Thank You to the Good Samaritans - Monday 6-21


You were the green Northriver that towed me in off of Columbia City to the St Helens marina. Yes, i told you how thankful i was at the time, but thanks just doesn't seem to cut it when you kept me from becoming a grease spot on the bow of the tanker that was bearing down on me.

It was just a minor fuel line problem...and i got the boat fired up at the ramp after you left. but again, it's the unforseen and unavoidable "little" issues that leave one stranded in the shipping lane that can get you.

you wouldn't accept more than a thanks.....and while i appreciate that, i still feel like i owe ya one.

The river is a dangerous place and every once in a while, it likes to remind us just how close we are to imminant danger.

i would also like to thank you for deeming my girlfriend a "keeper" and not tossing off the tow line to "throw her back" when i was aboard your vessle piloting you in. ;):D

You gentleman are the epitome of what is good among fishermen on the river. i would have done the same for you had i seen you (or anyone) in distress. i know it is a hassle to take 40 minutes out of your fishing time to lend a hand, but it is that willingness to help that keeps us all safe.

i am sure your good deed will reap you benefits to come...hopefully the fish gods smiled on ya and you filled your limits when you got back "on the ball".

thanks again.... i still see that ship coming down on me when i close my eyes at night.....and the sight of your boat coming to the rescue is something i won't soon forget.

yeah, actually there was no crowd that day. we were all alone down there and they were 1 of 3 other boats out...and they were a ways upriver from us at the time. i actually had no real thought that there would have been anyone to come to our aid since they were far enough upriver to really not notice what was going on unless they were really paying attention. i am glad they were.


Well-known member
Wow. Neat story. And we're all glad that you didn't add a grease spot to the water's surface.


Well-known member
WOW, Great Job Samaritans,

That makes a near tragedy into a Great Beautiful Day.

Swamp Puppy, BRO, i'm mighty Happy you & your gal friend are in good health.
so, to expand on the story a bit and demonstrate just how fast things can go wrong out there...

we had been sitting off of columbia city on the washington side of the channel just outside the channel boundry in about 35ft of water. we were getting tired of fighting all the salad coming down the river and the current was just ripping even at high slack. we made a decision to move to shallower and more protected waters and see what we could do.

We pulled the anchor with the boat and as i was idling and drifting down pulling in the slack anchor line, the motor just slowly puttered out. uh-oh.

by this time, due to pulling the anchor and drifting down with the current, we had ended up inside the shipping lane and pointed to the far (oregon) side. this particular spot doesn't leave alot of room for the big boys to maneuver as they are making a bend just below st helens.

looked up river and saw a large tanker making his downriver run just passing the bottom end of sand island. i figured i had just under 5 minutes to clear his path.

out came the paddles and we got to work. it didn't take long to realize that there was no way i was clearing his path with just manpower.

my GF kept paddling (all 120 lbs of her) while i stole a minute to look at the motor. the motor runs solid and i knew this had to be something with the fuel line or tank.

i gave the ball a quick squeeze and hit the fired up. i wasn't going to waste any time with anything and just kit the gas, still pointed to the far side of the channel, which happened to be the way i needed to go anyway. i got about 5 seconds of forward motion out of it before it just starved out on me again. essentially plopping me right smack dab in the channel. at this point i noticed the squeeze ball was collapsed, so there was some sort of obstruction in the tank (the vents were open) or in the line. i switched tanks and tried to give it another go. during the processes of switching tanks, trying to start the motor, getting fuel back in the line, etc. the motor flooded. :mad:

at this point, i was essentially truly dead in the water. i can get a flooded motor going again in pretty short order, but i just simply did NOT have the time. the ship was getting a LOT closer.

we both paddled like heck and got to to the OR 1/4 of the channel...enough room to get a ship past us if he felt like correcting to the far side.....though from where i was sitting it didn't seem like he was going too far out of his way to make any adjustments to his course.

just about the time i was calculating our chances given the situation, was when i saw the Northriver heading our way. luck us.

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