Five minutes with Jackie Peers
Jackie Peers, our former hiking columnist, is sailing into the blue.
You are sailing back home to New zealand. Congratulations.
It’s been a dream of ours for a long time to sail the slow way home from Hong Kong to New Zealand. It’s a now or never kind of thing.
How did you prepare?
Our yacht Brigadoon (a 45-foot yawl) arrived in Hong Kong five years ago, and we have been quietly preparing and learning ever since. We have cast our pick into most of Hong Kong’s alluring bays and spent a lot of time on the water. Hebe Haven Yacht Club has been key. I can't think of anywhere that aspiring yachties could get more help, encouragement and friendship.
Where are you going first?
As with most sailboats leaving Hong Kong, our first stop will be the Philippines. We hope to have a bit of a rest up after all the work getting ready. We're going to start right up the very north, at the Calayan Islands, where we hope to view the humpback whales that gather in spring. From there we'll wind south and then east towards New Zealand. There are quite a few islands on the way – Borneo, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, the Solomons, Vanuatu and New Caledonia etc. That's the plan, but we'll take it one step at a time.
Any worries about the journey?
Of course! I've never done anything like this in my life. It will really test us. I'm worried about how Fergus, our dog, will get on.