Obviously some got their training in the military.
Left, Right, Left
When you see the whites of their eyes, you know you're gonna have a Bad Day.
"96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
I believe to the right. If I see a boat coming straight toward me, head on, I will make a hard and obvious right to show my intentions.
Excerpt from USCG Navigation Rules:
RULE 14 - HEAD-ON
RULE 15 - CROSSING SITUATIONS
(a) Unless otherwise agreed [Inld] When two power-driven vessels are meeting on reciprocal or nearly reciprocal courses so as to involve risk of collision each shall alter her course to starboard so that each shall pass on the port side of the other.
(b) Such a situation shall be deemed to exist when a vessel sees the other ahead or nearly ahead and by night she could see the masthead lights of the other in a line or nearly in a line and/ [Intl] or both sidelights and by day she observes the corresponding aspect of the other vessel.
(c) When a vessel is in any doubt as to whether such a situation exists she shall assume that it does exist and act accordingly.
(d) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this Rule, a power-driven vessel operating on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i), as appropriate. [Inld]
When two power-driven vessels are crossing so as to involve risk of collision, the vessel which has the other on her own starboard side shall keep out of the way and shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, avoid crossing ahead of the other vessel.
(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or water specified by the Secretary, a power-driven vessel crossing a river shall keep out of the way of a power-driven vessel ascending or descending the river. [Inld]
Here's a link to the entire rule guide:
In a river all rules are off. Two converging boats will have to act according to the situation, not by rules in a textbook. Speed, boat weight, and shape of a corner dictate.
I am fairly new to jet boating but it seems pretty clear that all rules are not "off" the boat traveling upstream yields to the one traveling down as it is spelled out in the regulations quoted above.
A heavy, fast boat traveling downstream into a hard right corner is less capable of running tight to the inside of the corner than the little boat coming upstream is. When I'm the guy in the little boat I'm very aware of that. I'll go inside and let the big, heavy, fast boat take the straighter line. And don't forget you share that river with prop boats and air boats. They have different capabilities with respect to maneuverability.
Run twisty rivers for another 25-30 years and get back to me if you want to argue about it.
One thing's for sure. Since one of my very best friends was killed on the Deshka in a head-on 4 years ago, I always leave room to maneuver in either direction. Lots of boaters hug the inside in corners. I used to. I don't now.
As for me, I bought a fairly light boat and just enjoy getting out so I am generally not in a hurry especially when in twisty stuff. I can only imagine what it would be like to be learning in a big heavy inboard.(d) Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this Rule, a power-driven vessel operating on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i), as appropriate. [Inld]
I went to the USCG site provided by Lone Wolf 1. I checked the definitions of "Western Rivers" and "waters specified by the Secretary". Neither of those definitions include rivers in Alaska. So, Rule 14 (d) does not apply here. Only rules 14 (a), (b), and (c) apply here which do require that opposite direction merging vessels shall alter course to the right on rivers in Alaska.
Unfortunately, I think Rule 14 (d) giving the "downbound" vessel the right of way would work better on shallow Alaska rivers navigated by jetboats.
Note, though, that Rule 2 (b) states "In construing and complying with these Rules, due regard shall be had to all dangers of navigation and collision and to any special circumstances, including the limitations of the vessels involved, which may make a departure from these Rules necessary to avoid immediate danger." [emphasis added]
Irrespective of what the USCG says in its Inland Rules, I think I've seen it stated in a State of Alaska boating pamphlet that upstream boats should give way to downstream boats.
Thanks for the additional information! It seems clear that down-bound vessels should have the right of way. I wonder what would have to be done to "make it so". I don't like new laws for the sake of new laws but in this case it sure seems like there is an obvious need. That info should also be clearly posted at boat launches on all flowing waters.
I agree with the vessel moving down stream having the right away. I can't agree with having a rule saying I have to keep the other boat on my port side. You have to make a decision based on the situation.
I have run in some pretty twisted rivers for years and have had to make quik decisions to avoid a collision and sometimes going around left is better than right.
I also have no issues parking on the bank to avoid a collision. thats why I have strict rules on the boat when running water like that. The Deshka can get hairy and thats why the wife and kids sit in back on the bench seats so the captain chairs will stop them, not the windshield if we have to go hard aground to avoid a collision... we even do this running shallow, wifeys only 5' tall and can't stop herself with her little short arms.... I sure hope she doesn't read this!!!
I never really have had an oncoming passing issue until this past weekend. It was on the Su between Deska and the launch. Strange others have had the same issue in this area. I understand that boats coming down stream have the right away, but I believe they should still pass to the right when they have the option and power to do so. My understanding of the law is that the upstream moving vessel has more control and options not so that the downstream running vessel can act the fool or play chicken. This weekend I had 3-4 boats keep trying to play chicken or pass on the left when there was plenty of water to maneuver. It seemed that some were not even watching the river traffic at all.
Sorry about the strange spacing in the last post. I didn't try yo do that.
Memorial weekend always brings out the crazy ones.
Im not for new law but if I need to pass a test to drive a car, why not a boat? It would limit the amount of issues we have on the water
Also Rule #2 (b) " In construing and complying with these Rules due regard shall be had to all dangers of navigation and collision, and to any special circumstances, including the limitations of the vessels involved, which may make a departure from these Rules necessary to avoid immediate danger "
100% agree. Running rivers is a whole different animal in its self. Depending on the boat that is coming I act differently. Big in boards I let them have the deeper outside water if possible. (Depending on how far out I see or hear them coming) I make a obvious turn to my intentions and hold my bearing. This technique has worked for me and others for years. As always a friendly wave when we pass and everything works out ok. I have the occasional on-coming new boater or inexperienced boater that may seem lost on how to manuver a river boat. I usually let them have the whole river to avoid an unnessasary accidents.
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The biggest thing I've noticed is people need to SLOW down around tight turns! If that means coming off step to be safe then so be it. A lot of near misses could be avoided if people would just stop flying around blind turns and just back off the speed. I always just assume there is a boat coming at me and navigate accordingly.
"If your not the lead dog.... the view never changes"