Steady, dependable Coast Guard Lieutenant Raymond "Ray" Dower and reckless aviator Thomas "Speed" Bradshaw are the closest of friends. Ray saves the life of Captain Tobias Bliss, tramp steamer skipper, in a daring rescue at sea. Speed flies the injured man back to the base hospital, where the two officers later visit him. There Ray meets Nancy Bliss, Bliss' grand-daughter, and falls in love with her. Speed meets her at a dance and urges Ray to propose before some other guy does. Ray is assigned to flood rescue duty, and Speed and Nancy start going out together and discover they are in love. Angry at first, Ray acts as best man at the wedding. Speed reverts to his old habits and often leaves Nancy alone. Broken-hearted, Nancy returns to her grandfather's home, where Ray often visits her. He is there when Speed, stunting over the house to gain Nancy's attention, cracks up his plane. Ray is forced to testify at Speed's court-martial, and Speed believes Ray is trying to ruin him and win Nancy. Dispatched to rescue work in the frozen North, Ray is lost in a polar blizzard. Nancy pleas to Speed to fly north and search for Ray and Speed, thinking Nancy loves Ray, agrees to go.