Torn over Ketchikan activities!

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#1
AE
79 Posts
Joined Mar 2012
We will be in Ketchikan on 9/18/14 on the Golden Princess from 7AM-12:30PM.

We are torn over that to do here.

1) Bering Sea Crab Fishermen's Tour - I see this comes highly rated. However, my concerns with this are that it will take up basically our entire time in Ketchikan. Also, it is being sold as an excursion through Princess. How many people does this tour take? I fear it will be jam packed and, therefore, unenjoyable.

2.) Flightseeing tour of Misty Fjords with Michelle at Island Wings. This will only take 2.5 hours and also comes highly recommended. Is MF and a sea plane worth it for $239/pp? Includes a 30 minute stop within MFNM.

3.) Creek Street is something I really want to see, for whatever reason. A walking tour (on our own) is also something that is interesting to us. We are much more of a do-it-yourself excursion type of couple.

For those who have been and experienced any of these, what do you think? I wish we had more time in that town to explore.
#2
Southern California by way of Kentucky
18,912 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
Originally posted by Lammy23
We will be in Ketchikan on 9/18/14 on the Golden Princess from 7AM-12:30PM.

We are torn over that to do here.

1) Bering Sea Crab Fishermen's Tour - I see this comes highly rated. However, my concerns with this are that it will take up basically our entire time in Ketchikan. Also, it is being sold as an excursion through Princess. How many people does this tour take? I fear it will be jam packed and, therefore, unenjoyable.

2.) Flightseeing tour of Misty Fjords with Michelle at Island Wings. This will only take 2.5 hours and also comes highly recommended. Is MF and a sea plane worth it for $239/pp? Includes a 30 minute stop within MFNM.

3.) Creek Street is something I really want to see, for whatever reason. A walking tour (on our own) is also something that is interesting to us. We are much more of a do-it-yourself excursion type of couple.

For those who have been and experienced any of these, what do you think? I wish we had more time in that town to explore.
We did the Bering Sea Crab tour (AMAZING)..we booked (ourself directly with their website) for the first tour of the day and were back approx 11:30am...We were also one of the first onboard easily arriving before the ship booked excursions and had our choice of seats.
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#3
Seattle, WA
1,535 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
My folks don't like crowds, yet they loved the Bering Sea Crab Fisherman tour. It's a ~120-foot-long boat, so it's going to have some room on it.

To some degree, you should decide what you like. I've never done BSCFtour, but I perceive it as "show & tell" - the show is going to be "the same" day after day, and you get to watch it. I perceive Misty Fjords as more natural and "we get to choose what to look at", so that's the kind of thing I'd pick. Of course, YMMV.
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#4
California
184 Posts
Joined May 2010
Our family of 4 privately book a Misty Fjords trout fishing trip. The waders, rods, reels, fishing lures and face netting mask were all provided.

Our pilot flew us near the eye of the needle, over a lake the spilled over granite walls to see stunning scenery. He even try to show us a bear and her club that often visited a mouth of a stream that teemed with 100s pinks.

We caught and released trout in a lake with waterfalls at every turn. When it was time to try another spot our pilot taxied us across the lake while standing outside the plane on the pontoons! We caught fish a each location. When it was time to try another spot we talked our pilot into return us to the stream when the pinks were pool up. It was a thrill catching 4 to 7 lb fish on 2 lb fishing line.

For the flight back to Ketchikan our pilot roll coasted the plane to the delight of our 13 and 15 year old sons. Our youngest son was sitting in the co-pilot chair and under the watchful eyes of our pilot was given the controls of the plane. As we approach Ketchikan the sound of Louie Armstrong "What a Wonder World" play through our earphones. It was one the best shore excursion of our lives.
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#5
2,854 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
I'm in the same situation

The Bering Sea Crab Fisherman tour looks interesting. We are taking our 14 and 12 year old grandchildren and think this might be a super experience for them
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#6
Lakewood, Ca
12,370 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
I'm one of the few who wasn't crazy about the plane ride in Ketchikan. The 30 minute stop was boring and we were swarmed by bugs. YUCK! (The scenery was beautiful, but mostly just green mountains over and over again.)

My friend really like the Bering Sea tour.

I really love just roaming around Ketchikan, so I'm gonna vote for that. It's a cute little town with lots of fun shops.

Good luck deciding.
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#7
Claxton, TN
2,830 Posts
Joined Jun 2006
We did the float plane in Ketchikan in September and it was incredible! We lucked out in that it was a clear and sunny day. That is not typical in September. Listed below is a link to my review that includes pictures of the Misty Fjords.

Lisa
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#8
432 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Originally posted by Lammy23
We will be in Ketchikan on 9/18/14 on the Golden Princess from 7AM-12:30PM.

We are torn over that to do here.

1) Bering Sea Crab Fishermen's Tour - I see this comes highly rated. However, my concerns with this are that it will take up basically our entire time in Ketchikan. Also, it is being sold as an excursion through Princess. How many people does this tour take? I fear it will be jam packed and, therefore, unenjoyable.
The time frame is what it is, so you have to prioritize. It is sold on all the lines, and is one of the more popular excursions. It is also available direct, but I think the price difference was not that great. I don't know the official capacity, but the boat is well laid out and everyone can see and participate. Being a boat, it's capacity is much more regulated than many land venues, so you will not be "jampacked"
2.) Flightseeing tour of Misty Fjords with Michelle at Island Wings. This will only take 2.5 hours and also comes highly recommended. Is MF and a sea plane worth it for $239/pp? Includes a 30 minute stop within MFNM.
We have done flight seeing several times in AK, and just did not think the costs were justified for the scenery here, my opinion of course.

