'03 - Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Daily Reports

'99 - Rapanui

'95 - Nukuhiva

Daily Reports

'95 - Northwest and West Coast Tour

'92 - Ra`iatea & Rarotonga

Hawaii to Tahiti

Tahiti to Ra`iatea

Ra`iatea to Rarotonga

The Voyage home


'85 - '87 - Voyage of Rediscovery Ancient voyaging routes

'80 - Hawaii to Tahiti & back

'76 - Hawaii to Tahiti & back

Hawaiian Voyaging Terms















Hawaii to Tahiti & back

The Voyage 1980

"Culturally, the 1976 voyage was ... a great success. Hawaiians and Tahitians regarded the voyage as tangible proof of the nautical abilities of their ancestors, and saw the canoe as a symbol of their heritage as an exploring, pioneering people. However, despite the fact that the canoe had been designed, captained and largely crewed by Hawaiians, many Hawaiians felt that a crucial element had been missing in the venture: a Hawaiian had not navigated the canoe along the seaway between Hawai'i and Tahiti as their ancestors had once done". Nainoa Thompson, a young Hawaiian on the crew of the 1976 voyage home, set out to learn how to navigate as his ancestors had. In 1980, he successfully guided Hokule'a to Tahiti and back. "In replicating Mau's feat of navigating the canoe to Tahiti, and then guiding it back to Hawai'i, Nainoa was able to validate and extend the results of the 1976 navigational experiment" (Finney).

More on the 1980 voyage to Tahiti and back can be found in Will Kyselka's "Ocean in Mind" (Honolulu: University of Hawai'i, 1987) and in David Lewis's "We, the Navigators: The Ancient Art of Landfinding in the Pacific," 2nd Edition (Honolulu: Univ. of Hawai'i Press, 1994, pp. 312-341).

CREW MEMBERS: HAWAI`I-TAHITI, 1980: Nainoa Thompson-Navigator. Pat Aiu, Chad Baybayan, Shorty Bertelmann, Harry Ho, Sam Ka`ai, Buddy McGuire, Marion Lyman-Mersereau, Mau Piailug, Gordon Pi`ianai`a, Steve Somsen, Jo-Anne Sterling. Leon Sterling, Tava Taupu

CREW MEMBERS: TAHITI-HAWAI`I, 1980: Nainoa Thompson-Navigator, Snake Ah Hee, Wedemeyer Au, Chad Baybayan, Bruce Blankenfeld, John Kruse, Kainoa Lee, Kimo Lyman, Gordon Pi`ianai`a, Mau Piailug, Steve Somsen, Leon Sterling, Michael Tongg, Nathan Wong