This year was the ninth annual Alaska Airlines Copper River Salmon cook off. What’s that? It is the first time of the season that the very tasty Copper River salmon is flown down from the crisp waters off of Cordova, AK to Seattle. Then, multiple chefs from the region cook up their favorite dishes and the audience of VIPs and MVPs vote their favorite. Even though this event requires me to get up earlier than I would prefer, I look forward to it and it is always worth it. Not only do I get to try some yummy fish, but there are always some good times with planes to be had!
The new Salmon-Thirty-Salmon livery shown off in Anchorage. Image from Alaska Airlines. CLICK FOR LARGER.
One of the best liveries out there was Alaska Airline’s original Salmon-Thirty-Salmon livery on a Boeing 737-400. The airline re-painted the old salmon livery a while back and many have missed it (including me). Have no fear – a new salmon livery is here. This week, Alaska unveiled their Salmon-Thirty-Salmon II livery in Anchorage and it is even better than the first.
The new Salmon-30-Salmon has winglets. Image from Alaska Airlines. CLICK FOR LARGER.
This time, a Boeing 737-800 was used as a larger canvas. The fish-plane comes in at 91,000 pounds and measures at almost 129 feet. Alaska calls this “the most intricately painted commercial aircraft in the world.”
There are not too many differences between the older salmon livery and the newer one. The concept remained the same; to paint a huge salmon on a plane. One of the biggest changes is the fact that the 737-800 has winglets with scales. Also the “Alaska” name is painted in a salmon color versus white of the previous design.
How could you not smile flying such a beautiful plane? Image from Alaska Airlines. CLICK FOR LARGER.
The design used four gallons of Mylar paint to create an iridescent sparkle over the nearly 3500 fish scales. Crews worked 27 days straight in Oklahoma City and used 21 unique colors to get this amazing livery completed.
“Today, we are proud to introduce the largest flying fish to all of Alaska and the world,” said Marilyn Romano, Alaska Airlines’ regional vice president of the state of Alaska. “Not only will this special plane spotlight the best, most sustainable seafood harvest in the world, it will also remind us of the important role the seafood industry has on the Alaska economy. On behalf of the 1,700 Alaska Airlines employees working in the state, we are also proud to safely fly the thousands of men and women who work in the seafood industry throughout the Last Frontier.”
Brandon Farris caught the S7S landing in Seattle.
A big thanks to Brandon for letting me share his photo of the Salmon-30-Salmon landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
The above video highlights the process of painting the Salmon-30-Salmon livery.
In 2005, the airline unveiled the first Salmon-Thirty-Salmon on a Boeing 737-400. That livery was retired and painted over last year. Those who were fans of the fish-themed livery wereÂ disappointedÂ and I know I have been hoping for a second version since.
TheÂ â€œSalmon-Thirty-SalmonÂ IIâ€ will be nine feet longer and will feature salmon colored titles on theÂ fuselage. Also, check out those scales on the winglets — not too shabby. Alaska plans toÂ unveilÂ the new salmon livery sometime this fall.
The first Salmon-Thirty-Salmon livery on a Boeing 737-400. Photo by Andrew Cohen.
â€œThis airplane celebratesÂ AlaskaÂ Airlinesâ€™ unique relationship with the peopleÂ and communities ofÂ AlaskaÂ and underscores our air transport commitment to theÂ stateâ€™s seafood industry,â€ said Marilyn Romano,Â AlaskaÂ Airlinesâ€™ regional viceÂ president of the state ofÂ Alaska. â€œBecause the new design will be featured on aÂ larger 737-800, this 91,000-pound king will boldly promote the worldâ€™s finestÂ seafood from the Hawaiian Islands to Boston and beyond.â€
Speaking of Salmon, Alaska Airlines will beÂ celebratingÂ the first Copper River Salmon delivery with an early morning cook off this Friday. Once again, I will be getting up early to welcome the salmon and enjoy what the cooks are able to create.