Perhaps more than any other creature, salmon define the Northwest. From a legacy in Native American culture to a role in the development of the Washington Territory, salmon are a vital link to the region's history and the health of its eco-systems and natural environment. To observe salmon spawning in the wild is to watch the wondrous beginnings of life and the final stages of nature's cycle. The best time to view spawning salmon is mid October through November and a few days after a big rain. The Kitsap Salmon Tours is going virtual this year, therefore there will be no docents out stream side. Instead there will be a free online Kitsap Salmon Webinar Series open to all who want to learn more about the iconic Pacific Northwest Salmon. See more info below.
• Approach a stream slowly and stand quietly at the edge. If you move quickly salmon may assume you are a predator.
• Look for a "tail out" pool where gravel is about an inch in diameter.
• Observe females scooping out a depression in the gravel while one or more larger males fight for position.
• Wear polarized sunglasses to cut down on glare.
• Stay out of the stream to avoid damaging salmon eggs.
• Maintain control of pets, which have been known to kill spawning salmon.
• Be respectful of private property by staying next to roads or on public property.
• Stay on trails where they exist. Never trample streamside vegetation.
• Don't mourn for dead salmon or worry about carcasses in the stream. Decaying salmon release nutrients that become a critical part of the food chain.
• Practice Social Distance during stream side observations.
For salmon stream side viewing be sure to give them space! It is tempting to get up close, but loud noises and sudden movements can disturb their spawning activity. For more valuable tips and the latest information, visit WSU's Facebook page.
Kitsap Salmon Tours
Kitsap Salmon tours are back in person this year! Join us November 6th from 10-2pm at various riverbank sites across the county as we explore all things salmon with biologists, local environmental organizations, and trained docents. This FREE event offers exciting opportunities such as interactive activities through Kitsap Regional Library, guided walks at Keta Legacy’s Rhododendron Preserve, Salmon Bingo, and many more. You can discover local salmon species, their lifecycles, and the role you play in their survival. Bring your family, gather your friends, and prepare your questions. Join us in experiencing this remarkable migration firsthand. Click here for more information.
It may be raining, but we’ll be there rain or shine. Please dress for the weather, wear comfortable waterproof shoes, and exercise caution when parking and/or crossing roads. Some sites involve a hike to the stream (especially the Rhododendron Preserve).
Salmon will be migrating throughout the fall, so feel free to visit these sites at a different time and see what you can find.
The following locations are available for self-guided salmon migration viewing mid October through November.
Chico Creek Mouth - 4270 Kitty Hawk Dr. NW, Bremerton
Clear Creek Trail - Ridgetop Pavilion, 9228 Ridgetop Blvd, Silverdale. Wheelchair accessible.
Cowling Creek - 20325 Miller Bay Road, Poulsbo 98370
Keta Legacy Rhododendron Preserve - 2401 Seabeck Highway, Seabeck 98312
Poulsbo's Fish Park - 288 NW Lindvig Way, Poulsbo, WA 98370. Wheelchair accessible.
Salmon Haven at Dickerson Creek - Northlake Way NW and Taylor Rd, Bremerton 98312
Chico Salmon Viewing Park - 3121 Chico Way NW, Bremerton, WA 98312
Visit the WSU Kitsap County Extension website for more details.
Also, check out WSU facebook page for updated details!
Click here for more details!
Brought to you by Chico Salmon Park Stewardship Group, City of Poulsbo, City of Bremerton, Clean Water Kitsap, Great Peninsula Conservancy, Kitsap County, Mountaineers Foundation, Suquamish Tribe, Washington Sea Grant, WSU Extension, Clear Creek Task Force, Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group, Keta Legacy Foundation, Kitsap PUD, Kitsap Poggie Club, Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife.