This book features interviews with ten master navigators who trained under Mau Piailug (1932–2010), the legendary teacher of traditional, non-instrument wayfinding methods for open-ocean voyaging across the Pacific. They were given the status of master navigator by Mau through the Pwo ceremony, and went on to become an integral part of the renaissance of knowledge and traditions around voyaging.
The ten navigators include three from Aotearoa New Zealand: Hec Busby, Piripi Evans, and Jack Thatcher; two from the Cook Islands: Peia Patai (Pe’ae Tua’ati) and Teuatakiri Tearutua Arthur (Tua) Pittman; and five from Hawai‘i: Nainoa Thompson, Chad Kalepa Baybayan, Shorty Bertelmann, Bruce Blankenfeld, and Chad ‘Onohi Paishon. Their stories are intertwined with the movement that proved that the exploration and settlement of the eastern Pacific was deliberate, and one of the greatest feats of navigation in human history.
Each of the profiles includes a specific aspect of the contemporary voyaging story, and describes how these remarkable men learned to navigate voyaging canoes across thousands of miles of open ocean. Fascinating interviews uncover the blend of traditional knowledge, science, passion, stamina, and strength needed to guide a voyaging canoe.