Lots of happy memories here of the fabulous Highlands Highway. My tribute to the wonderfully warm and hospitable people we met along the way. The photographer for most of the images was the late Denis Williams.
There was one golden rule in the seventies for visitors travelling the highway, and it still holds true today: make sure you have a local person or guide with you who speaks fluent PNG Pidgin English and knows the local customs and potential pitfalls.
Sharing a joke with some school children in the Markham Valley, 1974.
Happy couple at Goroka, 1975.
Gathering grass for a new roof. c.1975.
Singsing artefacts for sale, Mt Hagen 1975.
Winning smile, Eastern Highlands, Papua New Guinea 1973.
A widow from the Oro province wearing necklaces made from Coix lacryma seeds commonly called Job’s Tears. Thanks to Justus and Maureen Houthuesen-Hulshoff for their additional information.
How to be a bad mother in PNG. or What your child gets up to when you are viewfinder fixated.
Solemn young man wearing a Luluai medallion given to him by an Australian kiap. Worn with great pride 40 years ago.
Mother and child waiting for a PMV (public motor vehicle) on the side of the Highlands Hwy near Goroka, c.1975.
Soft morning light in the Western Highlands, Papua New Guinea 1974.
Well met on the HIghway.
View from the top of the pass c.1975-76.
Enjoying all the attention from a group of school children.
Passing another vehicle on the Highlands Highway, PNG, c.1975.
Stuck in the mud with roadworks for a new section of the highway 1973.
One way to stop the traffic on the Highlands Hwy. PNG c1975. What a magnificent surprise.
Southern Highlands women filling holes for the new road to Mendi, c.1975.
Stopping the traffic near Goroka, Papua New Guinea.
Road workers going home after a hard day’s work, Highlands Hwy PNG c1973.
Accident on a flooded causeway, Highlands Hwy, Papua New Guinea, 1973.
Pensive moment at a Goroka market, c.1975.
Policeman on duty at the 1974 Mt Hagen Show, with a front-row view of the passing parade.
Now that’s a cabbage! Mountain gardener walking to the nearest market, Eastern Highlands 1973.
Asaro Mudman headpiece being adjusted, 1974.
A couple of village elders fooling around for the camera 1973-74.
Mt Hagen Show 1974.
Mountain gardening near Goroka, with Highlands Hwy in background. Papua New Guinea 1975.
A Luluai, a kiap-appointed village headman. Mt Hagen 1975. A maker of superb sing sing artifacts and a couple of them are still in my collection.
Busy local market in the Eastern Highlands, Papua New Guinea 1973.
A cute litle blondie from the highlands, Papua New Guinea.
Checking finances at an Eastern Highlands Market, Papua New Guinea c.1975.
A bit tongue-in-cheek as these two police officers pose for a photo,
Police patrol, PNG Highlands Hwy.
Markham Valley at the foot of the Eastern Highlands, 1973.
The narrow white ribbon of the highlands Highway.
View over the valleys, Highlands Hwy, 1973.
Peaceful Chimbu village,1973.
Large and impressive roadside village 1975.
Tourists visiting a market, Eastern Highlands Papua New Guinea 1975.
Building a new house and getting the intricate vine binding just right.
Wild flowers for sale to tourists on the highway in 1973.
Denis Williams at the Southern Highlands border, c.1974.
These lads are posing for a photo while their dads work on the Highlands Hwy, c.1973-74.
The most photographed Cassowary in the world. Highlands Hwy 1973.
This fellow was spruiking outside a market along the highway.
Busy market scene Eastern Highlands.
A new timber causeway after flooding, Highlands Hwy 1973.
Construction workers building a new bridge for the highway 1975.
Young boy with gorgeous Papua New Guinea wildflowers, Highlands Hwy 1973.
A Bird of Paradise at the Baiyer River reserve and sanctuary, 1975.
Baiyer River Pigeon, Baiyer River reserve and sanctuary, Western Highlands, Papua New Guinea, 1975.
Expats at the Highland Show in the early 1970s.
Village along the PNG Highlands Hwy 1975.