Hōkūleʻa Update | November 12, 2015
Aloha, mai kākou, this is Nainoa Thompson and we’re on Hōkūleʻa on the last African leg of this voyage to Cape Town. Cape Town will be our eighth port of this leg and we’ve got a little bit over 40 miles to sail. That’s like about less than 2% of the distance that we’ve sailed so far since we sailed from Mauritius.
We’ve been at sea traveling from Mauritius now for 39 days. It’s been an extraordinary voyage, and a challenging one with adversity. I just want to say that this crew has done a magnificent job to get it here and we did what we said we were going to do. So we’re more than half way around the world and every inch that we move now we’re heading back home.
What you see in the background is a place called the Cape of Good Hope–the farthest western tip of South Africa and originally called the Cape of Storms.
This big bay behind us called False bay. The reason they called it false bay was because early mariners thought that the bay was a good sheltered area to anchor. This wasn’t correct because the place has very strong winds–sometimes up to 100km per hour. We had no reason to go to False Bay and for safety reasons we shouldn’t have gone, but we made a decision because of the extraordinary work of many people who are there.
The people in this area are doing exceptional things to protect the world’s oceans. We met with those who are a part of Sustainable Seas, and those who are doing extraordinary documentation of this very rich ecological system.
This is a place where we aloha our great friend, mentor and teacher–the inspirational Dr. Silvia Earle. At this place, she has helped to create one of Earth’s great Hope Spots. We were here to capture stories of not just hope, but of people taking extraordinary action to protect the oceans, and in doing so, protect Earth.
We dove in the kelp forest; yesterday we were taken by Craig Foster on a tour of an amazing ecological system–some of the richest nutrient-rich oceans in the world. Craig is a documenter and it was an honor and privilege to be with him.
Now it’s time for us to focus on this crew and on ending this leg of the voyage. It’s been a hard one. Hōkūleʻa is in great shape–she’s in great condition, but she had to work hard on this one. If you look out on the ocean right now, even though there’s no wind, the ocean never stops moving here. There are these constant waves from all directions, big, steep and they are constantly, constantly working the canoe and the crew.
And so this is a voyage-leg that we need to end, but I don’t think this crew will ever forget it. It’s been a privilege and honor to be along the coast of Africa. And I thank you so much. Aloha.