The Humpback Whales Return

Sunday, July 2, 2017 | Category: Uncategorized

Starting in the month of May and until late September – early October, Humpback whales are a frequent sighting in the Ketchikan area. They migrate from the warm waters of Hawaii to the abundant feeding grounds of Alaska. Humpbacks have been spotted around Ketchikan swimming and feeding or in some cases “breaching” and “bubble feeding”. Guests are often treated with these sightings when the timing is right.

The incredible size of the Humpback whale is recorded and explained with various online resources. According to Oceana.org, “The humpback whale is one of the largest animals on Earth, growing to lengths of more than 50 feet (16 m) and weighing in at around 40 tons (36 metric tonnes). This incredible size is only possible because of this species’ aquatic lifestyle and the buoyancy provided by seawater.” They go on to say that on land, an animal as large as the humpback whale would almost certainly be crushed under its own weight.

SeaWind Aviation recently participated in the rescuing of a Humpback whale that had become entangled in a barge anchor cable off Prince of Wales Island. Crews from the following local businesses participated in the rescue of this grateful creature: Alaska Commercial Divers, Olson Marine, Sea Alaska and SeaWind Aviation. Along with KRBD link previously quoted, additional information can be found in a KTUU article called “Marine rescue caught on camera when a whale became tangled in cable” to learn more about this incredible encounter, watch a video of the event or see more pictures of the rescue.

Local sightings are not limited to on the water from a boat – an astute observer could get lucky with a sighting from the air! When on a Misty Fjords, crab tour or bear tour, be sure to keep an eye out for dark shapes in the water or the unmistakable plume of mist coming from the surface of the sea. These behemoth mammals usually hang around the surface for a minute or two for eyes that are patient and paying attention.

References

Frequently Asked Questions

Tuesday, April 11, 2017 | Category: Uncategorized

We speak to many visitors each year and in preparation for their visit, they ask a lot of questions. Alaska requires some research to enhance the experience and we gladly welcome any and all questions. We decided to put together a short list of top questions from customers to share.

What time is it there? Alaska is on its own time zone, and the whole state remains the same with the exception of communities that do not observe daylight savings time. The Alaska time zone is 4 hours behind the Eastern time zone, 3 hours behind the Central time zone, 2 hours behind the Mountain time zone and 1 hour behind the Pacific time zone.

Do I need a passport to come to Ketchikan? Alaska is the 49th state in the Union making it as easy to travel around as any other part of the United States. Many visitors arrive via cruise ships which require the possession of a passport when embarking or disembarking in a foreign port (i.e. Vancouver or Victoria B.C.). However, if you plan to do a closed loop cruise embarking and disembarking in the same US port you will only need a government issued ID. Furthermore, if you plan to travel into Canada on your Alaska vacation you will be required to have a passport.

What makes your company / tour different? When you fly with SeaWind Aviation, you will feel like a person not a number. Owner / Operators Steve and Lesley Kamm offer over 30 years of experience and will cater to you from the pick-up location through the end of your flight. Additionally, tours are longer, they offer in flight communication and result in a more personalized experience rather than a standard packaged shore excursion.

Ethical Wildlife Viewing

Monday, July 4, 2016 | Category: Uncategorized
A Brown Bear munches on grass in the Misty Fjords

A Brown Bear munches on grass in the Misty Fjords

Seawind Aviation’s Misty Fjords and fly out bear viewing tours all offer the opportunity to view wildlife in their natural habitat. In order to do this responsibly, we have to be sure proper permits are in place and that all our pilots / guides understand how to respect the wildlife they encounter with guests. Bears and whales need a large “girth” or span around them to provide a level of comfort for the animal. Bears often respond to threatening behavior in a dangerous way and whales are known to curiously eyeball onlookers in close proximity. These are natural reactions to not feeling safe and comfortable and that is not the goal of an ethical wildlife viewer.

According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) the recommend several practices to enforce ethical wildlife viewing. In addition to providing wildlife with adequate space, learn to recognize signs of alarm. Furthermore, be respectful of any areas where young, sick, orphaned or injured animals may be present. Maintain control of your household pet that may accompany you while wildlife viewing or simply leave them at home. Finally, don’t attempt to feed an animal no matter how desperate they may look. Changing an animal’s natural pattern of behavior could create a potentially dangerous outcome of both humans and wildlife alike. By practicing and demanding ethical wildlife viewing, you are doing your part to sustain an incredible resource in a safe and productive way

We had a fabulous summer here in Ketchikan that included meeting so many wonderful people from all over the world! Here is a little glimpse of some of those incredible moments! Thank you all for allowing us to share this beautiful place we call home with you!

Stevie helping out

Sunday, January 13, 2013 | Category: Uncategorized
Stevie helping out Adam this past summer.

Stevie helping out Adam this past summer.

Steve deicing airplane prior to flight in December.

Steve deicing airplane prior to flight in December.