Am I fit enough to climb Mt Rinjani
That’s the question that every prospective climber needs to ask themselves. There’s nothing more disappointing
than attempting the climb, only to have turn back with the peak in sight.
To avoid disappointment, it’s best to know what you’re letting yourself in for. Climbing mt Rinjani is tough- but achievable
Here it is in plain, simple language: climbing to the summit of mountain Rinjani is difficult, for most regular tourists, it is likely to be one of the physically demanding things you will ever attempt, but this is eminently achievable with preparation and care once you’re up on the mountain.
As you would expect, the trek is predominantly uphill, from starting point until the summit, the walk would be
physically taxing with the lack of oxygen, climber become more fatigued far more quickly.
How fit I need to be?
That said, you don’t have to be an elite athlete to complete the climb. If you undertake regular exercise – power
walking, jogging, social or competitive sport – on a weekly basis, you’re more than likely going to be fit enough to
reach the summit.
Even if you consider yourself pretty fit, every little bit of preparation will help. In the weeks leading up to the climb, go on a couple of walks where sharp inclines make up a large part of the trail. It’ll help your muscle become aware of the efforts required.
If you’re looking to climb Rinjani, but you’re a bit concerned about your ability to do so, don’t be panic.
Three months out from the climb, star going for a brisk walk for 45 minutes, at least twice a week. Just around
your local neighbourhood will do for a start. Build up to some incline walks in the last six weeks before you depart
and you should be fine.
Also don’t attempt the climb with any hint of an injury. Your legs will take enough of a beating ascending and
descending the mountain without being compromised by an existing ailment.
How many people make it?
To give you an idea of the attrition rate, more than 90% of the climbers who attempted the summit on my expedition
were successful. They ranged from 20 year old teenagers to enthusiastic tourists in their 60s, and everything in
between, there was a small number of climbers who felt they’d achieved enough by reaching summit. No small feat
in itself!, but a handful of climbers attempted the summit walk and were forced to turn back, either pre-empting their own difficulties or suffering greatly from altitude sickness.
Effect of high altitude
High altitude can bring even the fitness climbers undone. Take it easy from the beginning of the walk. While it might
fell easy in the first hour, you will need those energy reserve later. The same applies for the summit attempt the
following morning .keep it slow and steady and you should be fine.
Some people are affected more than others by altitude sickness. It tends to take effect on the Mt. Rinjani climb in
last couple of kilometres to the summit. All climbers will experience an elevated heart rate, even when resting, and
a feeling of breathlessness near the summit. For most, a slight headache will be their only other symptom. It’s more
than manageable with paracetamol and plenty of water.
However, others can be overcome by nausea. Other than climbing at a slow, steady pace, there is little that can be
done to avoid altitude sickness if you’re prone to it. The only remedy for altitude sickness is to return to lower
altitude – there is no magic pill, unfortunately! Of course, the fitter you are, the more likely you are to be able to cope.