PORT ANGELES — The sweet scent of cedar wafts past Harry Moon as he draws a sharp carving tool across the base of what will soon be a ceremonial oceangoing canoe.
In a week, Moon and Lower Elwha Klallam carvers Al Charles Jr. and Darrell Charles have transformed the log into the skeleton of a Coast Salish-style vessel that will join other tribal canoes in an annual journey along the Washington coast to the Quinault Reservation at Taholah.
The journey begins in early August, but already the canoe is nearing completion with the possibility of finishing a second canoe before Lower Elwha paddlers take to the water.
“We’re way ahead of schedule,” Moon, 42, said as he smoothed the canoe bottom with the tool called an adz. “We’re about a week ahead of where we figured we’d be.”
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