Latch On to an Outrigger Canoe

A Little Bit of HistoryBig Island

Designated as the state’s offi cial team sport, OUTRIGGER CANOE RACING draws hundreds of paddlers to clubs throughout the Hawaiian Islands. However, it is more than a popular activity—it’s a culturally signifi cant link to the legendary seafaring traditions of Hawai‘i.

Hawai‘i’s fi rst settlers arrived aboard DOUBLE-HULLED SAILING CANOES that they paddled across 2,000 miles of uncharted ocean using only the stars and fl ight patterns of birds to guide them. They found the Hawaiian Islands more than 1,000 years before European explorers arrived in 1778.

Typically, canoes were used for interisland travel, fi shing and sport, to transport warriors into battle and for exploratory voyages. Today, they’re primarily used for fun.

A modern-day outrigger is powered by six paddlers in a 45-foot fi berglass, single- or double-hulled canoe, which features an

—a pontoon attached to one side of the hull for added stability. Many hotels off er lessons, or seek out a company to experience this thrilling ride.

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