Mount Trikora History
Puncak Trikora was until 1963, known as Wilhelmina Peak, Puncak meaning Peak. It’s exact height has been of some debate over the years but the accepted height of the summit is 4750m. Perhaps one of the factors in this debate is the fact that it is the third highest peak on the continent of Oceania, only just behind Puncak Jaya (4884m) and Puncak mandala (4760m).
The name Trikora was chosen in 1063 to commemorate a speech by the first president of Indonesia, Kusno “Sukarno” Sosrodihardjo. The speech is known as the Trikora, Tri Komando Rakyat, or "People’s Triple Command". The command being: to defeat the formation of an independent state of West Papua, raise the Indonesian flag in that country, and be ready for mobilization at any time.
The local Dani people who live near Lake Habbema at the foot of the mountain call it Ettiakup.
Trikora sits in the Maoke/Jayawijaya Range which forms part of the mountainous the spine of New Guinea, running East-West across the island.
Despite being in the tropics the peak does occasionally receive a blanket of snow on the summit. At the time of its first recorded ascent in 1913 the upper regions still hosted a permanent ice cap. From around 1936 the ice cap was observed to be in retreat and around 1962 it had disappeared altogether.
The vegetation on an ascent of Trikora ranges as you ascend. We find mountain rain-forest then scrub beech trees, grassy swamp, tree-ferns then alpine scrub to lichen-covered scree then bare rock on the summit.