Hōkūleʻa Completes Panama Canal Transit, Returns to Pacific Waters
After two days of transit through the Panama Canal, iconic voyaging canoe Hōkūleʻa reached the Panama city of Balboa today at 2:54 p.m. EST. The canoe went through three sets of locks on the man-made waterway and returned to Pacific waters for the first time in nearly two years.
Because Hōkūleʻa has no engines, and because of the turbulence and currents within the canal, the canoe was safely towed by a powerful work vessel – DWS Linda – through the canal.
Crewmembers moored the double-hulled canoe at Balboa Yacht Club and will remain docked in Balboa for about seven days. From there, Hōkūleʻa will depart for the Galapagos Islands, a sail that is expected to take approximately 10 days.
While in Balboa, Hōkūleʻa’s crew will engage with several indigenous organizations and leaders of the Panamanian community. Crewmembers will also use their time in Balboa to provision the vessel for her upcoming sail to the Galapagos Islands and then Rapa Nui, ensuring she is in exceptional condition for the remainder of her voyage home to the Hawaiian Islands.
The vessel has been at sea since 2013, and is scheduled to make her return to Hawaii in June of 2017 to conclude the worldwide voyage.