The Zodiac Experience

Introducing Sounder: The Ultimate Zodiac-Style Boat for Whale Watching Adventures in the Salish Sea

     We are thrilled with our new vessel, Sounder! Crafted with precision by Rozema Boat Works in Bayview, Washington, Sounder is not just any ordinary vessel; she is a 38 foot, 17-passenger RHIB (rigid-hull inflatable boat), affectionately known as a zodiac-style boat. But what sets Sounder apart from the rest? Let’s dive into the details.

Crafted for Adventure

     Zodiac-style boats have long been revered for their versatility and reliability, making them a favorite among adventurers and maritime enthusiasts alike. Their unique design, featuring a rigid hull and inflatable tubes, offers unmatched stability and maneuverability, allowing for smooth rides even in choppy waters. A rigid-hull inflatable boat (RHIB) combines the stability of a rigid hull with the buoyancy of inflatable tubes. The rigid hull, typically made of fiberglass or aluminum, provides structural integrity and durability, ensuring the boat maintains its shape and stability even in rough waters. On the other hand, the inflatable tubes, usually made of reinforced PVC or Hypalon, encircle the perimeter of the boat. These tubes enhance buoyancy, making the vessel virtually unsinkable and providing additional stability, particularly in choppy conditions. The combination of a rigid hull and inflatable tubes results in a versatile and reliable watercraft suitable for various applications, including rescue missions, military operations, and recreational activities like diving and exploration.

     Sounder embodies these qualities to the fullest, ensuring that every journey is a seamless blend of excitement and comfort.

Power and Performance

     Equipped with two Suzuki DF300b outboard engines, Sounder is a powerhouse on the water. These engines strike a delicate balance between raw power and finesse, ensuring that every journey is both exhilarating and safe. What’s more, at lower speeds, these engines operate so quietly that they become nearly imperceptible, allowing you to immerse yourself fully in the tranquil beauty of the Salish Sea.

Speed and Range

     Sounder is not just about leisurely cruises; she’s built for speed to get our guests to the whales faster, and increase our range. With a staggering 600 horsepower at her disposal, she can reach a top speed of 55 mph! This impressive speed expands our geographic reach, allowing us to cover up to 120 miles during our tours if we need to. What does this mean for you? It means much better chances to encounter majestic whales and mesmerizing wildlife, and less time spent getting there. In 2023, we saw whales on 215 out of 219 tours, in large part due to Sounders speed, to get us to the whales wherever they are! With Sounder, every moment counts, ensuring that you make the most of your whale watching adventure.

Comfort at Sea

     Sounder is designed with your comfort in mind from bow to stern. Sounder offers ample storage space to stow your belongings securely during the excursion. From cameras and binoculars to snacks and personal items, our well-designed storage compartments keep everything organized and easily accessible, allowing you to focus on the breathtaking sights and sounds of the Salish Sea.

     We understand that nature calls, even in the midst of an exciting whale watching excursion. That’s why we’ve equipped Sounder with a relatively spacious and comfortable bathroom. Say goodbye to cramped quarters and hello to convenience and peace of mind. Now, you can fully enjoy your adventure without any unnecessary interruptions.


Join Us Aboard Sounder

     Whether you’re a seasoned whale watching enthusiast or embarking on your first adventure, Sounder promises an experience like no other. With her unparalleled performance, comfort, and versatility, she is the ultimate companion for exploring the wonders of the Salish Sea. Join us aboard Sounder and let the adventure begin!

     We are beyond excited to have brought Sounder to the Salish Sea. Book your adventure today and embark on a journey you’ll never forget