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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Gefeliciteerd, nieuwe watervliegtuig piloten!**


Captain Nicole and her instructor, Kit!

Captain Nicole and her instructor, Kit!


My pal Dan!

My pal Dan!

John, Ron, and Kit

John, Ron, and Kit


(**”congratulations, new seaplane pilots,” in case you don’t speak Dutch, or in case Google Translate got it wrong… what do I know, I’m a dog?!)


We’ve sure been busy around here – lots of flights, lots of checkrides!

I’ve made some great new friends, from as far away as Holland, from Kansas City, and also from nearby – southeast King County. It’s been a blast!

My friend Nicole comes from the Netherlands, and when she’s not flying seaplanes, she’s a captain for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. She flies a great big 747-400!  But she says she loves the thrill of going “low and slow” in the seaplane. I had fun playing with her children and husband, too, while she flew.

My pal Dan lives here in the Seattle area, and he visited our booth at the Pacific Northwest Aviation Trade Show last February.  He took us up on our trade show offer of 10% off the ASES rating, and we’re glad he did.  Dan works for the FAA, keeping an eye on towers and obstacles around here for us.  Thank goodness!  Lake Union is a busy place these days, with construction and so forth.

My friend Ron travelled here from Kansas City, flying his very own Piper Malibu with his partner Robin.  Ron, John, and Kit all know each other from NGPA, and it was great to have him here for the float rating training. Ron worked with my best buddy Greg, who was in town for a few weeks – (Greg lives in Florida year-round now, but visits us during the summer to get away from the heat!)

So, you see, you can live here in Seattle or come to us from far away – come fly with us, and get your seaplane rating, too!


Toby James

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Yvette and me

Yvette and me




My pal Anne

My pal Anne






Hey, everybody! 


It’s been a really exciting week around here — we had two student pilots solo on the same day!

First up, Anne.  She and my “dad” went up in the morning, and he pronounced her ready to leave the nest  (well, that’s not what he said, but it’s the same idea!)  She expertly flew the airplane around the west side of Bainbridge Island, and beached it herself at the end of her solo flight.  I’m so proud of her!


And, then in the afternoon, my pal Yvette got to go all by herself around Lake Union!  She claims that the taxi time to the north end of the lake was “the longest 10 minutes of my life.”  Just like a pro, though – she took it around Lake Union all by herself, then taxied up to the dock to greet me.


I’m always so happy when we have happy pilots!  It’s the thrill of a lifetime, the first solo flight.  And to have two of them on one day?  Priceless.

Come fly with us!  And, congrats to my flying gal pals, Anne and Yvette!


–Toby James

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Friends and visitors and “summer camp”

Nate, Kit, John, Steven, and me!

Nate, Kit, John, Steven, and me!


Hey, everybody!

We’re busy as my dad’s honeybees around here these days!  Spring’s sliding into summer, the cruise ships are back in town, and people are starting to think about seaplanes!  It always seems to be more fun when the sun is shining, although we think it’s beautiful any time you go….

We have a new pilot in town!  His name is John, and he’s here for some flying this summer (when he’s not flying his corporate jet, that is.)  John has quite a varied flying career, and I’m glad he’s here.  He’ll be flying here when he can, and he calls it his “summer camp.”  Yay!

Coincidentally, two of John’s friends, who are also friends of my pal Kit, were in town recently:  Steven and Nate.  Steven is the Executive Director of the National Gay Pilots Association (NGPA,)  and Nate is his partner. John and Kit are also members.  It’s a fine organization with lots of outreach – John is here this summer because he met Kit at a NGPA meetup in Palm Springs earlier this year!  If you’d like more information about this fabulous group, click here.

Stop on by to see us this summer – and meet John!





Toby James









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