Hōkūleʻa Heads To Rapa Nui

Feb 13, 2017

Credit Nāʻālehu Anthony / Oiwi TV

The Hōkūleʻa is on its way to the island of Rapa Nui, or Easter Island.

It’s one of the more difficult journeys of the entire voyage. The crew has been hard at work preparing for the upcoming trip that will take roughly two weeks. We caught up with Nāʻālehu Anthony before they left the Galapagos.

Nāʻālehu: "So we’re getting ready to leave the Galapagos, and set our course out to this island called Española Island. And that will be the jumping off point for the roughly 1900 mile journey down to Rapa Nui.

We’re in constant mode of preparation for the journey. There’s a ton of different things that we have to do in these last minute checks to make sure that we are ready. Everything from making sure that the calculation of water on board is correct to buying last-minute fruits and vegetables as we get ready to depart.

We’re on board Hōkūleʻa right now getting ready to scrub the hulls so that we can have clean hulls going into Rapa Nui and we don’t take any kind of little creatures with us. And there’s a ton of checklists. So there’s a Watch Captain’s checklist, there’s a Captain’s checklist all making sure the vessel is prepared and has all the proper equipment on board getting ready to go.

This is actually one of the hardest trips navigationally of the whole worldwide voyage. The target is really small, I think it’s about 7 by 14 miles and it’s isolated. Rapa Nui is the most isolated landmass on the planet. So the navigation team has been holed up in a couple of hotel rooms working very hard to make sure that they have all of the different metrics and facts and figures memorized as best they can. So that they can preserve both their speed as well as their direction to make sure they end up in or around the Rapa Nui waters to begin the search in about 14 to 18 days."

Follow the Hōkūleʻa through Google Maps