Te Lapa

In addition to their vast knowledge of asterisms, wind, waves, and currents, sailors of the Duff and Reef Island groups make use of a unique phenomenon that has barely been documented, let alone witnessed by outside researchers. 

Canoe Sailing in the Solomon Islands

You haven’t seen me on the river since the end of August. The reason is that I’ve been on Taumako, a remote island in the Solomon Islands, learning about voyaging canoes, their construction, operation, and systems of non-instrument navigation. I’ve just returned to Ohio for a few months before going back to Taumako to continue …

Cause for Celebration: Open House in Taumako

from Pacific Paddler Magazine, June 2002 – by Meph Wyeth Dateline: Duff Islands, Temoto Province, eastern Solomon Islands. Sunday 24 March was a red letter day for the people of Taumako, Duff Islands: The official opening of the new community Hale Vaka (canoe house).

The Art and Craft of a Polynesian Voyaging Canoe

from Pacific Arts Magazine, May 2000 by Heu’ionalani Meph Wyeth On the tiny island of Taumako (fig. 1) in the Solomon Islands’ eastern province of Temotu live some 500 Polynesians who may be the only people in the Pacific still capable of building and sailing traditional voyaging canoes in completely traditional ways.

Authentic Polynesian Voyaging Canoe Sails Again

In August, 1998, the Te Puke named Vaka Taumako made its first voyage. For the first time in over forty years, a Polynesian voyaging canoe, a vaka, was built using completely traditional methods and materials. For the first time since 1963 a Te Puke voyaged on a traditional route.

Return of the Te Puke

from Solomons, inflight magazine of Solomon Airlines, June 1998, Issue #25, page 34 by Meph Wyeth Thank God for your safe arrival here… Tears streamed as we sang the traditional song of welcome. It was September 12, 1997, the day everyone had been waiting for. It had been a long wait.