Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Following the salmon

This adventure was inspired by the many salmon activities we've done over the years. 

You will start at Fauntleroy Park, where during the spring, salmon fry—which have been nurtured since eggs over the winter—are released into Fauntleroy Creek by school kids as part of the Salmon in the Schools program. You will then follow their journey, where in the fall their return is celebrated with making salmon hats at the Fauntleroy Fall Festival and they are welcomed home in a drumming event near the ferry where volunteers help count the ones returning. You will then end at a fantastic little beach on the sound with cool art and stories.

Talk the walk anytime of year and if you don't see any actual salmon there are plenty of others (metal, concrete, etc) to spot along the way. And please help the salmon in their journey by staying out of the creek.

Salmon Walk

Milage: About 2 miles round trip
Map: More detailed map

1. Fauntleroy Park
SW 97th Street or SW Barton Street
Start at Fauntleroy Park. (Barton Street entrance for a shorter walk and 97th Street entrance for a slightly longer walk.) This heavily-forested park with multiple trails is an adventure all in it’s own but for today we’re just passing through. You will see the creek, which flows year round and is fed by springs and runoff, several times along the way. If you’re visiting during the wetter seasons, the trails can get muddy. A park map is available at the kiosks by the main entrances or here.

2. Bridge over creek
Stop at the bridge where several schools that participate in the Salmon in the Schools program release fry into the creek at this spot in the spring.

Head back to the trail you were on, following it until you exit the park via the YMCA parking lot.  Continue west to SW Barton Street and take the crosswalk towards a large brick building (Fauntleroy Schoolhouse). Once across you’ll see a salmon sculpture, Twisted Tails. Walk north along California Ave SW towards SW Director Street. In the fall, this area is home to the Fauntleroy Fall Festival.

Walk west down SW Director Street to the end. On the left you will see the entrance to your next stop.

3. Fauntleroy Creek Ravine
9102 SW Fauntleroy Way SW
(Corner of SW Director Street and upper Fauntleroy Way SW)

Across from the Fauntleroy Ferry terminal is a tiny park that overlooks a fish ladder. In October there’s a family-friendly event welcoming the salmon home with drums and where you can also volunteer to help count any returning salmon.

Next, take the stairs down towards the ferry terminal, cross the street and spot a pair of bright blue metal gates that denote the entrance to your next stop.

4. Cove Park
4897 SW Barton Street
Next to the Fauntleroy Ferry terminal is a small park with beach access and wonderful art.
At the kiosk, you will see a brochure that tells the story of the artist, Thomas E. Jay, and highlights several items on a self-guided tour of the park. Make sure to keep your eye out for unusual items that are part of the path—a horse bit, tiny magnifying glass—and read the story that goes along with the raven sculpture by the sealing canoe.

Extend the adventure:
  • Take a ferry ride
    Hop a boat and take a ride round trip. 
  • Grab a bite to eat on your way back.
    Several options at the intersection of SW Wildwood Place and SW 45th Ave for a full meal or treat.
Curious to learn more: