About

The Taquan team
embodies Alaska

Who we are

We’re locals who are passionate about sharing all that we love about Alaska. We hire and train our staff for exceptional customer service and keep our state-of-the-art equipment up to the highest standards for safety. So, you get authentic Alaska, by those who love her.

Taquan Air has been serving Southeast Alaska for more than 40 years and is recognized as one of the most successful floatplane operations in Alaska, due to our safety culture and commitment to customer service.

Our history

Taquan Air has been faithfully serving the communities in and around Ketchikan for more than 40 years.

  1. The first DeHavilland Beaver is flown and recognized as one of Canada's ten greatest engineering achievements in the past 100 years.

  2. The final DeHavilland Beaver aircraft comes off production in Canada.

  3. Taquan Air Service Incorporated begins operations as a single aircraft carrier, owned and operated by Jerry Scudero, out of Metlakatla, Alaska.

  4. Taquan Air Service, Inc. purchases property in Ketchikan on Water Street.

  5. Kootznoowoo Corporation purchases 50% of Taquan Air Service, Inc. stock, enabling the carrier to purchase assets from Ketchikan Air Service.

  6. Taquan Air Service, Inc. sells off assets and streamlines operations.

  7. Venture Travel, LLC dba Taquan Air acquires Taquan Air Service, Inc. assets and begins operations under the direction of President and CEO, Brien Salazar.

  8. Venture Travel, LLC dba Taquan Air is awarded U.S. Forest Service Air Service Contract and acquires U.S. Postal Service contracts to serve Hyder, Hydaburg, and Behm Canal mail routes.

  9. "New" Taquan Air begins operating full service U.S. Mail and scheduled passenger flights in the Ketchikan area, including Prince of Wales Island.

  10. Taquan Air begins Kenmore Air six window seat modifications on DeHavilland Beaver fleet. All maintenance requirements are completed in-house by way of local labor.

  11. Taquan Air acquires and operates contracts with all major cruise lines for flightseeing tours, predominately during the summer season.

  12. Taquan Air fleet increases from 6 to 7 aircraft

  13. Taquan Air completes Kenmore six window seat modification on all 7 aircraft.

  14. Taquan Air registers to participate in the voluntary Alaska Medallion Foundation Safety in Aviation Program.

  15. Taquan Air is the first to adopt the FAA's Capstone Program and becomes the first floatplane carrier in Southeast Alaska to install state-of-the-art glass cockpit avionics navigation equipment in its entire fleet.

  16. Taquan Air completes first step in the Medallion Program by earning the Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) Avoidance Star.

  17. Taquan Air completes second step in the Medallion Program by earning the Operational Risk Management (ORM) Star.

  18. Taquan Air completes the third step in the Medallion Program by earning the Maintenance and Ground Service Star.

  19. Taquan Air completes installation of digital stereo sound systems in each aircraft and replaces all existing headsets with digital noise canceling headsets.

  20. Taquan Air completes its fourth step in the Medallion Program by earning the Safety Program Star.

  21. Taquan Air is recognized for being one of two Part-135 floatplane operators in the state of Alaska to achieve Four Star Rating in the Medallion Program.

  22. Taquan Air relocates from waterfront base at 1007 Water Street to the new 3.5 acre business park, Harbor Point.

  23. Taquan Air relocates for the last time at 4085 Tongass Avenue into a brand new, custom-built state-of-the-art terminal and hangar building.

  24. Taquan Air commences the 2008 season with a two day Grand Opening celebration at the new facilities. Events included a totem pole raising ceremony, native tribal dancing, and public barbeque. Hundreds of guests turned out to celebrate and congratulate.

  25. The fifth and final step in the Medallion Foundation program is completed with Taquan earning its Internal Audit Star. An audit is conducted to determine the company’s eligibility for the Medallion Shield.

  26. Company President Brien Salazar attended an awards presentation to receive the Medallion Shield plaque for Taquan Air.

  27. Taquan Air purchases Alaskan assets of Promech Air and expands fleet to 16 aircraft and two maintenance facilities.

  28. Taquan Air's fleet included 11 Beavers, 3 Otter, and 1 Caravan.

  29. Taquan Air's fleet included 11 Beavers, 3 Otters.

  30. Taquan Air's fleet includes 10 Beavers and 4 Otters.

Kawanti Adventures

Jump feet first into Alaskan adventures—with experienced guides excited to share it with you. Fly over fjords, zipline through the trees, see bears, and everything else Alaska has to offer.

