Meet Your Captain & Guide

Explore Alaska Charters is owned an operated by Rick Collins. Rick was born in Ketchikan, Alaska in 1968. As a young boy, Rick spent numerous days fishing, boating, and camping with his family. His father, Dale Collins (a Marine Pilot who navigates cruise ships through Southeast Alaska’s Inside Passage) took great pride in teaching Rick how to safely operate boats. It was in his childhood that Rick developed his passion for boating and fishing.

After graduating from high school Rick went to college at Western Washington University where he earned a B.S. in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. After graduating from Western, Rick enrolled at Eastern Washington University where he earned a B.A. in Biology Education. During his college years, Rick returned to Ketchikan every summer to commercial fish for salmon, halibut, and black cod. Fishing provided money for tuition, and a great deal of experience. This experience aided Rick in obtaining his USCG 100 Gross Ton Masters License.Rick and Max in Ketchikan, Alaska

After college, Rick returned home to Ketchikan and took a job teaching (his other passion) biology, maritime, and coaching wrestling at Ketchikan High School. Maritime is a vocational course on seamanship, marine safety, and navigation. Rick takes his students on many field trips aboard the school’s 45′ training vessel Jack Cotant.

Before creating Explore Alaska Charters, Rick spent summers running 50 and 90 passenger tour vessels to the nearby Misty Fjords National Monument. Explore Alaska Charters was a natural fit, considering Rick spent all of his free time boating and fishing with his friends and family. Rick enjoyed visiting with tourists while navigating tour vessels, but he missed fishing. Now Rick enjoys the conversations with his customers, the resulting friendships, the challenge of hooking the big fish, as well as sharing in the excitement when his clients fight and land a big king salmon. Rick, Bonnie, Max, and Andy Collins

Rick truly enjoys the best of both worlds! During the winter months he is able to teach and coach the wonderful students at Ketchikan High School. When the days are long and the fish are numerous, Rick is able to take people fishing and boating for a living.

Rick still spends his off time boating and fishing with his wife, Bonnie, sons Max and Andy, and the family’s many friends.

Join Rick for an exciting day of guided fishing in Ketchikan.