Fall Creek – Chinook Run

Fall Creek is a tributary of the Alsea River.  A well-maintained gravel road is between mile markers 26 and 27 on the Alsea Highway 34. We’ve been checking Fall Creek, every couple weeks, for salmon but hadn’t seen any at the falls until this week.

Fall Creek Falls
Fall Creek Falls

 There’s a really nice research center about a half-mile further up the road.  They use workampers and other volunteers seasonally.

Fall Creek Chinook Run - 2013
Chinook on redds

But we just like to watch the salmon jump the falls.  We only saw one jump so we walked down the river to see how many we could find on redds.  “Redds” are the gravel beds where salmon lay their eggs.

Fall Creek Chinook Run - 2013
No fishing!

But we were mostly excited to see the size of these Chinook this year.  They are probably in the 30-40 lb range!

Fall Creek Chinook Run - 2013
Some are sore backs

“Sore Back” is a nickname given to the adult salmon that are dying.  As their bodies deteriorate, they turn white and look like sores.

Fall Creek Chinook Run - 2013
Pretty beat up

  They’ll tend their eggs until they die.

Salmon lesson for the day:  We never stop being a parent.

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