The Ship Report is All Things Maritime!

Ship Report podcasts take you to a special corner of the world: the Mighty Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest. Nautical lore, news and info, mariner interviews, daily international ship traffic, and the inside scoop on our formidable marine weather. Join maritime journalist Joanne Rideout on the Ship Report, as we explore the fascinating nautical world, on the Upper Left Edge of Oregon and beyond.  The Ship Report is proud to celebrate 20 years on the air!

An ususual ship that does a lot of important work

This week you might have seen a ship with a black hull and a red stripe sitting seemingly motionless in the river, unlike most vessels that are on a journey form one port to another. If you'd been able to get a closer look at that ship, you'd have seen people hard at...

Why pilot and other specialized mariner expertise is so important in waterways like ours

Today a look at disaster averted in the UK, where pilots and tug crews kept a big containership from running aground. Expertise like this is part of doing business every day here on the river, and most of us have no idea it's happening.  

The GSL Eleni and her day on the river

Yesterday, people along the Columbia River saw an unusual sight, a 1000-foot long containership being towed to Portland by four tugboats, in a fascinating and complicated example of coordination between multiple highly-skilled and experienced marine professionals.

Local fishing vessel could face $40k fines for shutting off AIS

Another local news story, this one with expensive consequences. The captain of a local fishing boat is facing a fine of more than $40k for shutting off his AIS transponder while the boat was underway near the mouth of the Columbia River. We'll talk about AIS and why...

Containership set to be towed up the Columbia to Portland early Tuesday

Very early tomorrow morning an unusual occurrence will happen on the river: Tugs will tow a large containership upriver to Portland to have her rudder repaired. She's been towed all the way from Seattle and will end up at Portland's Swan Island shipyard. Getting her...

Columbia River Ship Traffic

Approximate Vessel Travel Times
  • Portland/Vancouver -Astoria: 6-8 hours
  • Kalama -Astoria: 5 hours
  • Longview -Astoria: 3.5 hours
  • Columbia River Bar – Astoria: 1.5 hours
Times vary according to tidal conditions, current, weather, and individual vessel horsepower.
Water Speed & Currents

Curated Links

Arts
Tides

When’s High Tide where you are?  Find Tidal info at www.saltwatertides.com

Tide times are often listed in 24 hour time.  For times after noon, subtract 1200 from the time to get regular clock time. Ex: 1300 hrs – 1200 = 1:00 pm)

MLLW:  Also, tides are referenced to Mean Lower Low Water, a reference point for depth on many nautical charts. MLLW is the average of the lower of the two low tides in a day, over a 19-year cycle. Minus tides are lower than MLLW.

Adjustments: If you’re right on the coast, subtract an hour from these times. Upriver, highs and lows happen later. For instance, in Knappa, add an hour. In Clatskanie, add 2 hours and 15 minutes.

The Ship Report
Ship Report Podcasts

An ususual ship that does a lot of important work

This week you might have seen a ship with a black hull and a red stripe sitting seemingly motionless in the river, unlike most vessels that are on a journey form one port to another. If you'd been able to get a closer look at that ship, you'd have seen people hard at...

Why pilot and other specialized mariner expertise is so important in waterways like ours

Today a look at disaster averted in the UK, where pilots and tug crews kept a big containership from running aground. Expertise like this is part of doing business every day here on the river, and most of us have no idea it's happening.  

The GSL Eleni and her day on the river

Yesterday, people along the Columbia River saw an unusual sight, a 1000-foot long containership being towed to Portland by four tugboats, in a fascinating and complicated example of coordination between multiple highly-skilled and experienced marine professionals.

Local fishing vessel could face $40k fines for shutting off AIS

Another local news story, this one with expensive consequences. The captain of a local fishing boat is facing a fine of more than $40k for shutting off his AIS transponder while the boat was underway near the mouth of the Columbia River. We'll talk about AIS and why...

Containership set to be towed up the Columbia to Portland early Tuesday

Very early tomorrow morning an unusual occurrence will happen on the river: Tugs will tow a large containership upriver to Portland to have her rudder repaired. She's been towed all the way from Seattle and will end up at Portland's Swan Island shipyard. Getting her...

10-Minute Ship Reports: Monday through Thursday, featuring  Daily Ship Traffic, Marine Weather, News and Interviews Ship Report Minutes:  On Fridays, where we answer listener questions. Short and sweet!

The Ship Report is also broadcast  Weekdays at 8:49 am on  KMUN Radio Astoria, Oregon

Columbia River Bar
“Pilot transfer” is when a pilot disembarks or boards a ship. Ships generally must by law have a river or bar pilot on board when they are on the Columbia or Willamette Rivers. The bar and river pilots have separate pilotage grounds defined by the Oregon Legislature.

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Meet Joanne Rideout
Producer Joanne Rideout is a journalist and photographer who created The Ship Report in 2003. Since then Joanne and has been interviewing, writing and photographing the maritime world and its interesting people as much as she possibly can.
Ship Horn Signals

Commonly Heard off Astoria

One prolonged blast every two minutes or less: vessel operating in fog.

Five consecutive horn blasts: warning signal that means literally “I do not know your intention.” This generally means another vessel is in the way of a ship in the channel, and is being asked to move before they collide.

Three short blasts: Vessel going in reverse

One long blast followed by three short: signal for the change of pilots. Soon after this signal, you’ll see the pilot launch Arrow II head out to a passing ship, to facilitate the transfer of bar and river pilots.