3.) Creek Street is something I really want to see, for whatever reason. A walking tour (on our own) is also something that is interesting to us. We are much more of a do-it-yourself excursion type of couple.
This was my favorite. A unique setting and some interesting, quirky stuff in a few shops

For those who have been and experienced any of these, what do you think? I wish we had more time in that town to explore.
Just pick what interests you the most, and don't fret the other stuff. It is impossible to even scratch the surface on any given trip of such an immense state.
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#9
USA
8,952 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Excursion are so personal...

Kids watched a lot of crabbing on TV, never did it cross our mind to do that excursion regardless of how cool the TV looked.. but that is us.

No brainer that Alaska was about the scenery, for us we took a private fishing charter out of Ketchikan that was both scenic, authentic and caught some fish too.

Second choice for us would be flightseening...

But again just my 2 cents, you will have good memories with either.
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#10
Syracuse, New York
49,840 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by Lammy23
We will be in Ketchikan on 9/18/14 on the Golden Princess from 7AM-12:30PM.

We are torn over that to do here.

1) Bering Sea Crab Fishermen's Tour - I see this comes highly rated. However, my concerns with this are that it will take up basically our entire time in Ketchikan. Also, it is being sold as an excursion through Princess. How many people does this tour take? I fear it will be jam packed and, therefore, unenjoyable.

2.) Flightseeing tour of Misty Fjords with Michelle at Island Wings. This will only take 2.5 hours and also comes highly recommended. Is MF and a sea plane worth it for $239/pp? Includes a 30 minute stop within MFNM.

3.) Creek Street is something I really want to see, for whatever reason. A walking tour (on our own) is also something that is interesting to us. We are much more of a do-it-yourself excursion type of couple.

For those who have been and experienced any of these, what do you think? I wish we had more time in that town to explore.
Creek St is a 30 min or less look, there is no "excursion" to it.

It depends on interests about flying and Misty. Me, I fly it EVERY trip. Others wouldn't ever consider spending the money. It's "worth" is something you are going to have to figure out.

The Crab tours are limited to certain times, if a priority, then make your plans around the entire day schedule. Make choices on the best overall use of time.
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#11
Amarillo, Texas
1,026 Posts
Joined Oct 2007
We did the float plane excursion, and yes, it is what you would call a seaplane. Coming from the flatlands of Texas, my wife and I were overwhelmed with the sights we saw. And landing on the mountain lake was icing on the cake! We were there in mid-July and didn't experience the bug problems earlier reported. If you've never done a flight like this before, you'd be in for a treat and you only live once.

As for Creek Street, YES! Walk it while you're there. It's easy enough to get there. They've got some cute little shops there and at one point you can even walk above a salmon ladder. When we were there, it was raining and had been raining for days. But that only added to the beauty of the place.
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#12
San Diego, CA
9,225 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
We took a fishing trip with Northern Lights Charters and had a great time





And of course, we ended up with a LOT of salmon to ship home

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#13
Aransas Pass, South TX
41 Posts
Joined Sep 2011
Originally posted by sdmike
We took a fishing trip with Northern Lights Charters and had a great time
Sounds like you would recommend them. We only have 3 people, do they accommodate small groups?
#14
Syracuse, New York
49,840 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by LoneStarLori
Sounds like you would recommend them. We only have 3 people, do they accommodate small groups?
My family highly recommends Northern Lights, and have been going out with them many times, more than 10 years.
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#16
New Mexico
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The boat stops at an Indian Eagle Preserve and feeds the eagles and I mean LOTS of eagle. Bring a video camera and capture them in flight just a few yards off the boat. Some examples:

http://www.rogerjett-photography.com/?page_id=529

Seating is arranged like bleachers so all can see. If you have ever seen "Deadliest Catch", this excursion is a must and includes crew members from the TV series.
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#17
Boynton Beach, FL USA
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Joined Jun 2001
When we did our first Alaska cruise, we used Island Wings to go to Traitor's Cove to see the bears catching salmon. Just a wonderful experience. We will be doing our second Alaska cruise in June and also had a difficult time deciding what to do with so many options. I really wanted to do the crab boat, since we love the Deadliest Catch show. But in the end I decided that I should see Misty Fjords with Island Wings. I had a tough time deciding if I would do Misty Fjords or Traitor's Cove six years ago, so now I could finally get there. I just can't pass up an opportunity to see nature at its finest. I can always do the crab tour on another Alaska cruise.
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#18
Houston, Texas, USA
20,611 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
Originally posted by MVPinBoynton
I can always do the crab tour on another Alaska cruise.
Off topic!

Mike, you could switch to June 13th Millennium and help plan our cruise.
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TEXED-N-JACQUIE
#19
Boynton Beach, FL USA
12,809 Posts
Joined Jun 2001
Originally posted by Texed
Off topic!

Mike, you could switch to June 13th Millennium and help plan our cruise.
Well Hi Ed. I would have loved to go on a cruise with you; but we have to visit Glacier Bay and Celebrity can't do it. Sorry, maybe another time. We are pretty booked right now through March 2015; but there is a lot of cruising time after that.
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#20
Long Beach, CA
53 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
I took the crab excursion in June. The boat was very comfortable (I use a mobility scooter) and the owners/employees were terrific.

One important thing I haven't seen mentioned is that there are several times during the presentation when they let you get up and walk around so you can get closer and hold the crabs, etc. They are also very nice to stop and pose for pictures several time during the trip.

I had booked this because my adult son was supposed to be on the trip but couldn't come at the last minute. Rather than cancelling it I took it by myself. I'm so glad that I did.
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