"By Aeroplane to Pygmyland" Accounts of the 1926 Smithsonian-Dutch Expedition to New Guinea

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Journal of Matthew Stirling
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August 23, 1926 : Head Camp (Lower & Upper) ; Rouffaer River

August 23

This morning the transport with Posthumous continued on its way to the upper camp. Posthumous will remain several days but the canoes are due to return here this evening. This morning Le Roux and I with four Dyaks left upstream to climb a peak which can be seen on the east side of the river. We went upstream and into a little stream which runs into the Rouffaer at the foot of the mountain. It is a beautiful clear "trout" stream running through a bed of huge granite boulders. There appears to be only one kind of fish in its waters, a gaudily colored variety with a red tail, blue mid-section and a yellow head. The mouth of the stream is very deep with {p. 220} crystal clear pools that were a pleasing contrast to the muddy waters we have so long been seeing. We left the canoe at the beginning of the rocks and walked about a mile up the stream clambering over the big boulders. These rocks contain a great deal of crocidolite or "cat[']s eye". At this point we started cutting a trail up a spur of the mountain. We went about 3/4 of the way to the highest peak, and cut the trees along a sharp ridge where we had a fine view over the lake plain, the Van Rees mountains to the north and the Weyland mountains to the West. We returned to camp just before sunset and found that the transport had not returned from the Upper Camp.

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