Photo by Anonymous
|Best months for climbing:||Feb, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov|
|Year first climbed:||1962|
|First successful climber(s):||Heinrich Harrer, with Temple, Kippaz and Huizenga|
|Nearest major airport:||Nabire|
Puncak Jaya (also known as Carstensz Pyramid) is the highest mountain in the Pacific Basin, and is typically considered the highest peak of the seventh continent (Australia/Oceania) for climbers attempting the Seven Summits. However, there is some dispute of its status as the seventh summit since it is located in the western half of the island of New Guinea, in the Indonesian province of Papua, and Indonesia is an Asian country. This is a minority viewpoint based on politics rather than geophysics.
Puncak Jaya is indisputably the highest point between the Himalayas and the Andes.
It is located in what is variously called the Sudirman Range or the Dugunduguoo, in the western central highlands of Papua, just fifty miles from the island's southern shore. Much of this range is characterized by easy terrace, surmounted by severe rock walls.
While Puncak Jaya’s peak is free of glaciers, there are several on its slopes, including the Carstensz Glacier, the Meren Glacier, and Northwall Firn. Being equatorial, there is little variation in the mean temperature during the year (around 0.5°C) and the glaciers fluctuate on seasonal basis only slightly. Evidence from satellite imagery demonstrates that most of the glaciers atop the mountain are retreating rapidly and some have disappeared altogether the last twenty years.