Reviews by Excursion

Stalking Salmon

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Amazing day with Geoff and Grace

  • Dietz_Family2018
  • 2018-08-18
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Ohio

We booked a 6 hour charter with Baranoff to include the “cook your catch” option at the campground. We had extremely high expectations and our father and daughter crew of Geoff and Grace delivered an above and beyond experience. The boat was brand new and was perfect for our family of six. Geoff is clearly the real deal of charter fishing captains - having professionally sport fished in Hawaii, Alaska and many other places around the world. He knew exactly where to take us and what sort of help was needed for us amateurs. We can’t imagine how there could be anyone better in the business. Having Grace on board as the first mate was awesome. She handled her role like a seasoned veteran at the ripe old age of 12. Her predictions on the crab pots were also right on - plenty of crab and even a few keepers that were delicious! Having our girls (9,7 and almost 5) get a chance to learn from her was an added and unexpected bonus. The skills and work ethic she’s learning will clearly take her far, wherever she wants to go in life. Within just a few minutes our whole group had brought great keepers on board, rockfish, silver salmon, yellow eye...and of course one monster ling cod that got away...which will be family legend for years to come. The team at camp who prepared the fish and crabs did an awesome job. The whole day was one of the top highlights to our 15 days in the Pacific Northwest. Thank you to Geoff and Grace!

We had the greatest experience

  • Scott S
  • 2018-08-17
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Colorado

We had a fantastic experience with Baranof and our captain Matt Carlson. He was incredible. We caught a bunch of fish including red snapper, salmon and rock fish. The meal that was cooked at camp was awesome and they flash froze and shipped the rest of our fish back home. We would go out with Matt again in a heart beat. A true professional and he is Alaska through and through.

Fantastic Time with Geoff and Grace!!!

  • Tpackard21
  • 2018-08-15
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Colorado

Took a fishing trip with Baranof for while in Ketchikan for the day on a cruise. Had an amazing time with Geoff and Grace fishing on their 30' boat. It was extremely comfortable and easy to fish from. Salmon fishing had been slow so Geoff recommended fishing the bottom and we did great! An excellent day and a real pleasure to be with our guide and deck hand. Sure to do this again.

Best AK cruise “excursion” yet!

  • kmartinusa
  • 2018-08-11
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Oclahoma

