Springtime! And, welcome, Crista!

Crista giving me a scratch

Crista giving me a scratch

Hey, everybody!

We’ve had a very mild winter here on the lake. While our friends on the East coast received more than their share of snow, we’ve gotten practically none in our mountains. The flowers are all about three weeks’ ahead of schedule, and thoughts of flying are in the air!

We have a new team member here at Seattle Seaplanes! Her name is Crista, and she’s helping us out in the office. I like having a new person around to give me treats, ear scratches, outside excursions…. Oh, wait! I meant “greet our customers, check them in for their flights, answer email questions…” You know :-)

Crista has seafaring blood in her veins: she lives on a boat here in Seattle with her beau, and she comes from Cape Cod out in Massachusetts. She’s learning the ways of the seaplane here.

So, now’s a great time to stop by to see us here on the lake, and to take one of our flights! See how green the Emerald City is *this* year. And say Hi to Crista!

–Toby James

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Yvette’s on a Roll (really!) (and GO, HAWKS!)

Yvettte ASEL

Hi, everyone!

I have exciting news — my friend Yvette now has new letters after her name!  She recently traveled to California to hang out with her aunt, who happens to be a CFI and accomplished aerobatic pilot.  Yvette earned the letters ASEL, to add to her ASES on her pilot qualifications!

And, because her aunt is an aerobatic pilot, Yvette got to do all kinds of cool stuff like loops, rolls, and spins!

Yvette roll

Better to learn about what’s going on before you get in the airplane to do it!

So, I’m just so very proud of her…. and can’t wait for her to come back to Seattle to tell me all about it!

Meanwhile, there’s a little football game going on, on Sunday Feb 1.  Some of you might have heard about it….  Yvette and Toby 12


GO HAWKS!!!!   And way to go, Yvette!!


Toby James




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Yvette’s a Private Pilot!

yvette checkride

Hey, Everybody!

My friend Yvette just passed her Private Pilot Checkride!  YAHOO!!

Every checkride here is special, but this one is even more so.  Yvette started training with us a couple of years ago, and for the last year or so, she’s been working here in addition to training here. She’s an integral part of our Seattle Seaplane family, and I just couldn’t be more proud!

Yvette was even featured in the most recent issue of the Seaplane Pilots Association’s magazine, “Water Flying.”  She wrote her story for the magazine, about going to southeast Alaska, taking her first floatplane flight, and immediately falling in love with seaplanes.  Today, she’s a licensed pilot, certified to fly Single Engine Seaplanes.  Wow!

There are very few pilots who earn their initial private certificate in a seaplane.  And we here at Seattle Seaplanes are one of the very few places in the world where you can do it. Yvette saw it through from start to finish, smiling all the way.

And, what’s even more special: Yvette joins the ranks of female licensed pilots.  Of roughly 600,000 pilots in the USA, only about 40,000 are women.  Now there are 40,001.  :-)

When you’re in Seattle, stop by our place to congratulate Yvette! We are all very, very proud of her.


Toby James



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Springtime, and new ASES pilot!

Pete and his CFI, James. I'm happy for them!

Pete and his CFI, James. I’m happy for them!

Hey, everyone!

Well, spring is definitely on its way to us here in Seattle. The daffodils are blooming, the cherry trees are blossoming, the geese are honking….. yep, springtime is coming!

We have a newly-rated ASES pilot!  His name is Pete, and he just wrapped up his checkride. Pete lives all the way out in Dutch Harbor, Alaska, which is a long way away. It was fun to show him some “bush flying” in the middle of the city!

Come see us – come fly with us!  Or, come get a gift certificate for a loved one: it’s never too early to start planning for graduations, Mothers Day, Fathers Day…..  let’s do this!


–Toby James

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Come see us at the show!


Look for our Seattle Seaplanes banner... and this red sign!

Look for our Seattle Seaplanes banner… and this red sign!

Greetings, everyone,

I’ve finally caught my breath after the exciting time of the Super Bowl. I’ll bet you already know this, but I’ll say it again: The Seattle Seahawks are the Super Bowl Champions!!

Ahem. Back to flying….

So, it’s also one of my favorite times of the year: it’s time for the Northwest Aviation Conference and Trade Show! We’ll be there as always, in booth #630. We have chocolate!

We also have a special offer for you, if you’re a pilot who has been “kicking the tires” on getting an ASES rating. We’re knocking 10% off our usual rate of $260/hr, if you sign up at the show, and start your training by June 30, 2014. A great deal!

Alas, the trade show has a rule: No Dogs. :-( So, I won’t be there… except in spirit.

