Wednesday 12th November, from the base camp in Kumawa.
The ornithologists and herpetologists, accompanied by Vincent, the “botanist-climber”, are going today to the peaks of the Kumawa mountain range. There is no time to waste because they plan to climb to a height of 1,600 meters. A team of porters is going with them, carrying food and water for the first few days. A second team will bring them additional food.
Today, I am going fishing with Marc and Christophe. They have chosen to go up river. It runs alongside the camp to a waterfall. You have to walk on the river bed because the banks are steep, crumbly, and covered with vegetation. A few basins which are quite deep force us to move from one riverbank to the other and take certain precautions because there is a strong current. It is impossible to avoid the last of the basins before the waterfall. We must swim! But it is worth it as the surroundings are spectacular.
At the foot of the waterfall, and on the way back, Marc fishes with a casting net while Christophe grabs his landing net and slips on his mask. The catch is not great, but still interesting.
In the evening we have news from the Airaha 2. The divers have finally found some submarine canyons, a kind of underwater cliff, that they had been dreaming of since their arrival. So they have decided to stay for a few days in the Karang Derdi area.
(translated by Elsa Havart and Nina Pratlong, L2 SVC–Life & Earth Sciences–UM2, France)