Adventure | Writing | Photography


I’m Ellen, a writer, photographer, and ocean sailor. I sailed around the world in my very early 20s in a small sloop that could be called primitive; that voyage cemented my love of adventure and launched my writing career.

My writing and photography have comprised several hundred magazine articles, book contributions, cover shots, and double-page spreads in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. I’ve been honored to receive awards for both my sailing voyages and my creative work. I’m also a small airplane pilot.

Ocean Sailing

I’ve sailed 60,000 nautical miles over the world’s oceans, including a circumnavigation of the globe and a voyage to the polar ice edge. I’ve crossed the Equator four times and the Arctic Circle twice; and I’ve weathered hurricane-force winds rounding the Cape of Good Hope. My longest passages have taken me out of sight of land for a month at a time. All my voyages have been aboard pretty small and rudimentary boats, and almost all the repairs and maintenance has been DIY.

Adventure Writing

I’ve written for SAIL, Cruising World, Classic Boat, Sailing Today, Pacific Yachting, Alert Diver, Backcountry, and more. You can read a small sampling of my published work here.

I’m a contributing editor to Ocean Navigator, a Guide on OffCenterHarbor.com, and I write an on-going series for Water Craft. I serve on the Awards Committee of the Cruising Club of America and on the judging panel for Ocean Navigator’s marine technology award. I formerly taught writing and history at two small boarding schools. I hold a BA from Yale University.

Many thanks to the sponsors and supporters of my sailing voyages

All text and images © Ellen Leonard, 2023, all rights reserved. Please get in touch for permissions. Thanks.