PNG from the Air

Posted: November 30, 2009 in Uncategorized

When we were in PNG recently, I had the chance to get up in the chopper ( sorry Mark ) to go flying around Rabaul. Rabaul was once voted as one of the prettiest harbours in the world and you can see how that may have been the case, but not today… it is covered in ash from an active volcano. The volcano was erupting the day we were flying around and you can see the smoke bellowing out of it in the photos. To fly around this area so close to it was amazing….. After leaving this area and only about a 5 minute flight were these beautiful island, from memory called The Duke of York Islands. To go from one extreme to the other in such a short distance was amazing. Well worth the money getting up there to check it out ! ! !

  1. truenorthmark says:

    Great shot Rod…it really shows the affect the Volcano has had on the area.

    Well done!



  2. Rod Thomas says:

    Cheers Mark…. it was a pretty special place I reckon and so glad I did it….

  3. mate the top one is awesome, just wish the top of the mountain wasn’t cut off. That would be a awesome place to photograph from the ground too. Well done. The processing is very clean and crisp. Has 5D2 written all over it.

  4. Danny Scott says:

    Hey Rod, the first photo is incredible, is that all ash or have you mute the colours on the ground. I agree with Fletch, would have been cool if you got the top of the mountain, but its still a really awsome photo.

  5. Rod Thomas says:

    Thanks guys for the comments. CF and Danny, I never even noticed the mountain thing at 11pm last night.. I was so bloody tired. Ill have a look and see if I got anything else. CF, for someone like you to make remarks on my processing means alot, thanks mate… I wish your brother was as kind as you, all he kept saying to me on the trip was ” Im on top “

  6. Brent Pearson says:

    Love this shot Rob

    Looks like it would have been a cool place to shoot from the ground as well.

  7. That first shot is especially great, wauv what an awesome location mate. Also on the ground there seems to be so many interesting compositions. Did you find one where the mountain is not cut off?

  8. Luke Austin says:

    I would absolutely love to shoot that volcano and the surrounding area. Volcano’s is on my to shoot list.

  9. muzz says:

    I was starting to think you and Mark were using some sort of Velvia filter in your PP but I’m now guessing it is really this vivid up there. I wish I had a bigger monitor as that first photo demands really close inspection of all the detail it has captured. It’s a spectacular shot.

  10. George says:

    They look so awesome on my new 27 incher 😉

  11. Mike Fletcher says:

    Where the F#@k has the top of the mountain gone????? Would you do that to a brides head. Show some respect man…….

  12. me says:

    check the new post you f*cking homo… its there man

  13. Mike Fletcher says:

    Me a Homo? Your the one wearing your undies around the boat. Snigger, Snigger 🙂

  14. Art Williams says:

    Rod great snap of dusty Rab. i walked there couple years after big blow. Almost cired as I sa w my mates house, top of his roof only, which was only few yards towards old airport from kaivuna. Beautiful Mango Avenue a memory. Yet found families living among dust, no water and top of mature coconuts a mere six foot above the dust level.
    yet Gov decided to try and make Kokopo and Tokua centres despite latter airstrip having to close when wind is ion wrong direction. Should have gone to volcano free and mountain free Kavieng next door on New Ireland.
    Anyway Thanks for beaut snaps

  15. Rod Thomas says:


    I would love to walk there one day mate, and if I ever get back to PNG, that is the first thign I will do. Thaks for the insight mate into what must have been, and continutes to be, a very hard time for the locals

  16. MatthewSaul says:

    Hey Rod,
    Been going through some of your older posts. Love all the shots from PNG!. A TN trip is up there on the wish list for sure!
    must have been pretty mind blowing flying over that volcano and village

    • rodthomas says:

      Thanks Matt,
      PNG on board True North was pretty bloody good. I suggest you sell a kidney or lung or something on the black market and get back on there for longer than one day…

      Thanks again for checking out my blog mate

  17. Graham Weston says:

    I used to go to Rabaul in the late 80’s and early 90’s, we would travel over from Bougainville via Nissan for weekend getaways. Magic place and magic people. It has changed so much since 94, but still love the place. I still have my Pepsi fun run Tshirt from 92, when we used some of the japanese tunnels in tunnel hill as part of the course. I have not been there since 98, but would love to get back there one day.

  18. Rae Atkinson says:

    Hi Rod – loved your photo of Rabaul although kinda poignant for me as well.
    I nursed at Nonga Base Hospital in the late 60’s and have some vivid memories of the beauty of the area. Cannot imagine Mango Avenue covered with so much debris, and wonder what happened to the hospital? Has anyone seen it? I have an old black and white photo of the volcano smoking away on the day I flew in for the first time with heart in mouth, as a twenty four year old. Cheers Rae.

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