By Levi Cunding
Bad weather has hampered efforts to reach debris in remote eastern Indonesian mountains believed to be from a plane that crashed carrying 54 people and almost half a million dollars in cash.
More than 250 rescuers had tried to battle through dense forest to reach what is thought to be the wreckage of the Trigana Air plane, which disappeared on Sunday during a short flight in Papua province.
The ATR 42-300 twin-turboprop plane was carrying 49 passengers and five crew on the journey from Papua's capital Jayapura to Oksibil, a remote settlement in the mountains to the south.
Also on the plane was 6.5 billion rupiah ($A637,100) in cash, which were social assistance funds being transported for distribution to poor families, according to the head of the Jayapura post office. The cash was being carried by four post office officials in bags.
The plane disappeared about 10 minutes before reaching its destination, soon after the crew requested permission to start descending in heavy cloud to land.
A plane on Monday spotted debris engulfed in smoke in the mountains near Oksibil and search teams, including soldiers and police, set off in the early hours to reach the site, which is at an altitude of 2500 metres.
But thick fog, which reduced visibility to one metre, and rain hindered the bid to reach the crash site, the head of Indonesia's search and rescue agency Bambang Soelistyo said.
Efforts to reach the location, about 15 kilometres from Oksibil, were called off for the day at 5.30pm and would resume on Tuesday, he added.
A photo of the suspected site showed an area that appeared to be fire-blackened and scattered with debris in thick forest, and Soelistyo said he was "98 per cent" certain it was the location of the crash.
He said the chance of any survivors was "very slim". All those on the plane were believed to be Indonesians.
Australia has offered to help with the investigation of the plane crash.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop made the offer to her Indonesian counterpart and officials are in discussions on the matter.
Relatives of passengers were becoming increasingly frustrated at the lack of hard news.
Some shouted "We want confirmation!" and threw a table at a crisis centre set up by Trigana Air at Jayapura airport.
"My family and I have been gathered here for hours. We want to know the fate of my brother, Kepi Deal, who was on board the plane," Rifan Wea, one of about 100 relatives at the airport, told AFP.
"We want to know whether he is dead or alive."
Last year's AirAsia crash was one of two major air accidents that Indonesia has suffered in the past year alone.
The second incident happened in June when an Indonesian military plane crashed into a residential neighbourhood in the city of Medan, exploding in a fireball and killing 142 people.