So, stop by the booth to see us!


-Toby James

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I pick the winner of the Super Bowl!

Hey, Everybody!

Greetings from the home of the 12th Man**, Seattle, Washington.

They asked me to predict who would win Super Bowl XLVIII. Both worthy teams, the #1 defense of the Seahawks (can I get a “LEGION OF BOOM?!”) vs. the #1 offense of the Broncos, with the legendary Peyton Manning at QB. It’s going to be quite a game!!

So, who’s going to win?!  Click here to find out!



-Toby James


**(with a tip of the hat to Texas A&M University, who also celebrates a proud 12th Man tradition)

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Happy New Year, Happy New ASES Pilot, Happy Playoffs!

Happy New Year!

Seattle Seahawks - home of the 12th Man! (or Dog)

Seattle Seahawks – home of the 12th Man! (or Dog)

We’ve had a busy winter so far here at Seattle Seaplanes. Even though the weather doesn’t always cooperate, we have been able to fly most days, and it’s been beautiful!

In mid-December, my friend Jim got his ASES rating with us. He flew with our instructor James, and they had a great time. Jim told us something funny – he said he was going to save all his receipts from his training, put them under glass on a coffee table, and then tell his friends about his “several-thousand-dollar-coffee-table.” Ha! (Hey, it does cost something to get your ASES rating, but it’s also plenty rewarding, so don’t let cost slow you down!)

My friend Jim - is that a cookie in his hand?

My friend Jim – is that a cookie in his hand?

We’re very excited here at Seattle Seaplanes about our hometown Seattle Seahawks! They had a great regular season, going 13-3, and wrapping up a first-round bye and home field advantage for the playoffs! The road to the Super Bowl officially goes through Seattle, yay! (but my friend Kit is worried that she’ll have a major conflict on Feb 2, if her beloved Denver Broncos and her hometown Hawks meet in the big game! Time will tell….)

So, Happy New Year! Why not make a resolution to come fly with us in 2014? And, Go Hawks! #12thman

Toby James

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Happy Holidays, and congrats to two new ASES pilots!

Matt from Michigan

Matt from Michigan

Hey, everybody! Happy Holidays!  We all enjoyed our US Thanksgiving recently, and then had a bunch of fun flying with a couple of cool guys: Brennin, and Matt.   They both came to Seattle Seaplanes to earn their ASES ratings, and we all had a good time! Matt came to us from Michigan, where he gets to watch seaplanes take off and land on some of the small lakes near his house.  He was out here to visit family on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, and decided it would be a great time to earn his float rating.  We sure had fun!  

My Navy pal Brinnen

My pal Brennin

Brennin also has a military connection, except in his case, he’s actually flying F18s!  A little different from our Cessna 172, but he assured me that it’s all just as fun (even if he’s going only 70 knots, instead of 300!) You can come fly with us too – whether you have a connection to the military or are a civilian (like me)  Flights, be they lessons or scenic flights or dinner flights, make great presents — and it’s that time of year!  Just contact us for details. Happy Holidays, everyone!  May your days be merry and bright. Cheers,–Toby James

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Happy Autumn!

The Tobes and The Brides

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve had a chance to update my blog….. I’ve been a busy dog!

I just had to share some happy news with you, though. My friends Kit and Nancy got married recently, and I got to be there! My
“little brother” Oliver and my “mom and dad” were there, too. (so were some other dogs, and I wasn’t so happy about that, but I kept it civil, for Kit and Nancy’s sake!)

"Mom and Oliver"

“Mom and Oliver”


Kit and Nancy are longtime partners, and thanks to a law passed last year in our home state of Washington, they were able to wed legally. Kit’s one of our pilots here at Seattle Seaplanes, and Nancy is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Washington Information School.

It was a beautiful fall day up in the Cascade mountains, and lots of people from near and far were there. I even saw my friend Nicole from the Netherlands!

I got to show off my tricks to my new friends, too. Everywhere I went, it seemed people were saying “is this the famous Toby James?”

Come see us down here on Lake Union! And congrats to Kit and Nancy!

Toby James

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Dog Days of Summer….

Summer 2013 089

Hey, everybody,


Can you believe that summer’s almost over?  (well, except if you’re south of the Equator, of course)  We hope you’ve been having a good one, and that you’re also ready for the change in seasons.

We’ve had a great summer here — made lots of new friends, and greeted old friends, too.  I just wanted to take a moment to say Thanks to everyone who visited us this year!


Come see us! Come fly with us!


–Toby James

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