I've done the Columbia
River bar, as well as some others off the Oregon
coast. If you pay attention to the tide tables and listen to the reports, you generally come out fine. If you ignore them, or have to enter in an emergency
(as I did on the Umpqua River bar), you get a wild ride or worse. The Coast Guard cutter
that preceded us, broached, righted itself, and waited to pick up our bodies. We surfed a Hinkley 49 in, over the bar, pegging the mechanical knotmeter
, and had a great story to tell at another form of bar. Literally, "surfed", the bow dropped on a 15 foot wave, we didn't broach, and made it in without broaching. It wasn't easy, but it was fast.