Indo Tour 3

Click the photo for slideshow (without captions)

Heading home after Tour 3....transiting through picturesque Pattimura Airport on Ambon
0550 local time and already a monster CB heading our way
Indonesian flavour combos never cease to amaze : green beans baked into a sweet bun
Sugapa MEDEVAC patient being handed over to ambulance crews in Nabire
Me and my new Batik Formal Shirt posing with our Engineers Marsel and Melli
Batik and Sunset
Crew night out at the Moon Beach Resort north of Nabire
Moon Beach Resort pier
Beetle leaving the party early at the Moon Beach Resort
Entering the Freeway - wind flowing around the northern boundary range
Early morning Freeway - cloudpour
Ilaga WABL - unloading a personal record-to-date 277 kg pig
Taking advantage of an unusually clear and calm day - the altimeter indicates 12,500 ft as we fly along the northern plateau bordering the Puncak Jaya 
Passing over the plateau north of Puncak Jaya at 12,500 ft above sea level
Puncak Jaya Indonesia's highest mountain at 16,024 ft above sea level with Carstensz Glacier just visible
Carstensz Glacier visible east of the Puncak Jaya with the northern plateau in the foreground
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef - predator starfish inching in for the kill
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Chief of Security for Highland Airports - employed to keep people off the runways
A gift from one of our colleagues returning from holiday : Javanese 'Blangkon' headdress which we honoured with a traditional dance
Unloading emergency building supplies in Sugapa ...urgently required after the recent unrest
Not my best pic, but not bad for through the window from 5 miles away : AMA Pilatus Porter passing low over the jungle below us in the Freeway
Eastbound at 11,500 ft through the Beoga Pass enroute to Ilaga. The Pass directly below us lies at 9300 ft and the ridge on the wingtip reaches 13,000+ and extends for 30 NM
Unloading a 180 kg pig at Ilaga WABL
CSI:Papua - the spot on the Ilaga apron where a woman walked into a TwinOtter prop two weeks previously
To prevent further tragedies, a crowd control fence has been installed
Rushhour at Ilaga WABL
AMA PAC750 PK-RCE rolling on Runway 07
PAC750 climbing away from Ilaga WABL - runway length 603 m and threshold elevation 7500 ft
Previously mentioned 'Church of the Guiding Light' seen from 53 NM out
Visit to the 'Church of the Guiding Light' started with a wrong turn and getting stuck
The 'Church of the Guiding Light', actually called Ecclesia in Kali Merah village
The current church/villlage hall in Kali Merah with a curious congregation. The villagers have been solely funding the building of the new church hall themselves, starting in 2009 
Work in progress on the new church/village hall of Kali Merah
New church/village hall under construction in Kali Merah
SusiAir Pilatus PC6 Porter on the ground at Hitadipa
Durian fruit - enthusiastically welcomed when in season for its flavour and mild alcoholic/hallucinogenic qualities
Bilogai Tutup = Sugapa's airstrip is closed due to rioting (difficult to see, but there is a lot of debris on the runway)
Unusual sight of gold mine helicopters PK-USA and PK-USS both under cover at the fire station for maintenance
We will be going into rough airstrips in the new year - gravel deflectors
New Year's Eve : Swiss-Serge and French-Claude as we crossed the runway to the Company fireworks party
Dutch-Remco and French-Claude on Nabire's runway heading for the Company New Year's party
Christmas [ Palm ] Tree
Our Company fireworks street party
GloStix from Glasgow are always popular
Wheelbarrow BBQ with Rapster Chef and his fish
Enjoying the fireworks while sheltering from the rain - which reduced the fire hazard to the town. The lens is not foggy - that's smoke.
The Freeway, Papua
Highland jungle in the clouds at 7000 ft elevation
Another Christmas Load
On the apron at Nabire WABI waiting for the rains to clear
Christmas Eve sunset
Christmas Eve sunset
The white dot above the ridge at 11 O'clock is the Church of the Guiding Light, visible from 40+ NM out
The yellow dot is helicopter PK-USS heading for the Bayabiru gold mine
GoPro looking down - Nabire town
Ruslan's first marshalling - close enough for a lollipop prize
GoPro looking down - Siriwo gold mine
Unloading a very large, very smelly dog
Nabire - our hotel 'Mahavira 2' is the L shaped yellow building. 'Mahavira 1' is the L shaped tin roof in front.
AMA Pilatus PC6 Porter on the ground at Bilai
Pogapa - adorned with the wrecks of two Caravans
CB with cap
Landslide - scale not obvious but that is a drop of at least 2000 ft
GoPro looking straight down - Papua jungle
GoPro looking down - Bumi river gold mines
GoPro looking down - Papua jungle
GoPro attached to the tailcone, looking down - posing with Ramli, our man in Bilogai
Freeway waterfall - seen from 3 NM and falling at least 300 ft
Freeway waterfall seen from 2 NM distance - a huge volume of water dropping at least 800 ft
Waterfall in the Freeway
Loading construction materials
Early morning insect on the apron
First thing in the morning the aircraft is always covered with insects
