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Birth of Kaigani
Reblessing of Malama Ho'oku'i

Kaigani was transformed from tree to canoe with care and years of building experience by master boat builders John Guzwell and Jono Saunders of Port Townsend, WA. Kaigani was named after the forest where the timber was harvested for her creation (the same forest that produced the timber for the Hawai’ian Double-Hulled canoe, Hawai’iloa) located in the Haida Gwaii, Queen Charlotte Islands. Kaigani is a Hawai’ian outrigger canoe specifically designed for the waters of the Salish Sea. She will ultimately be rigged in Polynesian style for Canoe Sailing.

2023  Special Announcement- Renaming of Kaigani and Organizational Name

An Ancestral story- Ho'oponopono with our canoe/Org and the peoples of Tlingit-Haida, more specifically Kaaygaanii Haida- the region of the timber that was used to craft our wa'a formerly named Kaigani.

A full account of this oral story to be retained is in the BLOG section and under construction to document this important healing story.


Program Inspirations & Lineage-


Matt & Melissa Wickey are both part of the International mentor network for The Tracking Project, out of Corrales, New Mexico. We are blessed to be a part of this amazing family and to assist in passing on the wisdom and teachings passed down by friend and teacher, Uncle John Stokes.


A lot of inspiration and curriculum for the Canoe programs comes from these important teachings for our youth while integrating Polynesian canoe traditions and ocean voyaging as passed down as Kuleana (responsibility) earned and given honor to perpetuate the teachings from many inspirations, Kupuna, Uncles/Aunties, & colleagues from across Hawai’i nei. We honor this kuleana and give humbly with grace and open hearts, with one mind, for all Children of the world.

Read more here:

First I honor and give the most amount of Love to my parents, that did not leash me, allowed me to dream, explore, and find my own path. My grandmother, that encouraged my awe and deep connection to the natural world...And my beloved wife and life partner, brought in to weave the rest of the dream-together along with our spirited children.


And finally, so many, so many, and I will likely omit some names, but speak to the so very many Elders, kupuna, ancestors, teachers, family, friends... that have arrived with me in Spirit the strongest helping me carry my sacred kuleana; as we prepare for this continued voyage to honor the Spirit of canoes and their wisdom... Rick Medrick, Dominie Capadonna, Jed Swift, Matthew Mitchell (Prescott College) Stephen Foster & Meredith Little (The School of Lost Borders) Tom Brown Jr (Tracker School) John Seed (Council of All Beings) Bill Plotkin (Animas Valley Institute) The Kailana Program youth & crew of SSV Makani Olu (Marimed Foundation), Damion Sailors, Uncle Sonny Bradley, Uncle Bobby Puakea, Nakoa Prejean, Capt Bonnie Kahapea Tanner, Uncle Mark Stride (Hui Maunawili) Uncle Walter Ritte, Uncles Merv Dudoit, Herb Hoe, Mac Poepeo (Moloka'i) Uncle Calvin Hoe (Hakipu'u) Kalau Ku Mana, Hakipu'u Learning Center, Kahuna Hale Makua (Big Island, HI) Uncle Kaipo Pomaikai, Uncle Butch Helemano (Kahu Waimea Valley) Lee Kravitz & Jerry Vasconcellos (Hakipu'u/Pu'uhonua Kualoa) Uncle Nick Beck (Kau'ai/Holopuni Canoes)  Uncle Kimokeo Kapahulehua (Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Voyaging Society), Donna Kahakui (Kai Makana/Mokauea Loko'ia) Uncle Willis (Waikaloa Loko) Teshima Sensei & Roshi Ken (Chozen-ji Zen dojo) Joe O'Reilly ( Hawaii Instit. of Marine Biology) Nainoa Thompson (Polynesian Voyaging Society), O'ahu Army Natural Resources Program Colleagues, Dr Mimi George (Vaka Taumako Project) Dr. Nancy Maryboy (NASA/Indigenous Education Institute) Dean Washington (Master Canoe builder/Elder Lummi Nation) Dr Sylvia Earle, Samuel Barr (Samish Nation, Canoe Skipper) Jono Saunders & Naim Ferguson (Pacific Northwest Canoe Voyagers) Robert Beck (program Skipper & Friend) Salt Spring Island Wisdom of the Earth School (BC Canada) Frederick Tredree (ancestal great-grandfather) William Naukana (deceased Kupuna, Hawaii/Salt Spring Island, BC) Uncle John Stokes (The Tracking Project) Stephanie Buffum (Friends of the San Juans) Sarah Hanson (On Sacred Ground Land Trust) John Calogero (Outward Bound) Chris Goeltner (master canoe builder) Dr. Hank Wesselman (Shared Wisdom) Captain Karl Kruger...And in the past few years, my new friends from across the World that come together annually under Vision of Phreddie Lane (Lummi Nation) for the Gathering of Eagles Canoe Encampment.