DISCOVER ALASKA

Great Alaskan Experience!!

We recently traveled to Ketchikan by Cruise ship and booked an excursion which included all you can eat crab legs and the George inlet Lodge and then had the chance to fly back to town, over the mountains in one of these planes! The scenery was beautiful!! We also had the Alaskan experience of a water landing which was really cool as well! I would highly recommend this to anyone who has ever wanted to fly in a sea plane cause it truly is worth your time and money!

Jolene M

Magnificent Misty Fjords Seaplane

We did this excursion while in Ketchikan on a cruise on the Norwegian Pearl. This excursion was a splurge for us, but it was the highlight of our cruise. It was just our family (my aunt & uncle, and my husband, 9-year-old, and me) in the plane. Our pilot was fantastic, allowing us to take in the views put providing some commentary about what we were seeing. Enough commentary to be interesting, but not a steady stream, which allowed us to take in the beautiful scenery. We landed in Misty Fjords National Park and stepped out onto the skids/floats to further experience the beauty of the region. We loved every minute of this special trip and Taquan Air gave us an unforgettable experience. We highly recommend this tour!

Megan D.

Amazing! Not to be missed

I don't like small planes, but I love adventure so I signed up for a Sea plane tour and crab feed. The crab was amazing, but the flight was even better. We had a beautiful day, so safety was not a concern. We flew over beautiful mountains, lakes and streams, and very close to the cliffs. The sea landing was amazing. I loved this experience. GO!

Cynthia B. - California

We had so much fun!

Mike was our guide. So friendly and informative. Many times he'd turn the lady in our headphones off and narrate himself, which was better. Other times he was just quiet and let us enjoy the incredible beauty that is Misty Fjords on our own.

For us this was definitely once in a lifetime and we enjoyed every minute. The flight. The water landing where we were allowed to stand on the pontoons and breathe in the beauty. It was a wonderful experience and one we will never forget.

Molly D. - Colorado

WOW – WOW – WOW – This was my #1 excursion during my 7-day Alaskan cruise

We did the Misty Fjords tour. Family of 5 (mother, father, kids - 11, 7 & 5). We were fortunate and had the plane to ourselves (plus the pilot). It looks like the plane would hold 7 people + pilot. One passenger rides, "shotgun" in the co-pilot seat. We had a large group go, and they even took a 1-year old up.

You meet at their, very comfortable, building, watch a safety video, then are escorted to the dock by your pilot to your plane. Our pilot, Brentwood, was very experienced, safe, knowledgeable, and really engaging. I felt incredibly safe. I think the planes are powered by 9-cylinder engines. LOTS of torque. I couldn't believe how effortlessly the plane got airborne.

You fly about 30 minutes out, land in a remote lake, walk out onto the pontoons for about 15 minutes, then take off and fly back to the dock.

We flew at 3K feet. The views were beyond words. "Stunning, beautiful, breath-taking, spectacular", I could go on and on. I will never forget this excursion.

Some of the views may make the queasy a little shaky, but the experience will be worth it. Even though you're flying at 3K feet, some of the mountains you'll fly over will look like you're clearing them by only a couple hundred feet. Flying into the valley to land on the lake made my wife a little uneasy, but she was happy to do it.

Our 5-year old son fell asleep ten minutes into the trip. He never woke up for the landing/take-off on the lake, or the landing back by the dock.

Mark - North Carolina

ANAN CREEK BEAR VIEWING TOUR OUR OF KETCHIKAN – EXCELLENT FLIGHT, OUTSTANDING GUIDE

Last year, Taquan (pilot Dave and guide Mark Phillips) did an excellent job at getting us to Anan Creek. However, due to our ship's limited time in port last year, along with poor tidal conditions, we were not able to actually get to the trail head and take our tour. This year, we again booked our Anan Creek tour with Taquan and we were not disappointed. From the bus drive to their terminal, to their check-in and flight briefing process, to the flight itself, and to the tour guide - Taquan offers a safe, informative and exciting tour.

