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When You Fall Asleep in Your Fishing Boat


Aground at East Beach, North Bass Island, Saturday, August 18. 2007


Photos courtesy of Robin Burris-Cadez


The water level started going down rapidly Friday morning, so my guess that the boat was beached then was correct, even though the pictures are all from Saturday afternoon. When I first got the pictures, I initially thought this happened on Saturday awhile before the pictures were taken. But it quickly occurred to me that it must have happened on Friday because that's when the water went down. I had gone from Middle Bass to Kelleys at 9AM on Friday morning in one foot waves, but the waves were already running at 3-5 feet when I returned two hours later. And they got much higher in the afternoon. With the strong wind from the west, the water level also went down over two feet.

The fisherman left Turtle Creek, 20 miles southwest of the island and just northwest of Davis Bessie, on Friday morning with no cell phone or radio, and without checking the forecast. He spent the night in the boat, with no blanket and no protection from the waves. He had one bottle of water and no food.

The boat didn't run after being pulled back into the water. There wasn't much left of the prop. The boat is a 79 Mako, a nice boat in its day, but the tow may have cost more than the boat was worth.



After a nap: Not only aground, but wedged into the trees and bushes. And the water level has gone way down.

Discussing removal options

The engine may still work, but the prop is useless and the other repairs are going to be expensive.

East Point on Middle Bass Island is visible in the background.







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