Our Resident Navigator – Kālepa Baybayan
Chad Kälepa Baybayan holds a Masters in Education degree, is fluent in the Hawaiian language, and is captain and navigator of the Hawaiian deep-sea voyaging canoes Höküle’a, Hawai’iloa, and Höküalaka’i. He has been an active participant in the Polynesian voyaging renaissance since 1975 and has sailed on all the major voyages of Höküle’a throughout the South Pacific, the west coast, and Japan. He was the past Site Director for Honuakai, a community based experiential learning center of the ‘Aha Pünana Leo that utilizes an all Hawaiian speaking crew aboard Höküalaka’i, the newest of a growing fleet of voyaging canoes that are symbolic of the intense interest among local communities in the voyaging arts and the Oceanic tradition of deep-sea navigation. Kālepa currently serves as Navigator in Residence at the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaiʻi, developing wayfinding activities, curriculum, and education materials that engage learners and educators of all ages to explore their universe and realize their full potential. In 2007, Kālepa and four other Hawaiian men were initiated into the Order of Pwo, a three thousand year old society of master deep-sea navigators by their teacher, Master Navigator Mau Piailug on the island of Satawal. This opportunity allowed for the very first time, non-islanders, access into this exclusive and elite hierarchy of Master Navigators.
Got a question about sea navigation? Ask Kālepa a question by leaving a comment below!