Miles Smeeton Once Is Enough

ISBN 13: 9780007535101

Once Is Enough

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9780007535101: Once Is Enough

This timeless classic is an exciting true story of survival against all odds.`There was a sudden sickening sense of disaster. I felt a great lurch and heel, and a thunder of sound filled my ears. I was conscious, in a terrified moment, of being driven into the front and side of my bunk with tremendous force. At the same time there was a tearing cracking sound, as if Tzu Hang was being ripped apart, and water burst solidly, raging into the cabin. There was darkness, black boards, and I fought wildly to get out, thinking Tzu Hang had already gone. Then suddenly I was standing again, waist deep in water, and floorboards and cushions, mattresses and books were sloshing in wild confusion round me.'Miles Smeeton and his wife Beryl sailed their 46-ft Bermuda ketch, Tzu Hang, in the wild seas of Cape Horn, following the tracks of the old sailing clippers through the world's most notorious waters. This is an exciting true story of survival against all odds, but it is also a thoughtful book which provides hard-learned lessons for other intrepid sailors.As Nevil Shute writes in his foreword: `It has been left to Miles Smeeton to tell us in clear and simple language just where the limits of safety lie.'

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From the Back Cover:

"Unique among books of maritime adventure."--New York Times Book Review

"There was a sudden sickening sense of disaster. I felt a great lurch and heel, and a thunder of sound filled my ears. I was conscious, in a terrified moment, of being driven into the front and side of my bunk with tremendous force. At the same time there was a tearing, cracking sound, as if Tzu Hang was being ripped apart, and water burst solidly, raging into the cabin."

When Tzu Hang, a 46-foot ketch, set sail from Melbourne in December 1956 bound for England, Miles and Beryl Smeeton, their Siamese cat, Pwe, and their friend, John Guzzwell, had little concept of the challenges or the terrors that awaited them. At that time very few small sailboats had successfully rounded Cape Horn, and none had sailed as far south as Tzu Hang--just north of the Antarctic iceberg limit.

Six weeks later, on the night of February 12, in the icy, angry seas several hundred miles west of Cape Horn, Tzu Hang was caught from astern by a huge wave that somersaulted her. Beryl Smeeton, who had been alone at the tiller, was thrown thirty yards into the sea. Her lifeline broken, and suffering a scalp wound and a broken collarbone, she managed to swim to the wreckage of the mast and rigging in the water and pull herself close to the boat where Miles and John could heave her on board. Tzu Hang was a shambles: the tiller, rudder, doghouse, anchor, compass, and dinghies had all been ripped away; the masts had broken off level with the deck, and a tangled mass of wire shrouds, the masts, and the booms spread over the deck and into the water; and Tzu Hang was half-filled with water and close to sinking. The pumps were clogged with debris, so the laborious process of removing water from Tzu Hang--twelve hours of near-constant bailing--had to be done bucket by bucket. Working beyond exhaustion, the crew salvaged what they could, built a new doghouse and masts, fashioned a jury rig, and five weeks later sailed into Arauco Bay on the Chilean coast.

After ten months of making repairs to Tzu Hang in a Chilean navy yard, Miles and Beryl Smeeton (with Pwe but without John Guzzwell) sailed again toward Cape Horn and once again were capsized, dismasted, and nearly sunk by a rogue wave. Again, they survived the disaster and sailed 2,000 miles to Valparaiso, Chile.

One of the most gripping sea stories of all time, Once Is Enough recounts the adventures of Tzu Hang's crew. When it was first published in 1959, this tale of struggle and determination electrified the sailing world. What keeps it fresh and captivating is not just Smeeton's vivid re-creation of the sea's fury; his eloquent descriptions of life at sea and his colorful observations of the many people and places encountered during their journey make Once Is Enough timeless reading for sailors and armchair adventurers alike.

