Police received an emergency call from the operator of a skiff adrift in Richardson Bay at 8:28 p.m.
The boater, Michael Lee, told police he had run out of fuel just off of Schoonmaker Point Marina.
The strong winds and outgoing tide were making the boat drift quickly toward Tiburon, police said.
Police launched one of the department's patrol boats and searched for the boat. Lee continued updating police on his location over the phone, police said.
In less than 30 minutes, police located Lee and safely got him onboard their boat and towed his skiff back to Sausalito.
When they found him, Lee was only 20 or 30 yards away from crashing into the rocks off the southern tip of Belvedere, police said.