Pacu Jawi: Traditional Cow Racing in West Sumatra

Pacu Jawi: Traditional Cow Racing in West Sumatra

Grip tightened, throttle open, lowered helmet cutting through black diesel. I was the last in the three-motorbike convoy that left the Harau Valley at high speed. I kept up for maybe an hour or so before the mad tentacles of Sumatran traffic separated us. It came in...
Climbing Gunung Marapi in West Sumatra

Climbing Gunung Marapi in West Sumatra

Charcoal clouds swirled across an onyx moonscape of mud atop Gunung Marapi in West Sumatra. Hanging around didn’t seem like a good idea. Very few things get me going at 04:30. Sunrises definitely aren’t one of them. I made that mistake once in Maui. Flip-flopped and...
Climbing Gunung Sibayak Without a Guide

Climbing Gunung Sibayak Without a Guide

In August 2011, I was climbing Gunung Sibayak without a guide (Sumatra, Indonesia). The eerie landscape of the caldera and risky scramble down were part of an adventure that I’ll never forget. As an added bonus, I was kept awake all night before the climb by...