Crew Profile: Christopher James Kuʻuhaku Blake

PVS Member Since

HOMETOWN: Kapālama, Oʻahu
PRIMARY DUTY: Kapālama, Oʻahu
WORLDWIDE VOYAGE LEGS SAILED: Doldrums Sail May 2021: Hōkūleʻa
Christopher James Kuʻuhaku Blake is from Kapālama, Oʻahu but currently resides in Kapahulu, Oʻahu. His first sail on Hōkūleʻa was in 2012 with a group of educators from Kamehameha schools who were looking for the connections of voyaging and navigation in their learning spaces. He was able to bring groups of kumu and haumana to connect to the Mālama Honua World Wide Voyage in Aotearoa in 2014 and 2015, and the Galapagos Islands in 2017. In 2016, Chris was able to join on leg 18 of the WWV when Hōkūleʻa returned to America in Florida and traveled across Lake Okeechobee and to Cape Canavral and NASA to honor Lacy Veach, the astronaut from Hawaiʻi who helped to inspire the World Wide Voyage.

In the words of Chris, Hōkūleʻa is a symbol of how our kūpuna purposely voyaged across Moananuiākea and skillfully navigated along the ancient searoads that connected our oceanic homeland. She is the magnet that brings together like minded individuals from all over the world that share values and are working to make our world a better place for everyone. She is the waʻa that allows for the skills of kilo and hoʻokele moana to be practiced and passed on for generations to come. Hōkūleʻa reflects and directs the spotlight to illuminate the people, the ʻāina and the communities that believe the change is possible and we are the ones to make it happen.

Chris’ hope is that voyaging is a way to strengthen connections to ʻike kūpuna. It is a way to inspire the next generation to understand the brilliance of our kūpuna and to utilize the ʻike that was salted and preserved for us to use and to synthesize it with technology and information from today in order to shape our future. Voyaging is a way to connect to the language of nature and to become immersed in our environment to allow us to better understand and to protect what is important to us, to our ʻāina, to our communities and to our lāhui.

When Chris is not out at sea, he craves being immersed in the elements of nature for extended periods of time. Those are things that are just unable to be replicated unless you are out there doing it. Feeling the rhythm of the waʻa, the creaking of her lashings, the sound of wind as it blows across the sails are the things that you miss the most. Being able to see the night skies and the multitudes of stars that you can see without the light pollution is amazing. The thing I miss the most is the connections that we make with our crew and how we can depend upon each other to take care and to ensure we are safe at all times.

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