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Wild Seas to Greenland 

Rebecca Hayter 

Published by Oceanspirit Publishing on 1 March 2021, RRP $39.95 

A sailing adventure with ocean racer Ross Field, written by well-known New Zealand yachting journalist Rebecca Hayter. 

When New Zealand ocean racing skipper Ross Field retired from professional sailing, he was already looking for his next, unusual adventure. In a dusty boatyard in France, he bought a 20-year-old aluminium yacht. She was a mess, but he knew the yacht was immensely strong. Ross named her Rosemary, refitted her for the high latitudes and set his sights on the Northwest Passage. 

Yachting journalist Rebecca Hayter followed his refit in detail; DIY pundits will love these chapters. Then she signed on as crew. 

Sometimes in awe of her strong-willed skipper, she takes her readers along for the ride: observing Ross’s handling of the boat in the storms of the North Atlantic, sharing his war stories from famous yacht races and laughing at his jokes. 

The central part of the story is set in the chilling vastness of Greenland fjords: ice bergs, whales and ‘fishing boats that munch growlers for breakfast’. 

Rebecca is a skilled and candid writer; she shares life on board, highs and lows of ocean cruising, and her own personal challenges. 

She also shares excerpts from Sheila in the Wind, written by her father Adrian Hayter, who sailed around the world single-handed in the 1950s and 60s. He set sail out of desperation with virtually no sailing knowledge, navigating by sextant, communicating ship-to-ship by Morse code. It’s a poignant juxtaposition to Rebecca’s experience, sailing with one of New Zealand’s most experienced ocean skippers, with instant navigation, communication and highly skilled in weather routing technology to avoid North Atlantic storms. 

Wild Seas to Greenland is a blend of Kiwi DIY, technical sailing and life on board. It will appeal to sailors and adventurers everywhere, whether they are on the water or safely at home, but sharing the journey nonetheless. 

About the Author 

Rebecca Hayter is well known as a yachting journalist within New Zealand and as a contributor to high-profile overseas yachting magazines, including Boat International, SuperSailWorld and YachtingWorld, all based in UK; Cruising Helmsman, Australia; and Yachts International and Sail, both based in USA. 

Rebecca bought a 26ft yacht to develop her sailing skills before crewing on a 50ft Beneteau from Florida, USA to Auckland, New Zealand. She joined Boating New Zealand as yachting editor in 1998 and became editor a year later. She helmed the magazine through a major transformation to win Magazine of the Year, Special Interest and Editor of the Year – Supreme Overall Winner in 2006. 

During this time, she wrote Endless Summer and Oceans Alone, both published by HarperCollins. 

After resigning in 2008, Rebecca pursued a freelance career for a wide range of publications including NZ Life & Leisure, Boating New Zealand and The Shed and wrote What You Wish For – one man’s guide to life, death and alternative therapies with the late Paul Blacklow. 

She returned to Boating New Zealand as editor in 2013. 

In 2015, Rebecca resigned to buy a lifestyle property she named Oceanspirit in her home town, Golden Bay. After completing her voyage with Ross Field in 2017, the story told in Wild Seas to Greenland, she sailed the coast of Maine in 2018 and crossed the Atlantic by yacht in 2019. Her article, On a Small Boat to Greenland, formed the basis for a chapter in Wild Seas to Greenland and won Highly Commended for Best International Travel Feature in the Travel Media Awards. 

Along with learning about sheep, chooks and growing a vegetable garden at Oceanspirit, she has finished building an 8ft Spencer plywood dinghy and learned to drive a tractor. Her sometimes humorous, sometimes deplorable take on such adventures filled her column, High Heels and Gumboots in North & South magazine and won Best Columnist/Blogger in the Magazine Media Awards 2020. 

Rebecca is available for interview 

For media queries, review and giveaway copies, extracts and interviews, please contact publicist Karen McKenzie, 027 693 9044, karen@lighthousepr.co.nz, www.lighthousepr.co.nz