"Once Is Enough--the story of a catastrophe twice over--was Miles Smeeton's first book. It is also his best. He never wrote again with quite such compelling candor, allowing the reader to be the fourth crew member aboard Tzu Hang on the most grueling and disaster-ridden voyage in the boat's long history. . . . The strangest and most memorable thing about Once Is Enough is that it's not a heroic tale of survival, but--of all things--an idyll."--from the introduction by Jonathan Raban

"Brigadier Smeeton's saga is the very essence of authenticity. Its message is clear and simple: Beware the sea in anger, for no small boat can conquer it, however expertly sailed."--New York Times Book Review

"It is the struggle of these three indomitable sailors for survival and their extraordinary resource . . . that makes their taut journal unique among books of maritime adventure. . . . Tzu Hang and her crew add up not only to survival but to a tale full of sound and fury told by an intrepid but eminently sane survivor."--Times (London) Literary Supplement

They are the first people ever to return alive to tell the story of a boat being somersaulted. . . . And they certainly make fascinating company for a reader with his eyes on the heights of human endeavor."--Sunday Times

"Well and forthrightly written . . . full of real adventure and suspense. . . . One reading is not enough."--Libary Journal

The Sailor's Classics recognizes and celebrates the best books ever written about life aboard small boats at sea:

Alone through the Roaring Forties, Vito Dumas
40,000 Miles in a Canoe, John C. Voss
Gipsy Moth Circles the World, Francis Chichester
The Saga of Cimba, Richard Maury
The Strange Last Voyage of Donald Crowhurst, Nicholas Tomalin and Ron Hall

About the Author:

Born in England in 1906, Miles Smeeton joined the army and fought in World War II before setting sail on the Bermudan ketch `Tzu Hang' with his wife in 1956. During his lifetime Miles Smeeton wrote nine books, and together with his wife founded the Cochrane Ecological Institute in 1972 and received numerous awards for their lifetime sailing achievements. He died in 1988.

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2014. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. This timeless classic is an exciting true story of survival against all odds. There was a sudden sickening sense of disaster. I felt a great lurch and heel, and a thunder of sound filled my ears. I was conscious, in a terrified moment, of being driven into the front and side of my bunk with tremendous force. At the same time there was a tearing cracking sound, as if Tzu Hang was being ripped apart, and water burst solidly, raging into the cabin. There was darkness, black boards, and I fought wildly to get out, thinking Tzu Hang had already gone. Then suddenly I was standing again, waist deep in water, and floorboards and cushions, mattresses and books were sloshing in wild confusion round me. Miles Smeeton and his wife Beryl sailed their 46-ft Bermuda ketch, Tzu Hang, in the wild seas of Cape Horn, following the tracks of the old sailing clippers through the world s most notorious waters. This is an exciting true story of survival against all odds, but it is also a thoughtful book which provides hard-learned lessons for other intrepid sailors.As Nevil Shute writes in his foreword: It has been left to Miles Smeeton to tell us in clear and simple language just where the limits of safety lie. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780007535101

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2014. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. This timeless classic is an exciting true story of survival against all odds.`There was a sudden sickening sense of disaster. I felt a great lurch and heel, and a thunder of sound filled my ears. I was conscious, in a terrified moment, of being driven into the front and side of my bunk with tremendous force. At the same time there was a tearing cracking sound, as if Tzu Hang was being ripped apart, and water burst solidly, raging into the cabin. There was darkness, black boards, and I fought wildly to get out, thinking Tzu Hang had already gone. Then suddenly I was standing again, waist deep in water, and floorboards and cushions, mattresses and books were sloshing in wild confusion round me. Miles Smeeton and his wife Beryl sailed their 46-ft Bermuda ketch, Tzu Hang, in the wild seas of Cape Horn, following the tracks of the old sailing clippers through the world s most notorious waters. This is an exciting true story of survival against all odds, but it is also a thoughtful book which provides hard-learned lessons for other intrepid sailors.As Nevil Shute writes in his foreword: `It has been left to Miles Smeeton to tell us in clear and simple language just where the limits of safety lie. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780007535101

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