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Conquering Clouds

By Ruth Wilson - ISBN: 9781922594648

RRP: $44.95

Conquering Clouds
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Author Bio

Adventurer at birth. Aviator for 46 years. Author first published 2018.  Same year piloted her hydrogen balloon at night along the snow-covered Swiss Alps at age 75. Landed in Italy.

A pioneer – numerous FIRSTS throughout her corporate and aviation life. 

Her ballooning has taken her throughout Europe, Canada, USA, New Zealand and Japan where she has accumulated numerous fun stories of flights and landings.

A mother of two sons who both flew balloons in their earlier years. Her two grandchildren find her sharing of the mystic amusing.

She lives near water, collects Native American art, potted plants and teapots.   

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Conquering Clouds

By Ruth Wilson - ISBN: 9781922594648

RRP: $44.95

Conquering Clouds is the story of pivotal moments and experiences throughout Ruth Wilson’s life that led her to find the courage to pilot her hydrogen balloon over the snow-covered Swiss Alps at night to land in an Italian vineyard. At 75 this adventurer was definitely not swayed by her age.

Her fight to survive a marlin fishing accident in the waters near Byron Bay is riveting.

Ruth acknowledges that her rescue by a pod of dolphins is the reason she is alive today.

"'Conquering Clouds' is an autobiography that moves at a brisk pace. Beginning with a tough childhood, the story depicts the author’s hardships, emotional struggles, her fortitude, exciting adventures, even close-calls with death. The sport of ballooning will be new to many readers, but the author’s pioneering achievements, and her nail-biting adventures in the air leave one with an appreciation of difficulties and pleasures associated with ballooning. Ruth has participated in balloon challenges in most states of Australia, and in Europe, the USA, Canada, Japan and New Zealand. I highly recommend 'Conquering Clouds'." Hugh Allan – writer

"An inspirational and fascinating account of transcending multiple limitations to reach heights of bravery and success while keeping heart, love, and soul intact. Ruth has lived a remarkable life – it’s time everyone knew about it." Carolinda Witt, award-winning author, ‘Double Agent Celery MI5’s Crooked Hero’

"Ruth Wilson is a courageous, adventurous and very determined woman. Her fascinating story is unputdownable..." Amanda Hampson, Bestselling author of 'The Olive Sisters'

"Conquering Clouds is an unputdownable memoir of a remarkable woman. This book has it all – from impoverished childhood, death-defying adventures, failed romances and international fame as a balloonist, Ruth proves she conquered far more than clouds." Libby Harkness, ghostwriter of the best-selling memoir Turia Pitt’s ‘Everything to Live For’

"A glorious story of passion and pain written with honest truth and a simple reality that invites us mere mortal readers to indulge in a life to share her pain and feel her elated freedom of her spirit as this passionate woman writes in her words and with her raw talent to achieve another milestone of her courage and fight for freedom from her demons… One of the greats in the history of this country… A triumph!” Bianca, Indie Books reviewer

A Life of Notable Firsts - Ruth E Wilson

1959, Age 16: First female to play the Last Post on Anzac Day at her hometown, Bowen North Queensland.

1960, Age 17: Crowned the First Queen of the Coral Coast.

1973, Age 30: First Australian winner Squash Championship Kobe Japan.

1976, Age 33: First female balloonist in New Zealand.

1977, Age 34: First commercial ballooning company established and managed by a sole female pilot in Australia.

1979, Age 36: First National Champion of the Australian Open Hot Air Ballooning Championship.

1981, Age 38: First Australian female to compete in World Open Hot Air Ballooning Championship in USA.

1983, Age 40: First Australian female to compete in World Open Hot Air Ballooning Championship in France.

1987, Age 44: First Australian female to compete in World Open Hot Air Ballooning Championship in Austria.

1988, Age 45: Created & managed one of the major Bicentennial Celebrations, the Trans-Australia Ballooning Challenge; a 16 day fly/drive expedition from Perth to Sydney.  Participants from 23 countries flew 78 hot air balloons.

1989, Age 46: World Record Night Sky Jump from her hot air balloon.

1995, Age 52: Responsible for pioneering media campaigns to Introduce Antioxidants, Omega Oil supplements to the Australian public.

1999, Age 56: First and only Australian female to compete as Pilot-in-Command in the prestigious gas balloon race, Gordon Bennett Cup, from Albuquerque USA.

2002, Age 59: Chief Operations Officer ARC Centre for Quantum-Atom Optics at the Australian National University – Pioneering Centre for this science.

2018, Age 75: First Australian female pilot-in-command to cross the Swiss Alps and the Italian Dolomites in a hydrogen balloon


PM Awards - Conquering Clouds 2023 SPN BOTY - Conquering Clouds 2023 Indie Book Awards - Conquering Clouds 

2023 Miles Franklin - Conquering Clouds NSW Premier+39s Award - Conquering Clouds NSW Premier+39s Award - Conquering Clouds 

2023 Gold Awards - Conquering Clouds 2023 MargColin Awards - Conquering Clouds Library of QLD Nominations 2022 - Conquering Clouds

We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture.

We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

Industry Member of

Australian Publishers Association SPN