Pete Hanke here. My wife Sherri and I have been operating orca whale watching tours with Puget Sound Express for 29 years, and in that time we have always endeavored to make your trip a lasting memory.
In 1981, I started with my dad, Pete Sr., providing week-long sailing adventures in the Pacific Northwest aboard the 80ft schooner, Alcyone. Over the years, we moved from sailboats to powerboats, but always made sure the orca whale watching experience and the vessels were first rate. To that end, we still continue to operate what we feel is the best whale watching company in the Pacific Northwest.
You will often find Sherri in the office answering questions and solving problems. Don’t tell anyone, but she is definitely the brains behind the operation. Although she has threatened many times to get her own ‘Captains License’ she actually prefers the beach to the water and, truth be known, would probably rather be taking her horse out for a spin than a boat. Actually, the funny part of these two is that both Sherri and I grew up on farms driving tractors. How that translates into a orca whale watching business is still being researched.
Besides the two of us, us we are blessed to have 2 adult children working along side, who are actually getting so much time under their belts that they probably do it better than the parents. Sarah, who graduates this year with a degree in Business Management, provides provides a steady hand to the registration and reservation process. She is also celebrating her 10th year caring for folks on the water and is our “lead naturalist.” Christopher, who graduated from college with a degree in Physics Engineering, is heading for his 6th summer behind the wheel on one of the boats. Even the grandparents play active roles ashore and on the water.
So it really is a family whale watch operation, and that aspect alone is something we take pride in, and love to share with you, our customers. So if it is intimate family atmosphere you desire, come aboard and spend a day with us, whale watching in the Pacific Northwest.