Category: Indonesia

Photos from the Foya Mountains

The Foya mountains is one of the remotest mountain ranges in the world. Although I have always dreamt of going there, I had actually never seen good photos. This site on insects of Papua has a bit more information on the area, including photos and a location map. This site on the CI expedition to the Foya Mountains has some more information.

New species in Foya mountains

A team of Conservation International biologists returned to the Foya Mountains (map) in northern Papua (Indonesia) this year. This pristine rain forest, considered one of the last great unexplored areas of the world, once again yielded some great finds, including a giant rat, and display behaviour of a black sicklebill bird of paradise. I saw these gorgeous birds in the Wandamen range near Wasior in northwestern Papua. These iridescent black birds with their very long tails are truly stunning.

My friend Will and I had been wanting to go to the Foyas ever since we came to Papua, but the area is just too remote, unless oyu are with a well-organized expedition. It’s no wonder that it took Bruce Beehler 25 years to get there.

However, looking at the Google map of Papua, I was shocked at the number of new roads in the area around the Foyas. In the early ninetees, there were none. I even saw entirely new transmigration areas along the north coast. Rather depressing.

Great New Guinea photos

Like me, my good friend Will Betz never had much time to scan his New Guinea slides. He’s finally started, and posted some of them on his New Guinea pages. Will spent many a month on both the Indonesian and PNG side of the island. His description of the island sums up my feeling perfectly. The trekking is among the toughest in the world, but its nature is truly stunning, and the people are fantastic. The island remains one of my favourite areas in the world, especially the mountains of West Papua. We both have many more slides to scan and post.

We met in West Papua (then Irian Jaya) in the early ninetees, and did some epic mountain treks together. Closer to home we hiked the West Coast Trail, and two years ago the Stein divide.

West Papua

I recently uploaded some pictures of West Papua (formerly Irian Jaya), Indonesia’s remotest and least-visited island. Still largely covered in pristine rainforest and outer-worldly cloudforests up in the mountains, it is one of the world’s last remaining truly wild places. Here mountains rise to 5,000m, with a glacier covering the tallest peak. The Pegunungan Zaag (Sawtooth mountains) in the east are virtually impenetrable. Stunning birds of paradise, bowerbirds and tree kangaroos make their home on the island.