Horizon 202 Panoramic Adventure: Tarusan-Siberut

There was a dark time in my life when I had to stitch 2-3 frames to make a panoramic photo.  Photo-stitching is just like masturbation, you feel like you’re having sex but it’s not. Combining two different photos to a single panoramic frame isn’t the same as capturing a full panoramic frame. Occasional masturbation is acceptable, but you just can’t masturbate your whole life, can you?

I waited patiently almost a year to get my hand on a Horizon 202, a Russian swing-lens panoramic camera, patrolling every local selling forum. At last the camera popped up in one of the forums and it took only a couple of seconds for me to contact the seller and made a deal. I tested it with one roll of Fuji Superia 200 and the result was very promising. Finally, the Horizon 202 was ready for some real adventure and my gut told me this camera would be awesome.

I brought this Russian beauty to my 10-day straight trip in West Sumatra and Jambi early June 2014, loaded the camera exclusively with color films because I was very impressed with the lens’ sharpness and color render in the initial test roll. Despite there wasn’t any decent color processing lab in Jakarta, I took the films to my regular lab because I had no choice. Surprisingly, the results were amazing, especially with ISO 100 films.

The Beginning

The adventure began at Puncak Mandeh, a little-known place in Tarusan, about 50 KM from Padang. A hidden gem of West Sumatra, its view beat the shit out of the famous Puncak Tele in North Sumatra. Oh you think I’m kidding? Watch these:

The Root Bridge (Jembatan akar) is an interesting tourist attraction in the sub-district Bayang Utara, 65 KM from Padang. The bridge is practically the combination of tangled roots from two separated big trees and reinforced by steel wire for safety reason. Grey sky and constant rain forced me to capture the bridge in one specific spot. The West Sumatra trip had just started and I wasn’t gonna risk my cameras.

Siberut is the largest island of the Mentawai Islands on West Sumatra. I spent three days in this beautiful, mystical island with 6 other travel buddies living among the family of a local tribe inside an Uma, a traditional house of Mentawai people. Below the uma was a shelter for pigs.  It was memorable nights when we had to sleep on the wooden floor exactly above the pigs’ den. O dear foul smell, I remember thou.

Inside Sumber Rezeki Baru, a wooden motor boat, heading for Siberut (Top) ; Uma, a traditional Mentawai house (Bottom)




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