopes of Mount Agung. Part of the Besakih Temple complex. Part of the Besakih Temple complex. 

The usual way to get to Besakih is from Klungkung. Besakih is about 20km north of the town centre. The road is not too bad, if a little winding at times. There is also a back road to Besakih south from Kintamani, and the hour-long drive is beautiful as you pass through forests, villages and fields. The road meets the main Besakih-Klungkung road just before the entrance to Besakih. If you are coming from the eastern end of the island, such as from Amed, Tirta Gangga or Candidasa, you can also get to Besakih by taking a smaller inland road from Karangasem. The road goes through small villages such as Selat and the Bukit Putung lookout, and meets the Besakih-Klungkung road at Rendang, where you turn north (right) to head up to Besakih. The official car park fee at Besakih is Rp 5,000 per vehicle.

Bemos run to Besakih from Klungkung. They are most frequent in the morning. You may have to change bemos at Rendang halfway between Klungkung and Besakih.

Mount Agung last erupted in 1963, causing devastation in the eastern part of Bali and beyond.

Ancient Balinese texts demand that the most important of Balinese Hindu rituals, the Eka Dasa Rudra, is performed every 100 years to purify our world. Such a ceremony was scheduled at Besakih temple in 1963. In February of that year Mount Agung started to rumble, and high priests argued that this was a bad omen from the Gods and that the wrong date had been scheduled for the ceremony. By this time though President Sukarno had arranged to attend with a group of foreign dignatories and he ordered that the event must go ahead.

On March 8th the mountain was in a full pre-eruption phase and on March 18th it blew with such force that the top 100 metres or more was blasted away. Lava spewed over much of eastern Bali, a devastating gas cloud swept across villages and ash destroyed all crops. Up to 2,000 people are thought to have died and tens of thousands of homes were destroyed. Quite remarkably, the mother temple of Besakih perched high on the slopes of the mountain was relatively untouched by this event, fuelling the local spritual reasoning for the eruption. Further, many Balinese argued that this eruption was a portent of dreadful things to come and felt vindicated when the whole nation was plunged into civil crisis in 1965.

The cleansing rituals from the 1963 ceremonies were finally finished at Besakih in 1979.

Kijang, ayam hutan, jalak Bali, lutung Bali.

Dari Kota Denpasar menyewa mobil ke Pure Besakih.
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