I do hope Dicky got back to Solo before the heavens opened, because that evening it poured. Although the wet season is officially over, there is still alot of rain around, and anyway, I expect a bit up here in the mountains. But the consistent evening rain is making me rethink my plans to climb Gunung Lawu the following day, as I don't have either a sleeping bag or a tent and it doesn't look pretty. My mind is made up next morning when by 8 am the clouds are already gathering: I'll skip the climb and head further afield. I take a Colt up to the start of the mountain climb at Cemoro Sewu, and begin walking down the road to Sarangan, the hill resort for the residents of Madiun. I'm also now in East Java. The walk is lovely, there's very little traffic through this mountain pass, and the surrounding trees are covered in epiphytes and the birds are singing and all is right with the world...Coming in to Sarangan the forest clears to vegetable plots, and at Sarangan itself there is a tiny lake with more speedboats for hire than looks practical. Who said anyone cares about safety here?The next part of my trip includes a number of bus trips. First I take a colt to Magetan, then jump on the waiting bus to Madiun, but a conversation with some men at the station (this is where I'm glad of some local language skills) sees me jumping on a Surabaya bound bus instead to Nganjuk, where I hop on a Blitar bound bus. Although I have to jump buses in Kediri, I at last arrive in Blitar at 5pm. I get a room in a hotel and arrange a tour for the morning. That's next.
Here's the rest of the photos.