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Alaska: The Final Frontier. Ketchikan, AK is the first port of Alaska Ketchikan is located on the Southeast region of Alaska and is the first major port that all cruise liners visit The main economic drive of Ketchikan, AK is the cruise lines

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Alaska: The Final Frontier

  • Ketchikan, AK is the first port of Alaska
  • Ketchikan is located on the Southeast region of Alaska and is the first major port that all cruise liners visit
  • The main economic drive of Ketchikan, AK is the cruise lines
  • On a daily basis Ketchikan will see up to 5 different cruise lines docking in the harbor for up to 5 hours for each ship
  • Ketchikan, AK is considered the salmon capitol of the world
  • Ketchikan, AK is located directly in the middle of the tongass narrows on an island called Revillagigedo. The locals refer to the island as Revilla.
  • The island of Revillagigedo is located in the middle of the 6th largest rainforest in the world and the rainforest is serviced by the forest service.
  • The Tongass National forest is the largest national forest in the United States with 17.3 million acres of land
southeast exposure
Southeast Exposure
  • Southeast exposure has been a family own and operated business since 1986.
  • The company started exclusively as a kayaking tour company directly located in the town of Ketchikan
  • Since then it has grown to offer kayak, zip line, biking, and boatman tours for most of the cruise lines that port in Ketchikan for the day. The company also offers tours independently through their website and dock representative
  • The company has also relocated to a more primitive area north of the city to be able to accommodate space for our zip line tours
  • Jared Gross and Betsey Burdett have been the primary owners and operators through the entire existence of Southeast Exposure
kayaking southeast exposure style
Kayaking, Southeast Exposure Style
  • The company offers two kayak tour
    • Eagle Island
    • The Tatoosh Island
  • Eagle Island
    • A three hour tour
        • Map :,-131.807013&spn=0.029179,0.048494&z=14&source=embed
    • The Eagle Island tour is great for novice kayakers since the majority of our fleet are double kayaks it’s very easy for a novice kayaker to acquire the skill quickly
    • All of our kayak tours are guided with two guides and travelled as a group of up to 12 through Clover Passage
kayaking cont
Kayaking Cont.
  • The Tatoosh Islands tour
    • My personal favorite tour
    • Tatoosh in the native language means the protectors
      • Natives use to travel in canoes through the island of southeast Alaska. When winds picked up heavily from the southeast, Natives found the Tatoosh as a shield from the winds. This is where the Natives took refuge during harsh storms.
    • This is a 4 hour tour
      • Map:
      • You are driven by boat to a remote beach where you are given your equipment and paddle talk. From there you enter the heart of the Tatoosh and explore the wilderness associated with the Tongass in Southeast, Ak.
tongass national forest
Tongass National Forest
  • The largest National forest in the United States estimated at 17.3 million acres. About the same size as Indiana
  • In Southeast Alaska the forest is made up primarily of Hemlocks (about 75 percent of the forest are hemlocks), Sitka Spruce Pines, Red and Yellow Cedars.
  • The Red Cedar is a unique characteristic of the forest in Ketchikan’s area of southeast Alaska. They are a temperate tree that only exists about 50 miles north of Revillagigedo. It is theorized that the environment is too cold for the Red Cedar to survive. The Red Cedars are by far the largest trees in our forest. The eagle’s nest portion of our zip line tour is made up primarily of Red Cedars.
wildlife associated with sea kayaking
Wildlife Associated with Sea Kayaking
  • Sea Stars
  • Bald Eagles
  • Harbor Seals
  • Sea Lions
  • Humback Whales
  • Orca Whales
sea stars
Sea Stars
  • Sea stars are the biggest Intertidal Wildlife Predator
  • They feed off the barnacles, oysters, and mussels associated with the ocean floor.
  • Two stomachs are found in the shell of sea stars.
    • One that does all of its digesting
    • One that projects out of it underside; envelope itself around the shellfish; suck the shellfish off the rock; and send the nutrients to it’s digestive stomach.
