Canoeing has been a part of Hawaii’s history and culture since ancient times; and in my opinion, there is truly no better way to experience Hawaii than from the seat of an outrigger canoe. I had the privilege of getting my oars wet for the first time when I, along with a team of my coworkers, recently met at Rainbow Bay Marina in Honolulu. The Rainbow Bay Marina is a Morale, Wefare, and Recreation (MWR) facility for military members and their familes stationed on the island of Oahu. The marina, located just outside the Arizona Memorial on Pearl Harbor, offers a variety of boats and other activities for fun times on the water.
These canoes weigh roughly 900 pounds each!
I think one of the most challenging things about outrigger canoes is just getting them launched into the water. We were lucky that we had a pretty large paddling crew to all lend a hand. These canoes weigh roughly 900 pounds each!
Our paddling instructor, who was also our Na Ho’okele (steerer) kept our team operating like a well-oiled machine… Well she tried her best, considering what it was that she had to work with!
The key to outrigger canoe paddling is that every stroke be made in perfect unison. Yeah, that wasn’t always the situation inside of our canoe.
A beautiful sunrise over Pearl Harbor
We won the race easily… seeing how there was nobody else in the water.
We probably would have paddled a whole lot better but that guy in the black shirt actually forgot to grab an oar.
…not to mention the guy in the lead seat on the port side was snapping selfies the entire time.
All in all we did pretty well and most would say I rowed the best… regardless if I paid them to say that.
There’s that guy in the black shirt again. We are all finished rowing now and he’s still looking for an oar.
I think we’re all about ready for the big leagues now!
Outrigger canoe paddling is not only fun, it is a fantastic way to get some quality exercise with family and friends. If you like water sports and enjoy working as part of a team, than this is definitely a sport that I would highly recommend!