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The Honolulu Advertiser
Updated at 4:18 p.m., Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Finally, Hokulea sets sail on 1,000-mile journey to Palmyra Atoll

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Hokulea crew member Eli Witt checked the rigging of the canoe today in preparation for departure to Palmyra Atoll this afternoon. Witt will handle communications during the voyage.

RICHARD AMBO | The Honolulu Advertiser

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After 10 days of delays, the voyaging canoe Hokulea was set to embark this afternoon on its 1,000-mile sail to Palmyra Atoll.

Hokulea was expected to sail between 4 and 5.

The canoe had endured delay after delay because of combinations of cloudy, rainy weather and small-craft warnings.

Since Hokulea's navigators sail without instruments, clear skies are essential in setting the canoe's initial course.

The Polynesian Voyaging Society says the month-long sail will train young navigators, captains and crew members as well as educators and scientists who will explore the open ocean and coral reefs surrounding the remote atoll.