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Australasia, Southwest Pacific, Peaks in the Southwest Pacific

Peaks in the Southwest Pacific. In 1977 I climbed 41 peaks in 15 countries in the Pacific. After walking across New Guinea on the 94- kilometer Kokoda Trail, I headed for the highlands, where I soloed three peaks: Mount Hagen (3778 meters or 12,398 feet) from the lumber mill at Tomba, Giluwe (4368 meters or 14,331 feet) from Tombul and the Kargoba High Altitude Experiment Station, and Mount Wilhelm (4510 meters or 14,797 feet), the highest peak in Papua, from Kegsugl. The former took one day and the latter two, two days each. In Indonesia, on Bali and Java, I climbed seven volcanic peaks, again all solo: Agung (3142 meters or 10,308 feet) in a day from Besakih Temple, Arjuno (3340 meters or 10,958 feet) in a long day on a good trail from Tretes, Lawu (3265 meters or 10,712 feet) on a pilgrim trail from Sarangan, Merbabu (3142 meters or 10,308 feet) and Merapi (2919 meters or 9577 feet) both from the saddle between them, and Semeru (3677 meters or 12,064 feet), the highest peak on Java, from Peonojiwo and Supit Orang. The latter is a very active volcano which was erupting about once every hour; I was literally chased from the summit, dodging rocks. There was no trail to the summit; I followed lava flows which cut through the rain-forest. On Taiwan I climbed Hsuih Shan (3884 meters or 12,743 feet) in two days from the east, Lam Whoa Shan (3740 meters or 12,371 feet), Chida Shan from the Hohua Shan ski resort and Yu Shan (3997 meters or 13,114 feet), the highest on Taiwan.

Michael R. Kelsey