shanlung (shanlung) wrote,

Bali Lombok and Komodo dragons Part 2 of 2

Continued from
Bali Lombok and Komodo dragons Part 1 of 2

More photos in BLK 03 Komodo

I signed up with Perama tour. I felt for this trip that I thought about for 30 years, I might
as well go on a bigger boat. In view of the sinking of a smaller boat on a komodo tour, this boat that you can see in photos later got a couple of life rafts, not like that smaller boat without any life rafts. I been in the captain cabin and saw he got echo sounder that the other smaller boat did not have. I did not believe in good and cheap things, as that can either be good or cheap and not both at same time.

17 May 2014
Their bus picked us up from our hotel. And we set off to their jetty on the other side of the island.
Passing through the busy market of Mataram, the main city of Lombok


And we got onto our boat.


We unwind and got to know fellow passengers. Not all on same trip. Some would be getting off at Flores to continue on their trips.

Luckily the camera recovered enough to take the next photo.
Me on the boat. The setting on my camera went all wrong and none of the photos taken on Satonda island with an inland extremely salty lake came out with all over exposed. You float in that lake like in Dead Sea. How that lake became so salty despite being so near the sea I could not figure out.

Luckily the camera recovered enough to take the next photo.


Of me and an island with a rather flat volcano behind me, about 1,800++ meters high.
That volcano was much higher and bigger.
What you see in that photo is the remnants of Mount Tambora. In 1815, that was 4,300 meters high.

Mount Tambora (or Tamboro) is an active stratovolcano which is a peninsula of the island of Sumbawa, Indonesia. Sumbawa is flanked both to the north and south by oceanic crust, and Tambora was formed by the active subduction zone beneath it. This raised Mount Tambora as high as 4,300 m (14,100 ft),[4] making it, in the 18th century, one of the tallest peaks in the Indonesian archipelago. After a large magma chamber inside the mountain filled over the course of several decades, volcanic activity reached a historic climax in the eruption of 10 April 1815.[5] This eruption was about a volcanic explosivity index (VEI) of 7, the only eruption unambiguously confirmed of that size since the Lake Taupo eruption in about 180 CE.[6] (The Heaven Lake eruption of Baekdu Mountain around 969 CE may have also been VEI-7.)

With an estimated ejecta volume of 160 km3 (38 cu mi), Tambora's 1815 outburst was the largest volcanic eruption in recorded history. The explosion was heard on Sumatra island more than 2,000 km (1,200 mi) away. Heavy volcanic ash falls were observed as far away as Borneo, Sulawesi, Java, and Maluku Islands. Most deaths from the eruption were from starvation and disease, as the eruptive fallout ruined agricultural productivity in the local region. The death toll was at least 71,000 people, of whom 11,000–12,000 were killed directly by the eruption;[6] the often-cited figure of 92,000 people killed is believed to be overestimated.[7]

The eruption caused global climate anomalies that included the phenomenon known as "volcanic winter": 1816 became known as the "Year Without a Summer" because of the effect on North American and European weather. Crops failed and livestock died in much of the Northern Hemisphere, resulting in the worst famine of the 19th century.[6]

Mount Helen coughed out 1.3 cubic km
Pinantubo vomited out 10 cubic km.
Mighty Krakatoa threw out 18 cubic km
Tambora erupted out 160 cubic km.

On that entire boat, only this gentleman knew of Tambora and was as excited as myself to catch sight of it

On 19 May 2014 morning, we neared Komodo Island

And then on Komodo


The ranger guiding us showed us deers were plentiful on the island. Very important as food for the komodo dragons.



We saw flocks of sulphur crested cockatoos.

You might be amused as to how they got their names. Those were very well known birds of Indonesia. And their local name was
Burung (indonesian for bird) kakaktua. Which became cockatoo in English. And the scientific bird family was Cacatuidae.

Land of the Komodo Dragons

More photos in BLK 03 Komodo

And the first of the dragon we saw on that trek



Good to have telephoto lense so I need not get close to take close up shots

And then more cockatoos


We got back to the park HQ and saw more dragons.
The Park HQ shifted away from the village. There used to be staged feeding of goats to dragons but that lead to familarity and very dangerous encounters between dragons and villagers and visitors.




We then left that Komoda dragons. The boat brought us to a beach further down that Komodo Island



The water was very cold because of up welling currents. The coral reef was just 15 meters from the shore line.
The corals were the most brilliant and alive that I had seen for a very long time. Later I found out that was one of the best place for corals and diving in all of Indonesia.

We then continued on to Flores, the place where remnants of Hobbits were found. Drop off those who got off there, and picked up those coming back to Lombok



Next morning, we were at Rinca Island for more dragons



As we walked into the park from the jetty, a dragon was seen moving fast, luckily not towards us.


Safety talk from the ranger. The score for 2013 was 4 rangers being bitten, and one for 2014. Dragons got very nasty bites loaded with bacteria to do very very nasty things. On top of that, they recently found they got venom as well.


In the park HQ, dragons hang out

More photos in BLK 03 Komodo




Then we went on the walkabout.


Saw this creek


and in that creek, was this water buffalo. Mighty as the buffalo could be, all that was needed was just a bite from a dragon. And in a day or two, the buffalo will die of blood poisoning to be torn apart by the dragons.


Land of dragons




And back to HQ


And walking towards the jetty and boat



And the fun started. A big dragon was on the path itself. Please excuse me for not taking photos. I was very busy then trying to get up the cut slope as screamed by the wardens to all of us. I did what I thought I was unable to do and got up the slope in time for the dragon to hurry past me on the path. Only when the dragon went pass that I got down to take the rest of the photos.
I made sure that there were other more juicy tourists and warden between me and that dragon.






We got back on the mother boat. Note the life rafts in capsule on both sides of boat.
The cheaper tours apparently did not have life rafts. You get what you pay for. Such as on 17 Aug 2014



We passed by this island on 20 May on the way back to Lombok. It was such a huge beautiful eye catching island that I had to take photos of it. Especially as it took about 3-4 hours to sail past it. This was Gunong Sangeang Api.

More photos in BLK 03 Komodo




On 31 May 2014, that Sangeang Api exploded and grounded flights in that region and Australia. I would have taken fabulous shots
if that went up on 20 May instead of waiting until 31 May.

The next morning , 21 May, we reached Moyo Island. Walking through their beautiful village.



To reach a jungle pool with a rope swing



And on way back, saw an eel at wrong place and wrong time and ended as dinner for some folks there.


Got back into Lombok that evening. Never before I endured 5 days without Internet.
I found not only I survived no Internet, but discovered more of life.

Bus brought us to Senggigi where I checked into a nice cheap hotel. Which got Internet. Did not check fine print which said Internet wifi in their restaurant across the road. What the heck! I will not quibble that as I knew I would leave the next morning to stay up the mountain of Lombok, up Mount Riniani.

Folks go there to trek to the top. I just want to go there to chill out.

Lombok & Bali

More in flickr folder BLK 04 LombokBali

Via the wonky Internet, I tried to check into Restu By View. Could not check in but retain that name. I got a taxi via my hotel (which I forgot that name) to bring me there. I thought I wanted to chill out a few days before getting back to Bali and flight back to Singapore.


The fields that reached up the side of the mountain as seen from the hotel.

The side that I stayed in for a couple of nights

The other side and older side of the hotel.

Monkeys climbing up the pillar into the hotel

The monkeys would take anything that was loose so care got to be taken.
The Internet wifi promised in their advert did not exist in reality. Which got me going to sleep early.
And therefore getting up early. Early enough to shoot sunrise and getting some nice crepuscular shots.


