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

FLOAT PLANE SCENIC FLIGHT TO MISTY FJORDS WITH LANDING

This tour was really one of the best I have been on. Chuck (the pilot) was exceptionally friendly and interacted well with the passengers. We flew in an otter de havilland float plane to Rudyard Bay in Misty Fjords. The views were just amazing and the plane was roomy. After landing in the bay, we took a boat back to Ketchikan. This is a must do tour. And I would ask to fly with Chuck again.

ERICLOVESTOTRAVEL - NEW JERSEY

The highlight of an amazing trip!

It was a little disorganized and I was unhappy that they refused to transport my mother’s wheelchair on the bus. However, our pilot was just fantastic!! This should not be missed. The views are just incredible.
I also left a cell phone behind and they retrieved it for me. A+

Luanne S - South Carolina

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

Great Experience

A must do once in your lifetime. Really gives a perspective of the Fjords and the Alaskan Wilderness. Trip logistics were great and Taquan Air was very professional. My wife is afraid of flying in small planes but she really enjoyed it. Especially enjoyed getting out on the pontoons and smelling the fresh Alaskan air and looking out over the water. Pilot was excellent and it was fun flying in the Beaver. Takeoff and landing was very smooth. Narration was excellent and the plane was very well maintained.
The only glitch was that our party had tall people and the seats behind the pilot had less visibility of the horizon due to the lower windows. We had to sit there due to weight balancing and safety. My wife's view in the 3rd row was much better. However, it was still an incredible experience.

dinerdon - Bayville, NJ

Misty Fjord Tour – Great

Tour of Misty Fjord by float plane (arranged through the cruise ship). Arrived at facility, received a safety briefing from the pilot. Recorded commentary provided on the flight as well as information from the pilot. Landed on a “lake” in the fjord. We were able to step out on the floats for a brief time (10 minutes) for pictures. Then we headed back to Ketchikan. Felt quite safe all of the time. Flight stayed at about 800 feet, good enough to see a flying eagle.

mdcwa - Washington

Great overview of region

This was the first excursion we did in Alaska and I thought it was a great way to start our Alaska experience. Our pilot Harry was great, very interesting and thoughtful for our comfort and safety.

Operationhappytravel - Redondo Beach, CA

Awesome customer service. Great tour!

Flew on a sightseeing and crab dinner combo. The flight was great. Top notch operation. Safety minded. The crab was delicious even though there was less room in the dining hall than there was in the float plane. The bus drive back from the dinner was also a lot a fun as the bus driver, a young lady from Arkansas, was something of a comedian.

Scott A. - Michigan

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

FLOAT PLANE TO SEE BEARS

The bears and Salmon ladder are amazing- nothing like it. The float plane ride was very authentic and our pilot was right out of Northern Exposure. I would absolutely do it again. Our guide to see the bears was dedicated and very knowledgeable.

MICHELLE C

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
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