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Moai is Upright
by Liesl Clark
May 6, 1998

Moai being raised on May 5th (still from video)
May 5th Raising

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Photo of Rapa Nui men raising the Moai with levers Hours passed as the moai was inched very slowly and carefully upright. The 9.5-ton experimental statue with topknot was delicately maneuvered onto its platform in a gradual process with levers sticking into the surrounding stones like needles in a pin cushion. By 5:00 pm the replica moai was raised fully upright with a final groan of effort from the team of Rapa Nui men whose strength and sweat brought about the success of this experiment. An instant later, the rain came down with a driving force that washed the entire workforce and onlooking experts into their cars and back to town.

Photo of double rainbow over raised Moai And then the sun came out, the afternoon was silent, and not a soul was in sight but a lone moai, a herd of horses, and a giant double rainbow over Tongariki arcing into the surging waves of the Pacific.

Tomorrow will be a day of assessing whether we have enough wood and rope to try another transport experiment.

Lessons Learned (May 11)
A New Way to Move a Moai (May 9)
Moai is Upright (May 6)
Moai Nearly Raised (May 5)
A Tourist Attraction (May 3)
The Secret of the Sledge (May 2)
Moai Ready to be Raised (May 1)
The Moai is Moved (April 30)
15-Ton Moai Removed from Mold (April 27)
Moai Platform Complete (April 26)
Moai Mold is Filled (April 24)
Moai Mold Ready for Concrete (April 23)
Statue Mold En Route (April 22)
The Team Arrives (April 20)
Arrival on Rapa Nui (April 17)

Photos: Liesl Clark

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