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This site is about aviation in Washington State. There are a few very interesting things nearby such as in Idaaho and Canada. Enjoy!

Video of turbo prop seaplane landing at Lake Union, Seattle, Washington.

Lake Union, Seattle, WA


The lack of reconizable color in these photos reflects frequent flying conditions around Seattle. It was a heavily overcast day and I wasn't using a polarizing filter on the camera. Polarized lenses make a dramatic difference in photography and eyeglasses around Seattle.



This Twin DeHavilland Otter on floats used to be based at Lake Union Air which went out of business several years ago. Kenmore Air Harbor bought most of their Beavers, but this Twin Otter is no longer based in Seattle. Service to the islands and Canada is now provided from this same location by Kenmore Air Harbor. Every morning and evening during the summer a fleet of seaplanes departs the Seattle area to deliver and return tourists to and from the San Juan Islands, Vancouver Island (Victoria, B.C.) and lots of sites north of Seattle.

In the background is the old Kurtzer Seaplane base building that was torn down not too long after this picture was taken. Kurtzer himself died about the time this picture was made. Pictures of this building along with his original biplane seaplanes can be found in aviation history books. Kurtzer owned all kinds of planes including biplanes and more recently a Piper Cherokee Six, Cessnas, Taylorcraft, and a Grumman Widgeon. He gave lessons in the T-craft and the Cessna 180. He kept 4 or 5 T-craft stacked in this building to use for replacements and parts.

In its heyday, I've seen T-Craft, Aeroncas, a Stinson Stationwagon, Cessnas, Widgeons, Lake Amphibs and a Seabee or two on this site. It's all gone now and there are no longer any seaplanes permanently based on these two sites at Lake Union.

My daughter and I flew in this Beaver to Victoria, B.C., about 60 miles from Lake Union. This is a great flight and Victoria is a tourist Mecca for people visiting the Seattle area.
The view as we started the takeoff run in the middle of Lake Union. Aeronautical charts show a nominal 10,000 ft runway down the length of Lake Union. Believe it or not, the middle of this picture includes the Space Needle.
I'm not sure, but I believe that this twin Otter is part of a regularly scheduled service between Vancouver, B.C. (on the mainland) and Victoria as well as several other locations on Vancouver Island. Vancouver Island is huge being several hundred miles long.


1946 Stinson owned and operated by Seattle Seaplanes. They also operate a Cessna 206 on floats. They give instructions and charters in both planes.



View towards the tail of the Beaver on final for Lake Union. The route of choice for seaplanes from Lake Washington (occasionally) and almost always from Lake Union is along the canal especially when weather is a factor. That's the Aurora (Highway 99) Bridge coming off of Queen Anne hill. This is where the movie "Sleepless in Seattle" took place.



Just before touchdown on Lake Union. On the fourth of July, this lake fills up with boaters who will be watching the fireworks. There are normally fireworks launched from the park at the north end of this lake and simultaneously from the waterfront at Elliot Bay. Both displays can be seen from the south end of this lake. The boats are so thick that you could probably walk across the lake going from boat to boat.

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