I told the hotel owner I wanted to stay for 4 nights. I was told I need to move to the older section after 2 nights.
I did not care to bust my lungs and legs on the trek to the top. Getting to the waterfalls was about all I felt I wanted to handle



followed by walking about the area near the hotel looking for wifi Internet. Not that I could find that either



I shifted over to the older room.

Something was biting me on the bed when I went to sleep. I thought that might be mosquitoes. But I had lighted mosquito coils.
I turned on the light.
To my horror I found the bed had bed bugs



I had a horror of bedbugs.

I slept on the tile floor after I sprayed a circle of insecticide around me. I was furious but nothing could be done at night other than to call that taxi and told him he was to pick me up the very next morning.
I complained to the hotel owner. He laughed as he thought it was funny.

So remember the Restu by View at Mount Rinjani if you want to be bitten by bedbugs. I am sure by now the bed bugs would be into all the rooms. I seen other hotels also had beautiful views even if they never stated that in their writeup. I am sure other hotels there do not have bed bugs.

I was picked up by the taxi taking me to the ferry point for slow ferry back to Bali. Got to Bali late afternoon and caught a cab telling him to take me to Sanur beach. I told him to recommend me a medium hotel.

I was taken to Swastika Bungalow, a beautiful and inexpensive place that I will happily recommend to anyone.
I took the standard room at about USD50/night. I was shown their superior room for USD80 which was truly superior. But I felt standard was enough for me.


More in flickr folder BLK 04 LombokBali

Brought all my clothing to the hotel laundry to get that washed. And sprayed insecticide into my bags to kill any bed bugs that might have hitched ride from Restu by View.

Had dinner at the Swastika Restaurant of the most delicious suckling pig dish ever in Bali


Sanur beach was a better experience than Kuta Beach. I first knew Bali from Kuta Beach except that belong only in the past.
Sanur beach was a better area and more up market than Kuta.
I chilled in Sanur until I flew off noon flight to Singapore on 27th May 2014.

Finished this on 21 Sept 2014 just prior to my planned departure to Nepal , Pokhara and Kagbeni and beyond.

21 Sept 2014

I have kicked Old Nic for Two years, seven incredible months, three wonderful weeks, two luvly days, 17 bloody hours, 47 misc minutes and 18 odd seconds. of cold turkey after about 45++ years of smoking. 49303 cigarettes not smoked, saving $25,884.49. Life saved: 24 weeks, 3 days, 4 hours, 35 minutes.

LiBai mash making.
About 300 grams of beef mince, with 200 grams of chicken mince and 150 grams of dried anchovies(for the calcium). That was all done up to the kitty mash formula I wrote about in
Pakistan//Tinkerbell Kitty Mash//Dommie at the beach Ramadhan 2010 //Villa walkabout 2
Instead of the almond and brazil nuts, about 100 grams of human grade groundnuts(peanuts) were used.

Making of Tinkerbell Mash
Morning with Harry & the decision// Sultan of Oman Palace// Tinkerbell Mash Batch 7

suri - Read "Conditioning clicker day 3 - and some tips on suris"

milli - read "Found the perfect treat and Yingshiong first "step up""

if you forgotten about clicker training

Tinkerbell Legacy - VH parrot and Clicker Training Rant 06

Some thoughts on clicker - The initial experience with Tinkerbell

Clicker training and bonding with Tinkerbell

To Shanlung-Charlie and clicker training

Charlie and clicker training - beyond touch target //LiBai on finger and in slow motion videos —

Tinkerbell Legacy - - Rant 03 (a flighted parrot mentality) & Understanding the mind of your grey
Above is probably the most important of all I have written, and the foundation to all that I have done.


(edited on 4th November 2011 to include below)

To Shanlung - How to do Free Flight Outside

If what I wrote help you and you like to help, give a thought
for the wildlife sharing our planet.
Do write that cheque to Gerald Durrell wildlife trust

I am a life member of Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust. Do join us to do
whatever we can for the wildlife that shared our planet.

Durrell-life member
or to any wildlife conservation body of your choice

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