And of course the Spirits of the canoes, Smeye, Xwachxeng, Malama Po'alima, Kaigani (Malama Ho'oku'i) & Hoku'ula and all those paddlers being woven into the story bringing your good minds and hearts. IMUA!



Original Kaigani Pacific Northwest Voyagers:

We are a group of canoe paddlers that live in and around Seattle. In 2011, Kimokeo Kapahulehua from Maui came to visit Seattle and inspired us to begin voyaging in the Pacific Northwest. Recently, when we learned that Kimokeo was to join the Tribal Journeys in the Paddle To Quinault this year, beginning in Makah, we were inspired to organize a voyage to paddle a Hawaiian Canoe from Seattle to Makah, 150 miles away. Other Hawaiian Canoes will be coming to support Kimokeo Kapahulehua and Anela Gutierrez, who are arriving July 25th from Maui with 10 youths from the Native Hawaiian cultural immersion youth program, Na Opio O Maui, to participate in the 2013 Canoe Journey, Paddle to Quinault. They look forward to connecting their children with the children from Makah and Lummi; In a cultural exchange, the children from the Makah and Lummi tribes will be able to learn to paddle in a Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe, and children from Hawaii can learn to pull in a First Nation Tribal Canoe.


This was the first time a Hawai'ian Outrigger Canoe has followed this route. We greatly respect the native culture and tried our best to follow protocols along the way. We divided the voyage into three 50 mile parts we called journeys. In each journey we would have 7-8 legs of about 5-10 miles each (maps linked below) where we would alternate crews.


The first journey was from Lake Washington to Port Townsend on June 15th (recap here ),
Journey 2 from Port Townsend to Crescent Beach on July 13th, and
Journey 3 was from Crescent to Neah Bay on July 14th.


Journeys 2 and 3 were back to back and were the biggest challenge, not only for the distance, but because of the unpredictable weather in the Strait, and the many 'unknowns" along the way, including landing locations and rugged coastlines. We had an escort on the first journey to Port Townsend, but our support boat was not able to join us on Journey 2, so we continued without. On Journey 3, Polly McCarty from the Makah Canoe Society helped us find an escort, escort capt Dwayne provided excellent support and route guidance on the 3rd day.


We are honored and humbled by the experience to paddle along this route and experience the many unique places along the Strait, along the way there where many people supporting us and helping us to get to our destination, from folks on the beach to fishermen making way for our canoe as we paddled by. I think everyone can relate to the feeling of voyaging and discovery, life is a journey in itself.


There was also help from above, a special energy that helped us along and when we thought we could not continue at certain points where there were logistical obstacles or strong tides, winds, and fog. To each of us, that support could mean something different, but it was undeniable and powerful. Upon arrival in Neah Bay, we were greeted by the Makah people who allowed us permission to land on their shores and showed us overwhelming aloha and hospitality. We would like to thank from the bottom of our hearts, the people of Makah, the Makah Canoe Society and Polly McCarty.


Here are maps of the routes and land locations:

Journey 1:


Journey 2: map:


Journey 3:


The voyage began as a way to discover and learn, what we discovered was far more then what we could have imagined. The song in this slideshow is Spirit Bird by Xavier Rudd. A song about heritage, native strugles, culture, mother earth, father ocean, life and death, the purpose of our existence, to practice cultures and share aloha. Mahalo na Kupuna for allowing us to pass, mahalo ke Akua for guidance and life. Mahalo ke aina. Mahalo ke kai. Mahalo eagle. Mahalo Makah Nation.

Mahalo nui loa to our Inspirations, Mentors, Sponsors, 'Ohana, & Partners!






























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