Carstensz Pyramid 11/24/08 dispatch
Greetings from Indonesia! This is Mark writing in from our hotel in Bali where the team all arrived over the last 24 hours, except for Pablo; who will be arriving from Singapore tomorrow morning.
Expedition training poolside
I arrived on schedule on the 22nd and spent the first couple of days working out details with our local outfitter and buying food for the trip. We have a massive pile of comfort foods, tasty snacks and items that we won’t be able to buy on our main shopping trip when we reach Timika. It is hot and extremely humid here, with spells of torrential rain, but that doesn’t stop dozens of avid surfers from enjoying the great waves along Kuta beach right behind the hotel.
I had a bit of sun yesterday and relaxed by the pool while reading over Heinrich Harrer’s account of his successful first ascent of Carstensz Pyramid back in 1962. Our overland approach will be similar in nature to his and we are very excited about the upcoming adventure. Everyone is a bit weary from their long flights, but we went out for a nice dinner of traditional Indonesian food at a local landmark called Made’s Warung. Joe and Bill entertained us at dinner with their accounts of earlier attempts on this peak and they both are fired up to take care of unfinished business to the summit. Our impromptu orientation meeting over dinner went well and I think we have a very cohesive group.
The Pool in Padma
Tomorrow we will travel to the town of Ubud to experience more Balinese culture and take in the sights. It will be a mellow day so we can make final preparations for our midnight departure to the airport tomorrow night. We are scheduled for a 2:00 a.m. flight to Timika with Garuda airlines on Wednesday. Following that, we are hoping to catch our charter flight in a twin otter up to Sugapa village where our trek and the real adventure begins. Everyone is healthy, happy and excited to get things underway. I will try to send some shots from our excursion in Ubud tomorrow.