to the top of Anak Krakatau
first we anchored under the tall cliff in a bit of a bay off the
northwest of Rakata. We were anchored just 50 m off the shore
because it is very steep right up to the beach. This anchorage
provides a great view of Anak Krakata which is only three miles
north across the water. The water between the two islands is deep,
more than 100 m in places. This is where Krakatau used to be.
The eruption not only blew most of the island into the sky, it
also blew an enormous hole in the sea. It's hard to get your head
around the scale of that destruction.
1930 Anak Krakatau was born and has been growing steadily ever
since. It is now 320 m high. In calm weather it is possible to
anchor off the beach on the northeast of the island. From where
we sat at anchor it looked like any other island, a beach bordered
by a lush looking forest. But beyond the forest looms the black
bare volcanic cone.
beach is used as a fising camp. There's also a shelter from where
a path leads through the forest to the first ashy slope. The forest
is only about 100 m wide and soon there are only a few casuarina
trees and tafts of tall grass left.
a steep slope, but not far to the first top. From there you can
see a path all the way to the top of the imposing dark highest
cone. As you go up further the heat increases. Here and there
the rocks are steaming and when you grab a handful of gravel it
to the top you come to the rim of a large crater. Around the rim
are many patches of smoking yellow smelly sulphur. Some areas
are white and hot, the rocks here disintegrate underfoot like
burned charcoal. Most rocks are black or red.
is possible to walk all the way around the rim. One area is very
hot and sulphurous, breathing here is a little unpleasant. Here
and there the sulphurous rocks are very bright yellow and rather
beautiful. The white patches are the hottest and you can feel
the heat through the soles of your shoes.
view from the rim of the crater is spectacular. Looking south
Rakata looks very majestic, towards the northeast is the big volcano
Sebesi. Looking down the slope the way we came we could see Jocara
bobbing peacefully at anchor.
Krakatau seemed quiet when we were there, but the forces of nature
at play here are incredible.