Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Polynesian navigation

HOKULEA RETURNS TO HONOLULU....According to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the Hokulea was originally built in the 1970s as a means of reviving interest in traditional Polynesian methods of navigation, which rely on the sun, stars and cloud movement for guidance.
Per the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s website, at the time of its initial voyage, there were no Polynesian navigators left in the world, so the Hokulea had to bring on Mau Piailug, a navigator from a small island called Satawal, in Micronesia, to help guide the Hokulea from Hawaii to Tahiti in 1976. 
“Without [Piailug], our voyaging would never have taken place,” the Hokulea’s website states. “Mau was the only traditional navigator who was willing and able to reach beyond his culture to ours.”
Tragedy struck the Hokulea in 1978 when it set out for Tahiti again. This time, the boat capsized during a storm off the coast of the Hawaiian island of Molokai. In an effort to swim for help, Eddie Aikau — a legendary Hawaiian waterman — attempted to paddle to shore. The rest of the crew was rescued, but Aikau was never seen again.
This most recent journey, however, was far more joyous. And, fittingly, when the Hokulea was preparing to come into port on Saturday, it was greeted by a rainbow.

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