We have been on three Alaskan cruises, our first was just my immediate family, my bride and two kids about six or seven years ago. On our first trip I became convinced that everyone should do this at least once, the experience is indescribable, pictures or television or writing about the magnificence of the place will never adequately convey what is there to see and do. The kids were never crazy about a cruise to AK, probably because we spent our time seeing, not doing. We adults are stunned just looking at brown bears feeding in a river or stream or shoreside. We are happy to see the mountains, glaciers, the wonder of God’s creation, but the kids want to climb the mountains, slide down the glaciers and swing from the trees so they would often rather STAY ON THE SHIP AND PLAY BASKETBALL OR VIDEO GAMES or whatever kids do in the kids club on NCL. While surprising, probably understandable if one can manage to try to get into the heads of kids. They want to DO stuff, not LOOK AT stuff. Our trip with Baranof did both, although the kids are older now they still want to DO STUFF. Cool stuff. With cool people. I’m a pretty experienced and knowledgeable fisherman, mostly the gulf coasts of Texas, Loud and Florida but as the song goes...”I’ve been everywhere, man..”. Not fishing in AK though. And although I find a rushed fishing trip off of a cruise ship...well, I’ll just say I’d prefer to fly in and stay a couple of weeks, book with an outfitter and get after it, learn all I can and as my bride might say, get too serious about this. Our trip included 15 from our extended family. On our first cruise to AK, as we were steadily pointed north through Puget Sound I resolved to make sure my parents went with us someday. We finally completed this mission, My mom was on this trip. I booked with Baranof with a unique request. Mom’s side of our family can trace our roots to ancestors who were recipients of a land grant issued by the Provisional Gov’t of the Republican Texas, so roots and traditions run deep. Among her most cherished memories are days as a child spent crabbing with her dad, mom, brothers and sisters along the Texas Gulf Coast so I wanted to arrange a special trip for her...crabbing for Dungeness crabs in Alaska with her grandchildren. Baranof is a fishing outfitter but I took a shot and called. “No problem, we’d be happy to”. We started our trip, were met by three guides, my boat was captained and served by Chris Baldwin. Being a good fishing guide is a really unique and tricky job...they never know who they’re dealing with, could be novices, perhaps someone with ridiculous expectations, maybe rude or disrespectful people, maybe guests who don’t speak English, might even be a Russian billionaire (yes, he did that) and sometimes fish just aren’t biting. Or maybe they are...maybe guests just can’t set the hook, maybe weather doesn’t cooperate...the list is endless and often the captain gets the blame...or credit. Chris was a spectacular host, patient and fun with the kids (teens on our boat), knowledgeable and willing to answer my constant questions, I wanted to soak up as much as I could as this was my first fishing trip in AK; he is patient, fun, funny, interesting, eager. Chris is also enthusiastic, efficient and contributed to a unanimously agreed “best thing we did” on our cruise to AK. Once all three boats were loaded up with 15 people from 8-75yrs old, all outfitted in provided gear, boots, jackets and pants we were off. Dropped crab traps and went fishing. We caught countless rockfish, other fish I can’t remember the names of. Once adequately stocked for lunch, we had a little time so we trolled for salmon, caught several and finished by running traps that had only soaked for 3hrs or so. I’m positive that the collective excitement on our boat when pulling these traps, kind of mundane and routine for Chris took him completely by surprise. Kids messed with the crabs, took pictures and we threw back undersized. Chris told a story of once dropping a go-pro camera with a trap, documenting that crabs are turds. (My words). They will defend their trap, fight and even kill each other defending the bait that they’ve found. (I’m fully aware of the dynamics here...no lectures necessary). I found that interesting and a little funny. We returned to dock, Chris cleaned our catch and joined us for lunch in a back room of the restaurant right there at the dock. We were served by an extraordinarily talented chef who had taken time away from an upscale restaurant somewhere (I’m embarrassed that I didn’t take note of his name) but Chris said our chef is doing this for fun...he’s doing it because in his “real” job he rarely has a chance to interact with his guests, no time...wherever it is it is busy so he’s in the kitchen most or all of the time. I can’t remember his credentials but he’s not just a “cook”. He is an extraordinarily talented chef with a passion for his craft and loves serving and seeing his delighted guests as he works. He got word that I’ve wanted to try spot prawns for years...a bowl FULL of them appeared in front of me, sautéed and absolutely fantastic! Appetizer was some salmon/shrimp spread that was out of this world. Our fish was fried, broiled, I’m not sure what he did but it was ALL unbelievably good. My bride won’t eat anything fried but asked for seconds on the fried rockfish with just prepared tartar sauce. Best cole slaw I’ve ever eaten. Dessert was huckleberry something...some kind of cake that was out of this world. I cannot document blow-by-blow the other guides but I heard nothing but compliments. Our group of fifteen was beyond satisfied, this experience was the highlight of our trip.

Great time with Luke

  • Kathryn C
  • 2018-09-26
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Colorado

Originally we planned for a Halibut fishing excursion but after some direction from our guide Luke, he recommended we go Silver Salmon fishing as they had been biting much more. We obliged and we are glad we did! We ended up catching 3 silver salmon fish that we ended up having fileted and frozen and sent home to us in Colorado to share with our family and friends. It was a beautiful day on the water, not a cloud in site. The water was pretty smooth and the company was great. The catch was exciting as they all bit at once. From start to finish, it was a great day. They were right there to pick us up from our cruise ship and got us back with an hour to spare before we had to get back on board. Baranof was easy to communicate with, I would definitely fish with them again! Also, fun fact is our guide and I went to the same college- University of North Florida---SWOOP!!

Best Excursion on our cruise to Alaska!

