- Title: Workers in Bolivia prepare reed boat for Pacific journey to Australia
- Date: 9th November 2016
- Summary: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA (NOVEMBER 6, 2016) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF VIRACOCHA III SHIP AND BOLIVIAN FLAG VARIOUS OF AYMARA WORKERS MAKING FINAL PREPARATIONS ON THE BOAT GENERAL VIEW OF SHIP CLOSE-UP OF CRANE WORKER GENERAL VIEW OF SHIP ONLOOKERS WATCHING THE SHIP MACHINE WORKER GENERAL VIEW OF SHIP (SOUNDBITE) (English) BIOLOGIST AND EXPLORER, PHIL BUCK, SAYING: "Behind me is Viracocha III. It's an 18-metre (59-foot) boat we are going to bring to Arica, Chile." MACHINES LIFTING BOAT (SOUNDBITE) (English) BIOLOGIST AND EXPLORER, PHIL BUCK, SAYING: "It's a six month trip and we are going to set sail at the end of February. The idea is to stop at four islands along the way including Tahiti, Fiji and New Caledonia and the eventual destination is Sydney, Australia". VARIOUS OF WORKERS LIFTING THE BOATS WITH CRANES
- Embargoed: 24th November 2016 16:01
- Keywords: Bolivia Aymara ship reed boat indigenous
- Location: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- City: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA
- Country: Bolivia
- Topics: Arts/Culture/Entertainment
- Reuters ID: LVA00157Q7JGJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Final preparations were put to a boat made only of reeds and crafted by indigenous Bolivians on Sunday (November 6), before it sets sail across the Pacific from South America to Australia to prove that ancient mariners were capable of making the journey.
The ship was constructed in the Bolivian capital, La Paz, by indigenous Aymara who live on Lake Titicaca high in the Andes and who have used similar craft for centuries.
Phil Buck, a 51-year-old explorer from the United States, already has led two similar expeditions and will captain the 'Viracocha III' set to depart from northern Chile in February on an expected six-month journey.
"Behind me is Viracocha III. It's an 18-metre (59-foot) boat we are going to bring to Arica, Chile," said Buck.
In a bid to show that it was possible for Aymara or other native South Americans to have made the trip in pre-Columbian times, Buck said the international crew will use bamboo water containers and eat quinoa, potatoes and fish from the ocean.
Unlike the sailors of the past, though, they will send daily updates to social media. Maritime law stipulates that they will also have to carry modern GPS and navigation systems.
Their first stop-off is scheduled to be the remote Polynesian island of Mangareva, after around 60 days at sea.
After Mangareva, the 18-meter (59-ft.) long 'Viracocha III' will head to Tahiti, Fiji, and then Sydney, a journey of some 10,000 nautical miles.
"It's a six month trip and we are going to set sail at the end of February. The idea is to stop at four islands along the way including Tahiti, Fiji and New Caledonia and the eventual destination is Sydney, Australia," said Buck.
Buck's expeditions are inspired by the 1947 trip of Norwegian explorer and writer Thor Heyerdahl, who crossed the Pacific in the 'Kon-Tiki' balsa-reed raft.
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