Lyndsey Holt, from Invermoriston in the Highlands, rescued the 71-year-old tourist after he fell into the River Moriston near Loch Ness.
The pensioner, from Australia, fell 15ft into the icy water.
His wife alerted staff at nearby Glenmoriston Stores, and local postie Ms Holt, her father Frank Holt and 14-year-old nephew Lewis Eastment ran to his aid.
Lyndsey managed to loop a rope around the man then held it to stop him from floating away until rescue crews arrived. 21 firefighters from Fort Augustus, Inverness and Fort William worked to rescue the man who is now recovering at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness.