Seattle Seaplanes

For my next adventure, I headed to Seattle, Washington for a long weekend. And due to my wide variety of activities, I’m going to split it up into three posts.

Part Three: Seattle Seaplanes

During my adventure in Seattle, I wanted to do some seaplane spotting. I knew that there were many seaplane services in the area, but I felt finding a good location was going to be problematic. “Which Sea base would be most spotter-friendly? Along with how are the lighting conditions? And if I manage to find a location, would I have enough focal length to capture the action?” My first attempt was less than desirable. I googled “Seaplane spotting in Seattle” and got a bunch of locations to spot at SEA. Which is the airport code for Seattle-Tacoma Airport. I did come across Seattle Seaplanes on the east side of Union Lake, but they are a smaller operation with few arrivals and departures. Plus, the location was limiting photographically. But on Sunday, I was determined to find some seaplane action. After a brief trip down the rabbit hole, I came across Kenmore Air on the south side of Union Lake. I don’t know why I didn’t find them sooner, being one of the larger operations with tons of arrivals and departures. I managed to find a wonderful location, Goose Beach on the shore next to their sea base. And with my 90D and the 100-400mm Mk2, I had plenty of focal length to capture the aquatic aviation action. From there, I was able to catch the last few moments of landing, then taxiing to the Sea base along with the unloading and loading of passengers. For departing aircraft, the location provided a unique viewpoint to photograph the pushing away from the pier, start-up, and taxiing out for takeoff. Was there about half an hour before noon and the Sun was overhead but was behind me which lit up not only the props of approaching Seaplanes but water splashing from under the pontoons. I vigorously shot there for about 2 hours and took more pictures than the previous two days in Seattle. The time I spent there surpassed my expectations and it would be an understatement to say that I had a blast.

Thanks for looking,


Click on Thumbnails to view larger images.

Gear used:

Canon EOS 90D DSLR

Canon EF 100-400mm F/4.5-5.6L IS II USM

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Check out Part One, Photo Mission: Seattle

Don’t forget about Part Two: Street Photography Around Seattle

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