  • SuburbsSteph
  • 2018-09-24
  • Salmon Fishing
  • California

We saw whales, eagles, sea lions. We caught a bunch of fish. Sam was an excellent guide with a lot of great local knowledge. The food was out of this world delicious. I'm not a fan of salmon, but when it is this fresh and cooked this way, it's super yummy. This was our most memorable outing. Thanks Sam!

Nice relaxing day fishing

  • suzwed2
  • 2018-09-17
  • Salmon Fishing
  • N/A

Our party of four wanted to do some fishing while in Alaska on our cruise. Baranof's met us right at the gangway to our ship and escorted us the short walk to their docks. They provided bibs and waders, all the poles, gear and bait - even a nice snack to have on board. We really wanted to catch some salmon, but the salmon weren't biting. We did catch some halibut and cod though. The captain was great about keeping our lines working and giving us tips and moving around to try and find the fish. We enjoyed being out at sea, taking in the scenery and nice weather, and catching what we did. The timetable on our cruise departure had shifted, and he was great about getting us back to the dock in plenty of time to board our ship. When you arrive back at their docks hey hang your fish up on the racks and take your photo by them, so that was fun to have. We did pay to have the fish cleaned and frozen and shipped to us, and everything was just how we wanted it, and the pricing on that was very reasonable. All in all a fun and relaxing day spent in Alaska

Awesome day of Alaskan fishing!

  • Lovewineandfood
  • 2018-08-30
  • Salmon Fishing
  • Canada

We were a group of four (2 couples) – with our two husbands who had fished before. Our 6-hour fishing tour was awesome! We booked with Baranof Excursions by phone before boarding our Princess cruise in Anchorage (Whittier). We had pre-paid using our credit card. On the day our cruise arrived in Ketchikan, Lukas (the captain of our fishing boat) met us at the dock by our cruise ship and we walked the short distance to where the company is based by the dock. We were outfitted with boots (and raincoats – which we declined on the sunny day) and our personal belongings were put into a watertight bag to have on board with us. We also purchased our Alaskan fishing licenses ($25 U.S. per person – via Baranof) at the dock. We all opted to buy a license; although, one could go out and just watch the others fish and not have a license, if you preferred. The day was sunny for us; but, our boat had both a covered area (where we sat while travelling) and an open area (from where we fished). Working part of the year in Alaska and the other part in Florida, Lukas was an expert on all aspects of our tour (operating the boat, showing us how to bait our lines and how to reel in the fish we caught – nine, in total)! We fished both by trolling and by jigging. (The wives learned a lot! Ha ha!) We caught: pink salmon, silver salmon, yellowtail rockfish, ling cod, and yelloweye rockfish. What a perfect day! We boated out quite far (just over an hour) to an area where Lukas believed we would have success; he was right! During the five (or so) hours we were actually out on the boat, Lukas gave each of us a small boxed “lunch” for a snack (crackers, delicious salmon spread, a fruit cup, etc.) We had also brought our own lunch (sandwiches, fruit, drinks) to supplement the one Baranof had provided. He showed us how to “use the facilities” while out on the boat – basically, off the side (as, obviously, there is no bathroom on board). When we returned to the dock, Lukas hung our fish on hooks for a photo opportunity – so we could take our own photos. We also watched as he cleaned our fish for us. Then (this was very cool) – Lukas had us fill out the paperwork to enable some of our fish to be brought on board our Princess ship to be cooked up for us by the ship’s chef (a [free!] service only provided by Princess, not the other cruise lines). We enjoyed eating our “catch” (deliciously prepared and presented by the Princess kitchen) the next day for lunch on the ship (an “at sea” day, for us). The rest of the fish we caught could be shipped home (at our expense); but, we opted to have Baranof prepare and deliver it to the homeless shelter in Ketchikan – a great idea! What a wonderful overall experience – fishing in Alaska, catching nine fish, watching them be cleaned, and then eating them, beautifully prepared, on our cruise ship! Thanks, Lukas (Baranof) and “Princess” for an awesome experience!!