Focusing on Tahiti

Focusing on Tahiti

The ultimate goal is to teach us how are we going to feel and how to deal with that exhaustion…and still make safe decisions for your crew during the voyage.

“Whenever you go on a sail, each person is always given a different kuleana. Our trip to Tahiti is going to be a classroom. We’re going to have a navigational challenge, and our kuleana is not only finding where we’re going, but working as a team,” said apprentice navigator Haunani Kane.

“Most of these younger ones coming up haven’t been on a deep-sea, other than going to Nihoa. Anywhere you are, it’s kind of nerve-wrecking, and you feel pressure that a lot of people, now that everyone knows we’re going around the world, a lot of people are watching what Hōkūle’a is doing to Tahiti,” said experienced navigator Kaʻiulani Murphy.

Although this is a lot of kuleana, the apprentice navigators are relieved to know that they are not alone. The apprentice navigators are splitting the responsibility of navigating to Tahiti among themselves.

“The idea for this leg is for Nainoa and Bruce to pass on as much as they can on this road to Tahiti. So we have 7 apprentice navigators on Hōkūleʻa and 3 on Hikianalia. Weʻll be up for two days really trying to practice what itʻs like to navigate. So the first two days is Haunani and Jason, and then Austin Kino and myself come up day 3 and 4. Then Linda and Lehua will be next. And then actually Lehuaʻs sister [Noelani] will be on the next round with Lehua. The sisters will be navigating,” said Jenna Ishii, another apprentice navigator on Hōkūleʻa.

“Nainoa’s not asking any one of us to navigate the whole thirty days. So we’ll still be able to feel that exhaustion, but we’ll know that there’s light at the end of tunnel. It’s not squarely on us the entire time from the beginning, but the ultimate goal is to teach us how are we going to feel and how to deal with that exhaustion and those feelings and still make safe decisions for your crew during the voyage,” said apprentice navigator Jason Patterson.

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