Running a Small-Ship Alaska Charter Business

| February 6, 2009

We get a first-person account of what it is like to live in Alaska and operate a small charter boat for tourists to explore the wildlife.

Alaska is synonymous with wilderness and adventure, as in "the Last Frontier." When I ponder Alaska I'm drawn to the wildlife and scenery that is so prevalent on the Discovery Channel or PBS programs that show a vast beautiful wilderness area with bears feeding on spawning salmon that choke the streams of Alaska, and whales swimming in the crystal clear waters.

An area teaming with eagles and wildlife surrounded by a backdrop of mountains, waterfalls, forests, glaciers and streams. This is the real Alaska that I believe most people have come to expect, "God's Country" with little or no influence by man's presence.

The Tongass National Forest, which comprises almost 97% of the landmass of Southeast Alaska, is the crown jewel of the national forest system. It is the heart of the world's last, large, temperate rainforest; a place where large stands of old growth trees, brown bears, eagles, and wild salmon still thrive.

Because the Tongass National Forest is a designated "wilderness area," it is limited to groups of no more than 12 people so the impact on the environment is minimal.

The best way to see Alaska "up close and personal" is with one of the small charter yacht tour companies, which provide a much more intimate experience.

Vacation in Alaska

An Alaska wilderness voyage can take you closer to the shore, cruise into smaller inlets, and give you an authentic nature experience. Black and brown bears, humpback whales, orca whales, sea otters, porpoises, sea lions, eagles and deer are frequent encounters on a small boat Alaska adventure cruise.

On most of the smaller vessels you can catch a salmon or halibut. Set shrimp and crab pots, go kayaking and hike a bear trail, and really see and experience all Alaska has to offer.

Small-boat cruising in Alaska's Inside Passage makes this fluid wilderness accessible to a wide range of travelers who neither have their own boats nor are interested in the distant kind of touring to which the large cruise ships are restricted.

While encouraging exploration of remote areas and intimate exposure to wildlife and scenic variety, these charters offer a lot of comfort. Most offer private staterooms, dining and main salons, fully stocked galleys and spacious decks for sightseeing and fishing. These are but a few of the luxuries you can expect on an Alaska small boat adventure cruise.

Continue Article >> Running a Small Ship Charter Business (Part 2)

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