Once is Enough

Smeeton, Miles

Published by International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press, 2003
ISBN 10: 0071414312 / ISBN 13: 9780071414319
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The Sailor's Classics library introduces a new generation of readers to the best books ever written about small boats under sail

When the 46-foot Tzu Hang sailed from Australia into the vast Southern Ocean in December 1956, her crew of three couldn't know what terror awaited them.

From the Back Cover:

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

When Tzu Hang, a 46-foot ketch, set sail from Melbourne, Australia, in December 1956 bound for England, Miles and Beryl Smeeton and their friend John Guzzwell had little concept of the challenges or 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, in the icy 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. Despite a broken collarbone, she managed to swim to the wreckage of masts and rigging in the water 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 the boat was close to sinking. Working beyond exhaustion, the crew emptied the water bucket by bucket, salvaged what they could, built a new doghouse, fashioned a jury rig, and five weeks later sailed into Arauco Bay on the Chilean coast.

After ten months of repair work in a Chilean navy yard, Miles and Beryl Smeeton (without John Guzzwell) sailed again toward Cape Horn and again were capsized, dismasted, and nearly sunk by a rogue wave. Once more, they survived the disaster and sailed 2,000 miles to Valparaiso, Chile.

When it was first published in 1959, Once Is Enough electrified the sailing world. But what keeps it fresh and captivating is not just Smeeton's vivid re-creation of the sea's fury. His eloquent descriptions of ordinary life at sea make Once Is Enough timeless reading for sailors and armchair adventurers alike.

"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

"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

"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

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Once is Enough
Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press
Publication Date: 2003
Book Condition: Good
Edition: 1st Edition.

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Book Description McGraw-Hill Education - Europe, United States, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Sailor s Classics library introduces a new generation of readers to the best books ever written about small boats under sail When the 46-foot Tzu Hang sailed from Australia into the vast Southern Ocean in December 1956, her crew of three couldn t know what terror awaited them. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780071414319

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