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The hard ascent from Ijen lake of a miner who carry about 90kg of sulfur in the middle of clouds of foul smelling fumes.
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West of Gunung Merapi is the Ijen volcano, which has a one-kilometer-wide turquoise-colored acid crater lake. The lake is the site of a labor-intensive sulfur mining operation, in which sulfur-laden baskets are carried by hand from the crater floor.

Sulfur Mining at Ijen
An active vent at the edge of the lake is a source of elemental sulfur, and supports a mining operation. Escaping volcanic gasses are channeled through a network of ceramic pipes, resulting in condensation of molten sulfur. The sulfur, which is deep red in color when molten, pours slowly from the ends of these pipes and pools on the ground, turning bright yellow as it cools. The cooled material is broken into large pieces and carried out in baskets by the miners. Typical loads range from 70–100 kilograms, and must be carried to the crater rim approximately 200 meters above before being carried several kilometers down the mountain. Most miners make this journey twice a day. The miners are paid by a nearby sugar refinery by the weight of sulfur transported (600Rupees per kg). The miners often use insufficient protection while working around the volcano and are susceptible to numerous respiratory complaints.
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Additional Photos by Luca Belis (Mistral) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 527 W: 74 N: 2119] (15402)
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