Rafts at Sea
Pp. 256-299 (44)
Robert G. Bednarik
Furnished with and emboldened by an increasing understanding of the
technology of seagoing rafts, the First Mariners project examines the question of how
early hominins crossed sea barriers successfully to colonize Wallacean islands. Both the
straits separating Lombok from Sumbawa and Sumbawa from Komodo/Flores are
subjected to such attention. Although both experiments succeed ultimately, they also
confirm that due to the transverse currents regulating all sea narrows it is impossible to
traverse them without adequate propelling power to overcome these strong currents.
The chapter concludes with a theoretical discussion of the variables determining the
conditions under which Pleistocene sea crossings were accomplished.
Sape Strait, Sumbawa, Komodo, Rangki Papa, Ales Strait, Lombok,
Lombok raft, shaman, maritime experiments, bamboo rafts.
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