Kevin Smith and Maureen Gordon

Kevin Smith and Maureen Gordon in the wheelhouse - Photo by Debra Brash, Victoria Times Colonist

This article appeared in the Vancouver Sun and Victoria Times Colonist business sections this week. Thanks, Darron Kloster, for your interest!

By Darron Kloster, Canwest News Service

Tourism in general may be hurting, but niche operators like Kevin Smith and Maureen Gordon are battening down the hatches for another record season.

The owners and skippers of the Maple Leaf — a former longliner turned tourist tall ship — set sail on their first excursion of the season this week into the Gulf Islands and up the coast.

They’re carrying eight passengers on an eco-friendly journey to the Great Bear Rain Forest and another eight on a return trip. It’s a mix of Canadians and Americans who shelled out more than $2,600 Cdn each for the sailing experience, wildlife viewing, cultural exchanges with first nations, fishing and the perennial highlight of listening to whales through on-board stereo via hydrophone.

Read the rest of the article here.