Early morning insect
Early morning insect - this one got under my seat, was released and then nearly got eaten by a passing bird
Unloading pipes at Sugapa
Unloading pipes at Sugapa
A special lunch prepared by Engineer Melli's Mum
Our aircraft seen in a cloudy Freeway at 10,500 ft
Checking the load
Papua - landslides old and new
Entering the Freeway
Bugalaga
To give a sense of scale - that dot is the AMA Porter going towards Bugalaga
Loading 700 chickens (and, unwittingly, 1000s of ants)
Escaped chicken and its owner in flight
A few of the 1000s of ants which ended up crawling all over the aircraft and pilot
Entering the Freeway heading East with the coast in the distance
Passing another aircraft in the Freeway - it gives a sense of the unbelievable size of the mountains
The airport staff were otherwise engaged....so we used our propwash to remove this FOD from the centre of the runway
Passing Mil-8 ER-MGX in the Freeway at 8500 ft
Finally some pics of our aircraft in flight : Asian One Air C208B PK-LTF in the Freeway
Asian One Air C208B PK-LTF in the Freeway at 10,500 ft
Asian One Air C208B PK-LTF in the Freeway
Asian One Air C208B PK-LTF in the Freeway at 8500 ft
Missionary John Cutts from Pogapa www.villageheartbeat.org who has served Papua for 60 years and featured on the TV Series "Worst Place to be a Pilot"
Papua - bridge under construction
Fresh lemur anyone ?
Our Engineer Marsel in a rice paddy getting us a sample
What rice really looks like - the black and white varieties
Rushhour at WABI Nabire
The jungle - some of these trees are 150 ft tall
Missionary Aviation Fellowship MAF Grand Caravan in the Freeway 
MAF Grand Caravan PK-MAE in the Freeway
MAF C208B PK-MAE
Cloud pouring off the jungle plateau east of Nabire
Cloud pouring westwards at the entrance to the Freeway
A welcoming 'bagan' fishing platform under which two Whale sharks were feeding
Whale shark wikipedia
Whale shark - the 'small' one 4.5 metres
Whale shark
Curious Whale shark gliding in to have a close look at me
What a guy looks like while he get's run over by a Whale shark
Whale shark - no enlargement...they come that close !
Whale shark
Whale shark
Curious, gentle Whale shark
Whale shark
Whale shark
Around midday, as the surface water warmed, they just glided away into the depths
Approaching Pulau Nuburi
Pulau Nuburi
Pulau Pepaya seen from Nuburi
Pulau Nuburi - a 150 metre circle of paradise
Pulau Nuburi - fish congregating in the surf
Pulau Nuburi coral reef
Pulau Nuburi reef
Pulau Nuburi reef
Pulau Nuburi reef
Departing Pulau Nuburi
Associated Mission Aviation Pilatus PC6 Porter in the Freeway
Sling load being lifted to a remote site
Nabire, Papua, Indonesia
FOD on the strip at Bilogai. The fate of the owner remains unknown.
Fuzzy pic of a beautiful bug who got up my trouser leg. Normally this would result in a girlie scream, a leap, leg shaking and a summary execution - but the offender was too stunning for that.
The Freeway eastbound in the early morning - the peaks in the distance reach 13,300 ft
Hand luggage - Papua style
Shorts finals for RWY09 at Bilogai - 600 m long, 6960 ft elevation & 23 degrees
Applying Reverse Thrust on landing at Bilogai WABV
A day with extensive virga
Snack vendor outside our cargo office (name of heated rice/palm sugar/coconut snack TBA)
A fuzzy pic of cloud pouring over a 12,200 ft massif 30 NM away
Prison Break - fugitives recaptured. The one on the left made it all the way across the apron.
Catching up with AMA's Pilatus Porter PK-RCY in the Freeway
Associated Mission Aviation Pilatus PC6 Porter
Crime prevention - Papua style
An unusually clear day in the Freeway, looking South from overhead Bilai
The southern wall of the Freeway
Gold mine along the Derewo River
Nabire WABI - loading building supplies
The Freeway
Turning towards the 7400' KeyPoint (Blue-Red-Blue buildings) for Finals at Bilogai WABV
Bilogai WABV - unloading
Sugapa town
The Freeway - landslides and the Derewo River
Freeway - skirting clouds
Leaving the Freeway Westbound with the coast on the horizon
Staring descent into Nabire WABI - where the Ulawa and Siriwo Rivers meet
East of Nabire - gold mining along the Bumi River
Jungle plateau East of Nabire WABI
Approaching Nabire WABI - the coast and airport are immediately behind the 1700' ridge ahead
Joining Finals 34 at Nabire WABI
Nabire WABI
Boat trip to the uninhabited islands North-west of Nabire
Uninhabited islands 1 hour boatride NW of Nabire
Approaching Palau Babi
Pulau Babi
Pulau Babi
Pulau Babi with Pulau Ahe in the background
Pulau Babi
Pulau Ahe - with all that remains of a hotel once built on the island
Pulau Ahe - clamshells
Pulau Ahe - WW2 aircraft wreckage
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Pulau Ahe reef
Nabire
Nabire WABI - Engineer Mellie cleaning up the Apron
Our first passenger - we rolled 10 m before he let go. Anyone know what it is ?
GoPro Underwater - Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
GoPro Underwater - Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua


Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua

Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua
Coral Reef off Nusi Beach, Papua