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kodiak float plane charters
any one have any good reports on a reliable float plane charter from the town of kodiak?
There are several. Seahawks, Andrews, Island Air.... All of loyal followings of hunters who would fly with no one else because of great service. I have flown with Andrews and Island, couldn't go wrong with either. I can't say enough great things about Taj with Island Air though. If your date window works with them, can't find a more reasonable and cool bunch to deal with. I will be flying with Taj again this year.
I have flown with Andrew Air before with a good experience. I hadn't heard of Island Air until last month from a friend who is a guide who had good things to say about them.
We used Seahawk air no issues.
Sounds like the right question is: Are there any you would avoid?
Im going there next spring and have spoken with all three. Its a toss up for me at this point.
Island Air for me! I think their fleet of planes is the most diverse on the Island as well.
Nothing wrong with the other two main players either but Taj is a friend and he's been nothing but great the past several years while flying with him.
We were very happy with Island Air's service two years ago.
Island Air is the one with the TV show?
Sorry. We used North River Air, not Island Air. Taj Shoemaker is who we dealt with. Unless there are two different Taj's, I think Nick and I are talking about the same guy. Perhaps North River has merged with Island Air. I'm sure Nick or Bob will clear it up.
Whenever I hunt Kodiak there is only one guy that I call. Roland at Seahawk Air. He has a very well maintained Beaver and he drives it like wearing an old pair of blue jeans. He also has a price break depending on how much gear you guys have so he can price match smaller planes like the 206. I have never heard of anyone having a bad trip with Rolan.
Steke is correct in that Taj and his partner bought Island Air.
No TV show TD, not that I'm aware of though Taj does a fair bit of flying for several other Alaska based TV shows.
Rolan at Seahawk is another great option.
Thanks for all the great feedback, if there are four hunters what is weight limit per hunter and will they take your bow case as i fly with it and use my clothes in place of the foam? Thanks for any info you have
Weight usually goes by what plane your using. A beaver typically allows 1200lbs. 185 allows around 700 I think. Those weights include your body.
We used a Beaver and a 185 last fall for 4 guys. I put my bow in a soft case and clothes in a big dry bag. A bow case will fit, but it'll take up more room and extra weight.
Had to go look.... Yeah it's "Alaska's Ultimate Bush Pilots" and Island Air is usually the featured transporter. I enjoy the show and catch it when I can..... a bit dramatic.... but then it can get kinda dramatic on, or above Kodiak pretty fast I would guess.
Interesting show, those ol beavers and radial engines are classic, make a sound all their own. My grandfather had a Stearman. My dad owned planes from a Piper Pacer, C170, C180 up through his last one the 185. Used to have my pilots license many years ago and have long held plans of getting it again a few years down the road from now. Lots of plans....
Most of the pilots I've talked to much prefer duffels and soft cases. Not many square or flat areas for gear in aircraft, duffels and such conform better. I'd think a soft bowcase best, just load it last on top of everything. I tore all the foam out of my hardcase years ago and put the bow in a softcase and then into my hardcase. Always have a softcase to use when I get where I'm going.
Of the 10+ years that I have been flying hunters up here in Alaska I can only remember 1 or 2 hunters that brought their big heavy, awkward, hard cases in the plane with us. And those guys flat out refused to take their weapons out of the cases if they were flying. In the fall we typically have 5-10 hard gun cases at any given time in our storage area back at base.
When I'm loading hunters I just have them hold the weapon until the very last thing so they can see how it is loaded. Take the quiver off and lay it all up on top nice and secure.
It is also way better to pack 3 or 4 soft duffles inside your big roll around suitcase so when we start loading you can just leave the roll around with your hard gun case. The thing I hate the most is the guys who show up with a frame pack, fully loaded with all sorts of stuff tied to the outside. Just makes it hard to get into a good spot with all the stuff tied on to the outside or side pockets bulging.
I'll throw one more into the mix. Harvey's Flying Service. I've flown with Steve many times. He fly's a Widgeon, which is a twin amphib. Very cool plane to fly in. I think all those guys are good at what they do. Harvey is just another option.
Thanks for the name greatly appreciated
I used Andrew. great services
I've used Andrew Airways 4 times... started with them and have no reason to go shopping. Excellent service. If you get to fly with Willy, you're in for a treat. Ed F
I have flown with Island and Andrews. Andrews the past several times. Like Ed, I don't see a reason to change. I also agree with a flight with Willy as the pilot. Good times!
Kingfisher Air is another one.
If you're flying with Island, I was quoted 300 lbs if you're flying in a cub on floats. That's total. So if you weigh 300 lbs, you'll need a bigger or second plane. Taj and his partner now own Island Air.
PenAir is another option if they are still around. This was in the 1991 on a Kodiak deer hunt.
Have used Andrews Air 5 times now. Had a great experience each and every time. Have wanted to try out Harveys Air Service. He uses a Grumman Widgeon, which lands on the belly of the plane. Spoke to him a few times and he is a super nice guy. His Widgeon will carry 1200lbs like a Beaver.
again folks thanks for all of your replies very helpful