  • 4 species of sea stars are found in the waters of southeast Alaska. Orca as pictured here (although different colors still the same species
bald eagles
Bald Eagles
  • Bald Eagles mate for life
  • The eagle will live for about 20 years in the wild; for about 50 years in captivity
  • Very territorial animals are the bald eagles. The eagle will be territorial for about a 1/2mile radius.
  • The eagle will come back to the same nest year in and year out.
  • They migrate for the winter inland away from the harsh winds, reaching sometimes 80 mph in Clover Passage during the cold season.
  • Bald Eagles are immature until the age of 3-5
    • You can tell the immature from the matures by their color. Immatures are all black while mature eagles have their bald heads and white tails
  • Eagles share a mutual relationship while eaglets are occupying the nest. One will stay at the nest while the other will hunt for food, or both of the eagles will be at the nest.
pacific harbor seals
Pacific Harbor Seals
  • Harbor Seals live to about 25 to 30 years old. They range from about 5 to six feet and are 300 pounds
  • They spend their lives half the time in the water and half the time on land.
  • They can hold their breath for about 40 minutes and can dive 1,500 feet. Although they prefer shallow dives that last no more than 7 mintues
  • Harbor Seals will come up to the surface of the water for air and will curiously watch humans on the beach or kayak. While on land, they do not like to be disturbed and will sometimes abandon their territory or pups if they feel invaded by humans
stellar sea lion
Stellar Sea Lion
  • Stellar Sea Lions are the most aggressive marine wildlife mammal that we encounter during our tours. The mammals will come up and hiss at the kayaks life camels spitting.
  • Males are about 11 feet long and weigh up to 2,500 pounds while females are quite smaller weighing in at 9 feet long and up to 1,000 pounds
  • Unfortunately the population of sea lions has declined 80% in the last 30 years. They are currently on the Endangered Species List and cannot be hunted, harmed, or harrassed
humpback whales
Humpback Whales
  • Humpback whales will migrate about 16,000 miles a year
  • They range from 29-50 feet long and can weigh up to 29,000 lbs
  • The whale will only feed in polar waters or waters associated with the Gulf of Alaska in the summer time and then migrate to tropical waters associated with Hawaii in the winter to birth their young
  • During the winter months humpback will fast and live off their lipid reserves
  • In the summers they will feed around our waters off of krill and other small fish
orca whales
Orca Whales
  • The Killer Whale, as they are the largest predators of the sea in southeast Alaska
  • They feed off other mammals such as sea lions, seals, walruses, and even larger whales
  • They travel as a pod and are very social mammals. Their advanced hunting techniques have been studied by humans for years and are considered highly skilled techniques.
  • They are not considered a threat to humans and only been heard to become aggressive towards us in marine theme parks
zip line southeast exposure
Zip Line Southeast Exposure
  • Our zip line tours lasts a duration of 3 hours
  • The tour consists of 9 different lines (three different loops or sections make up the 9 lines). We offer the sitka road loop, the chinook loop, and the ocean loop.
  • Along with the 9 zip lines we offer an adventure park that has 3 different elements (berma loops, bossan chairs, and the suspension log). The adventure park is optional to all guests.
  • Our grand finale loop, ocean loop, offers a line going out to a platform located in the water and then you zip back to the group
my role as guide
My Role as guide
  • I guided both the zip line and kayaking tours.
  • My main role as guide to our guests is to ensure their safety at all points in time during the tour. I must constantly be observing the environment around me, especially kayaking, in order to ensure the safety of my guests in the water. I must also make sure that I provide my guests with a proper safety briefing at the beginning of the tour in order to instill this belief in each one of my guests
  • After I ensure them that I am a competent and safe guide I believe that I give each one of my guests peace of mine to travel comfortably through the tour
  • Once the tour has begun, I must always be interpretive and accommodating in order to give each guest a unique experience
what i have learned
What I have learned
  • I have learned that the University, through its AOP curriculum, and my NOLS experience have equipped me with the tools and skills I need to be a risk management safe guide.
  • I have also been fortunate enough to have some captive mentors who have shown me the best way for me, as a guide, to be interpretative to my guests so they may always receive a memorable learning experience no matter what the crowd.
  • I have learned that I want to continue my pursuit as a professional expedition kayaking guide and show people the wonders of the wilderness surrounding the area we are touring.