Hōkūle‘a’s Sister Canoe, Hikianalia Voyages to California
UPDATE: The planned departure of Hikianalia to California on Monday has been postponed until tomorrow (Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018) morning due to potentially strong winds.
Hōkūleʻa’s sister canoe Hikianalia departs from Hawaiʻi today, marking the launch of the Alahula Kai o Maleka California Voyage. The vessel is scheduled to log an estimated 2,500-miles across the Pacific Ocean to California.
The journey continues the Mālama Honua campaign to inspire action toward an environmentally and culturally thriving world.
The wind and solar-powered canoe, which will be captained and navigated by next-generation voyaging leaders, is scheduled to arrive at the coast of Northern California by early September 2018.
The timing of the arrival of the traditional voyaging canoe is planned to coincide with the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco among other California events.
The name of the voyage, Alahula Kai o Maleka, honors the “frequented pathway,” alahula, across the ocean between Hawaiʻi and California, kai o Maleka. Kai o Maleka, literally means “sea of America,” a traditional reference to the Pacific waterway connecting the Hawaiian Islands and the West Coast.
While making the approximately 30-day sail to California on a vessel powered by wind and sun, the crew will demonstrate the important relationship between humanity and the natural environment as the crew navigates their way to California using cues from nature, rather than a GPS or other modern navigational instruments, to guide the way.
As the issue of climate change is at the forefront in the Bay Area as San Francisco hosts the Global Climate Action Summit, Hikianalia and crew will bring a message from Hawaiʻi about the importance of caring for the oceans and Island Earth.
Polynesian Voyaging Society president and pwo navigator Nainoa Thompson has been invited by California Governor Jerry Brown to speak at the Summit’s session focused on “Healthy Oceans.” The Global Climate Action Summit, Sept. 12-14, 2018, will bring together leaders from around the world and endeavors for deeper worldwide commitments and accelerated action from countries that can put the world on track to prevent dangerous climate change.
Additional purposes of the voyage are to connect, learn and share the Mālama Honua message with schools and communities in California; continue developing the next generation of voyaging captains, navigators and crewmembers; and to share the story of Hikianalia, a canoe that blends ancient wisdom and modern solutions to address the environmental and cultural issues of today.
Captained by Lehua Kamalu, the crew is planning to sail Hikianalia through the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a gyre of marine debri particles in the central North Pacific Ocean, to bring attention to the critical need to protect the world’s oceans. The crew will take water samples and track the marine debris in this area.
The canoe will also sail into San Francisco Bay under the Golden Gate Bridge and will be participating in events in the Bay Area throughout the month of September. After engaging with communities in the Bay Area, the canoe and crew will head to San Diego, making stops along the way before returning to Hawaiʻi in December 2018.
Below are the canoe and crew engagements that have been scheduled to date. All events are subject to change, with the latest updates posted at: www.hokulea.com
- Sept. 2-7: Community Engagement at Half Moon Bay
- Sept. 8: San Francisco Arrival Ceremony & Celebration, Aquatic Park Cove
- Sept. 9-12: Docking and Community Engagement, Aquatic Park
- Sept. 15, 4-5:30 p.m.: Presentation by Navigator Nainoa Thompson, Capuchino High School’s Samuel Johnson, Jr. Performing Arts Center in San Bruno. Sponsored by Hawaiʻi Chamber of Commerce of Northern California, Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, and Northern California Outrigger Canoe Association. Ticket information to be announced.
- Late Sept. to Dec. (To be announced): Community engagements along the California coast, between San Francisco and San Diego
Because the West Coast of the United States was not part of the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage, the Polynesian Voyaging Society and crew are looking forward to engaging with the California communities. While Hikanalia is sailing to California, Hōkūleʻa will remain in the Hawaiian Islands to complete the Mahalo, Hawaiʻi Sail.
Hikianalia is the Hawaiian name for the star Spica, which rises together with Hōkūleʻa (Arcturus) in Hawaiʻi. They are sister stars because they break the horizon together at the latitude of the Hawaiian islands.
Launched on September 15, 2012, Hikianalia was designed specifically for the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage. The canoe started as an escort vessel to Hōkūleʻa and is now used as a floating classroom blending ancient wisdom with modern solutions.
Hikianalia specializes in scientific exploration of marine resources and training for the next generation of voyagers.
Values and behavior practiced on the deck of the canoe including how to conserve resources, care for our oceans and fellow crewmembers are shared as a model for how we can live sustainably on islands or anywhere in the world. She combines the latest ecological technology with the heritage of voyaging tradition: each of her hulls contains an electric motor powered by onboard photovoltaic panels that convert sunlight to electric propulsive energy. With a zero carbon footprint, her design supports the “Mālama Honua” (care for Island Earth) mission.