Cedar River Salmon Journey
Salmon are the vehicle through which we tell the story of clean water and healthy habitat.
Each summer and fall, you can join volunteer naturalists at the Chittenden Locks and five sites along the Cedar River to see salmon. Join us for this fun, free, and family friendly program!
Cedar River Salmon Journey celebrates its best season yet, educating more than 13,500 visitors with the help of 114 amazing volunteer naturalists. Naturalists shared their passion and knowledge of salmon with visitors as they enjoyed great fish viewing along the Cedar River, at the Chittenden Locks, and at restoration events throughout the watershed. We would like to thank all our volunteers, sponsors, and partners for helping make our 16th season such a success. This program continues to thrive because of your help and support.
We received over 800 surveys from visitors, and were inspired by the actions you are willing to take to help salmon!
Learn about the epic journey that takes place every year as salmon swim from the ocean, through the Chittenden Locks, through Lake Washington, and up the Cedar River to spawn. The Cedar River hosts Chinook, sockeye and coho salmon among other fish species. Cedar River Chinook and Puget Sound Steelhead are currently listed as threatened species.
June 28 2014, July 5 & 26 2014
Sockeye, chinook, and coho salmon, as well as steelhead, migrate through
the ship canal back to Lake Washington and its tributaries. July
through September are the best months to view adult salmon in the fish
At the Renton Library, stand directly above the salmon, and see many human changes to the Cedar River. The Cedar River’s flow was diverted from the Duwamish River to Lake Washington in 1912.
At Cedar River Park, see where some sockeye are removed for the hatchery at Landsburg. You may see Chinook and coho here too, as they pass through the weir to spawn upstream.
When you stand on the bridge, the armored banks of the river are visible. Watch salmon as they stop to rest or spawn near the bridge. You may even see a female Chinook guarding her redd!
At Cavanaugh Pond, take a 30 minute tour past wildlife viewing areas and habitat restoration project areas. Shortly after gravel mining ended in the mid-1970s, the Cedar River seeped through the levee and combined with groundwater to create Cavanaugh Pond. The gravel bottom of the pond provides excellent spawning grounds for salmon!
At Landsburg, take a 45 minute tour up to the Diversion Dam where you will learn about the greater Seattle area’s water supply and see how some salmon are allowed to pass into the closed boundaries of the watershed. Landbsurg Park also has viewing platforms where you can observe salmon spawning.