Jakarta Climbers

After two days of house-hunting in Semarang, we set off to Bandung with the Jakarta Climbers. The day was organised by Panji, this very strong climber who is holding climbing classes 3 times a week on the only public wall of Jakarta.
You wouldn’t find the crag if you didn’t know it is there, you have to take a tiny track up a hill through the forest and arrive in what we all saw as paradise compared to the madness of Jakarta: birds singing, sun shining, blue sky, clean air, and lots of rock to be climbed. The wall was in the shade all day long, and there even was a nice little breeze the whole day that prevented our European bodies from overheating.
We’d been told the routes on this crag were between 6a and 7a, so Anja and I were surprised to be able to climb any of them, and even to lead some! We can’t really pretend to be well-trained at the moment, but it only shows again that grades are rated pretty severe where we learnt to climb! There’s been some shouting, some falling and some hard-fought victories over 5m to 15m routes. I had only climbed limestone once before, and really enjoyed the variety of big holds, cracks, corners, and slabs.
The other participants were the few usual suspects we see at the Jakarta wall on Sundays/Tuesdays/Thursdays, who are just as desperate as we are to climb stuff, and to get outside of Jakarta! Without any intention to stay away from Indonesians, we naturally started forming a nice little core of Europeans (I am counting Australians in there!). This community feeling motivates us all to climb, and is a great way to build a network of like-minded people in the middle of the Jakarta life. We have already met once or twice to do other things, ranging from drinks and dinners to the cinema, and are starting to plan some trips to the various islands of Indonesia!

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