The check in and safety briefing process was thorough, yet efficient (quick). We met with our pilot, Eric, immediately after the safety briefing, and he walked us down the pier to our plane. Eric got us situated on the plane, and then our tour guide arrived. To our pleasant surprise, our guide from last year - Mark Phillips - was again our guide this year! Within a few minutes we were skimming across the water and taking off from Ketchikan. Eric provided some commentary on various landmarks while we were en route to Anan Creek, and Eric's 45 minute flight from Ketchikan to Anan Creek was smooth and comfortable. At one point as we got near Anan Creek, we encountered a rain squall, and Mark and Eric communicated and made some adjustments which ultimately allowed us to safely land at the Anan Creek landing site.

For any tourists taking a float plane to Anan Creek, it is important to be aware that at low tide there can be significant logistics regarding where/how you get to the Anan Creek trailhead. When we arrived at Anan Creek, it was low tide - and Eric brought the plane to a small dock that was far enough off shore to avoid grounding the plane. Taquan had arranged a small boat to transport us from the dock to the shore, and that worked out very well.

If you remember any tip from this review, it is this: if you want to avoid the potential hassles and delays of low-tide arrivals at Anan Creek by float plane, make sure ahead of time that your pilot knows to putter into the entrance of the creek where the water is deep enough (even at low tide) for any float plane to drop off passengers just below the ranger briefing station. It is not worth your time, or the risk of grounding, to make land anywhere near the docks or the hut.

Let me say here that our guide, Mark Phillips, was awesome. Mark was friendly, knowledgeable, and he has the experience of having flown out to Anan Creek multiple times in the past. Mark was able to provide direct in-flight guidance to our pilot when weather conditions got a bit hairy. And Mark takes safety seriously: we were in bear country, and after we made land then Mark unpacked and holstered a weapon and bear spray - which made us feel safe on our hike.

After we got on land, and after Mark made the preparations for our hike to the bear viewing area, we met with the ranger at the base of the trail and listened to a briefing. We then set out on the approximately two-thirds of a mile hike up to the bear viewing area. As we got underway, Mark guided us in the proper way to group ourselves in case we encountered a bear on the trail. And Mark also provided expert commentary on plants and wildlife that we encountered on the hike. When we arrived at the bear viewing area, Mark helped us get signed up quickly so that we could get a slot in the bear viewing blind, and Mark continued to provide awesome commentary about different bears and occurrences that we saw when we were up at the viewing platform. I can't say enough great things about Mark; we highly recommend him if you can get him for your tour.

Taquan runs a great airline, they employ an enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff (including expert guides), and our safety was their priority from start to finish. Taquan ultimately provided us with a fantastic and memorable tour, and we highly recommend them for anyone looking to take a flight/float plane tour out of Ketchikan.

ABEATS - DOVER, NH

Amazing flight

Fabulous flight with Larry! Incredible views and lots of laughs. Loved every minute of our tour from take off to landing!

Holly K - Pennsylvania

Beautiful, educational, professional

Larry, our pilot, did an excellent job from start to finish, very professional, friendly and informative. We had a sunny day, so the fjords were not misty, not his fault. As we were taxiing back to the dock, a humpback whale breached in front of us and then again off to the side, emerging with his mouth open, scooping up fish he had entrapped with curtains of air bubbles. Stunning!

John S, - Sept 2018

Amazing trip.

We did a sea plane tour of the misty fjords during our Disney cruise recently, culminating in a crab feast at the George Inlet lodge. The float plane part of the experience with Taquan air was amazing, and felt completely one of a kind. Taking off and landing on water is an experience in itself (if you have never been on a floatplane before like my family). Scenery was amazing, the staff were friendly and every passenger on board throughly enjoyed the WHOLE experience.
The only thing that stopped this review getting 5 stars is the pilot did not really communicate with us during the flight. The headphones played music and a running commentary on board, which was fair enough and quite interesting. However when we landed and disembarked the pilot asked us "Did you say the family of bears on the ground??". None of us had (too much else to see)....so we all were thinking why didn't he point them out to us while flying.
Apart from that he was very professional and friendly and made my son feel very special helping on and off the plane (a big over the shoulder carry as he disembarked which brought a HUGE smile).
I would recommend Taquan air tours without question. A flight with them will definitely be a highlight of your Alaskan vacation.

Bruce D. - Canada

Float Plane through the misty fjords

What a super experience! Our Pilot Larry Conrad, really made the trip exciting as he related all the history as flew through the fjords. Climbing up past snow-capped mountain tops, looking down into the valleys, simple amazing.
We landed on the water in a sort of lagoon, to get out, stand on the floats and take in the view and clean crisp air.

Ranjit1945 - India
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