The Kon-Tiki Museum
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Kon-Tiki - short history

Kon-Tiki - short history

Kon-Tiki - short history

Kon-Tiki - in finnish

Log book from 1947

Log book Kon-Tiki

29.04. 1947


Towing went remarkably well: seas were fairly high, but no splashing reached deck or hut, only bow and stern logs.

9.30 Cable broke 20 yards in front of Kon-Tiki. Bengt , Erik and Thor went over to Guardian Rio in fairly rough seas using dingy with great ease. Rope connected again, while Kon-Tiki in heavy swells was smashed up under stern of Guardian Rio.

10.00 Towing continued, and successful radioschedule was established with radio telephone to Guardian Rio.

12.00 Towing ended in agreement with request by Kon-Tiki. Bengt, Erik and Thor went over to Guardian Rio in dingy and took farewell while obtaining the position 11” 43” s and 78” 10” w.

12.25 Kon-Tiki hoists sail as Guardian Rio turns south and disappears behind the horizon. Light southwest wind and moderate rugged ocean swells at irregular intervals. Estimated sailing speed 1 mile an hour.

12.30 Radio telegraphy contact with Peruvian Navy Coast Station, full strength both ways. Asked Gerd via Norwegian Consul General in Lima to cable start and position to N.A.N.A., New York.

13.30 Whale observed which passed us going east on port side, sending cascades of water into the air. A couple of flying fished also observed. During afternoon wind takes form of strong and steady S E trade, digging up rough seas. Kon-Tiki rides seas and swells remarkably easily without taking water apart from on submerged steering platform asterm which is washed over in high and short seas only. 4 centre boards have been used since start and function perfectly well, as wind drift always follows main direction of raft.

Towards night strong S E winds is digging up irregular seas more and more, and it is necessary to lash steering oar and fasten cross-piece to handle for turning it into position. From 22.00 double watch all through night was necessary in the high and rugged seas. Knut is seasick and could not take turn. 5 remaining men slept 3 hours and steered 2 all through night. Standing ship order:

Lonely watchmen (Note: on watch alone) are obliged to have rope around waist which is tied to raft. Kon-Tiki takes the most unexpected and quick succession of high seas with grace. No water or splashing in hut or on main deck. Air is getting drier and milder than previous night.

23.45: 5 ship lights, north bound observed on starboard by Erik and Bengt.


The balsa raft Kon-Tiki was build in Callao, Peru. Read more about the Kon-Tiki expedition and its background.