Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia will not be departing Lahaina, Maui today
Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia will not be departing Lahaina, Maui today because the winds in the Alenuihaha Channel have continued to create dangerous conditions for the voyaging canoes and the crew. Forecasts say that there may be a window from Wednesday at the earliest.
Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia have been moored off of Lahaina, Maui, since Thursday, May 13, the morning after departing Honolulu for a training voyage to the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), the area of the Pacific Ocean known as “the doldrums.” The crew is awaiting conditions to improve so the canoes can safely cross the Alenuihaha Channel, between Maui and Hawaiʻi Island. Unlike the Kaiwi Channel, which was quite windy and rough itself, the Alenuihaha is known to pose a larger challenge, and it has been under a small craft advisory with sustained winds of near 30 mph and stronger gusts.
“Hawaiʻi is notorious, world-known by sailors as being a really rough place because of the height of our islands, funneling winds, strength of our currents going against the waves. It’s just a place you have to pay respect to,” said Nainoa Thompson, Pwo navigator and president of the Polynesian Voyaging Society. “Nature will decide the time of departure, not us.”