A true sailing adventure from New Zealand to England.          (See a  book sample here)  

On May 5th, 1994, at 9.30 am on a chilly, sunlit day, Ebony, a 36ft Roberts Spray, left the safety of Lyttleton Harbour in New Zealand, to venture into the unknown, where nothing would be predictable. 


The voyage plan was to follow the famous trade wind route, sailing from New Zealand to England.

All too soon, they found themselves battling their way to Sydney, Australia. Caught in a ruthless storm with no contact with the outside world, they were truly alone. All the romantic notions of the ultimate cruising life disappeared into oblivion.

Step aboard Ebony and take an adventure, an epic 15-month voyage. Experience the day-to-day passionate tale, packed with intrigue, and at times suspense. Experience the delights of the lands visited and learn more about the world of international sailing. This was a life changing adventure, with a dramatic, unexpected, ending.



Caution to the Wind Book "A true sailing adventure"

SKU: 364215375135191
  • Table of Contents

    Map of the route travelled

    01. A Dream or Reality

    02. Finding the Right Yacht

    03. Oodles of Preparations

    04. May 5th D-Day

    05. Set Sail for Sydney

    06. Port Taranaki & Mike’s Decision

    07. Thoughts of Flying to Brisbane

    08. The Storm

    09. Hasty Getaway

    10. Change of Course to Nouméa

    11. The Arrival

    12. The Delights of Day-Sailing up the East Coast of Australia

    13. Darwin

    14. The Plague

    15. Ashmore Reef & Contact with Ocean Reaper

    16. Christmas Island

    17. Sri Lanka

    18. A Pleasant Sojourn by Train

    19. The Question of India

    20. Paradise at the Maldives

    21. Oman or Mukalla ‘Yemen’?

    22. Pakistani Friends

    23. Fun Times at Mukalla

    24. The Red Sea & its Many Guises

    25. Stepping Back in Time in ‘Suakin’

    26. Convoy up The Red Sea

    27. Meeting with the Prince

    28. Big Decisions: to Continue or to Fly Home

    29. Freedom from the Red Sea

    30. Compass Problems & Repairs at Paphos ‘Cyprus’

    31. Change of Course to Kastellorizon

    32. Sailing Overload

    33. The Beauty of Stromboli

    34. Port St Louis & the Canal & River Experience

    35. The Beauty of Lyon

    36. Ebony in Paris

    37. Across The English Channel

    38. What after Cruising?

    About the Author

    Glossary of Sailing Terms

  • Caution To The Wind

    By Linda K. Ford


    Chapter 1


    A Dream or Reality


    Looking back now, I can remember these words clearly

    and distinctly.


    “For many years, going back as far as I can remember,

    I’ve had a yearning to sail to England,” said Geoff, one

    sunny spring afternoon. We were sitting on a cliff along

    the dramatic coastline of New Zealand’s east coast at

    the time, near the small town of Kaikoura. The towering

    peaks of the lightly snow-capped mountains glistened in

    the distance as the grey seals lazed on the rocks below.


    He continued, his voice vibrating a passion from deep

    within. “I’ve reached a stage in my life where if I don’t

    make the attempt now, it may be lost forever.” He stood up

    to pace back and forth; the expression on his face deadly



    “Lin,” he said as he reached out for my hand. Since

    meeting you, I can see how together we can make this

    dream become a reality. Would you dare to plan such an

    adventure with me?”


    The only sound to be heard was the surf sporadically

    pounding against the shore, swirling the long strands of

    kelp, as it heaved onto the stony grey surface.


    At this stage, I had not known Geoff long, but the mere

    idea touched my sense of adventure. Thoughts speedily

    race through my mind, as there was much to consider. For

    some weeks after, Geoff and I discussed our options. My

    main concern was my two children, Mathew and Nicole,

    who had been living with me since the breakup with my

    husband, years before. Geoff believed it to be too risky to

    take them with us, having never attempted an overseas



    We estimated that it could take up to 3-4 years to

    arrange and around 15 months to sail to England. After

    many hours of deliberation, I decided to talk to my ex-husband, Phillip, to see if he would have the children live

    with him during this time. I planned to have them join me

    at some stage of the journey. It was this thought that made

    it more manageable.


    I never realized at the time how this conversation and my

    initial decision to sail would, in the future affect my life

    and my children’s so dramatically.......