Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail (KCST) is our region’s premiere salmon-viewing experience. Each year, over 5,000 students and local residents visit the Trail to learn more about the salmon life cycle and to observe Chum spawning and courting behaviors.
In any given year, the spawning salmon population can reach as high as 80,000 fish. Normally, the range is between 20,000 and 40,000. These spawning adults can produce approximately 30 million to 60 million eggs annually; not all eggs will survive to become fry or even to adults. On average, only 2-3 individuals will complete their natural life cycle and return to the natal stream where they were hatched. These dying fish and carcasses are actually a critical part of salmon’s overall survival strategy.
This half-mile community gem, includes 11 tailor-made viewing stations and interpretive signage, to assist the visitor in viewing tens of thousands of wild chum salmon spawning in their natural environment. The site also has a parking lot specially designed to minimize the impact of visitors on the environment. Volunteer trail guides are available to answer visitor questions, and lead groups scheduled by appointment.
Access to the trail is FREE for everyone. The Trail is supported directly by visitor donations, a $2,500 grant from the Squaxin Tribe and the annual fall “Chili and Chowder” fundraiser. The land is owned by Taylor Shellfish Farms, who graciously provide access to the trail and help us with “Chili and Chowder”.
SPSSEG set a goal to raise $2,500 through corporate and business giving to help support operations for the Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail. We thanks to the following generous organizations, we attained out goal for the 2013 season. We received grants from the Squaxin Tribe ($2,500), The Mountaineers Foundation ($1,500), and Green Diamond Resource Company ($500)!
We also raised $1,250 at the second annual Chum, Chowder & Chocolate open house on November 16. A special thank you to Xihn’s Clam & Oyster House for providing wonderful geoduck chowder and Taylor Shellfish for the geoduck and steamed clams.
SPSSEG uses these funds to help coordinate teachers and school field trips, organize and support over 32 volunteers docents, and maintain the Trail. This year, 52 classes with 2,329 students and 503 chaperones saw chum salmon spawning behavior and learned about riparian ecosystems at the Trail. A $35 donation will support 10 student visits. Please help keep the Trail alive and at its educational best!
Please join SPSSEG, Xinh’s Clam and Oyster House and Taylor Shellfish at the Trail this Saturday, November 16. Xinh will prepare her world famous Clam Chowder, Taylor is providing sautéed shellfish and SPSSEG staff will be on hand to serve up some hot-coco, coffee and tea.
As you all know, the Trail is the south Puget Sounds premier chum salmon viewing trail. The Trail is supported by the Squaxin Tribe, Taylor Shellfish, Green Diamond Resources and by donations from people like you. A $35 donation supports 10 student visitors to the Trail.
This year, 52 local school groups, with 2,290 students and 477 chaperones will learn the importance of salmon and riparian ecosystems. These trips are supported by our 42 volunteer docents (trail guides) and volunteer maintenance crew.
The Trail is also visited by many individuals on weekends, holidays and the day after Thanksgiving.
Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail (KCST) gives students an opportunity to watch spawning Chum salmon in their natural habitat. It provides an ideal field trip opportunity for your students and is designed for group learning. KCST teaches visitors about salmon and environmental stewardship through a series of interpretive signs along the trail. It is an excellent way to give kids a real-world connection to concepts they are learning in the classroom.
The trail will be open to the public this year between November 2 and December 1. Free weekday school field trips are available by reservation only. If you are interested in setting up a field trip, please provide the following information for each class:
- Preferred date:
- Preferred time:
- Alternative date:
- Alternative time:
- Number of students:
- Ages or grade of students:
- Number of adults:
- Your Phone (cell & office):
- Arriving by bus or car:
- Number of vehicles:
We will try to get your preferred date and time and currently have lots of openings. Trail visits usually take approximately 1.5 hours, if you would prefer more time, please indicate. You will receive an e-mail confirming your date and time.
If you would like a trained Docent to lead your class through the trail, please make those arrangements when you schedule your visit. You will find general Trail information under the Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail tab. Sample curriculum can be found under the Education & Outreach tab. If you are unable to schedule a KCST fieldtrip, we have Education & Outreach staff available after December 1 to present in your classroom.
A parent to student ration of 1:10 is recommended for your visit to the trail. As parking at the trail is limited, please make arrangements for your party to carpool as much as possible. The majority of the trail is ADA accessible. Please review Trail Etiquette with your class before arrival.
The salmon trail is a project of the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group and is supported through grants and donations. It was created as a learning opportunity for adults and children throughout the southern Puget Sound area. On weekends, the Friday after Thanksgiving and Veterans Day, the Trail is open to the general public and staffed with trained Trail Docents.
Please contact SPSSEG’s Trail Coordinators with questions or concerns.
The Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail will open on November 2 and remain open until December 1. As always, the Trail is open to the general public on weekends, Veteran’s Day and the day after Thanksgiving. To schedule a group visit to the Trail, please contact Adam Sant by email or by phone at (360) 412-0808 X 107.
Docent training will be October 19 at the Trail. The training will be from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the Trail. Please wear appropriate clothing and bring a lunch. To see what will be covered during the training, download the agenda here.
The second annual Chowder & Chili Open House will be Saturday, November 16 from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Enjoy a cup of Xihn’s famous Chowder, Taylor Shellfish, Chili and warm drinks while viewing the spawning chum. Donations to support The Trail will be accepted.
Docents, access your web page here