Salmon Kayak Tour

IMGP7754  Talking first at the pond, then to the kayaks. This is Spring, our guide, talking. IMGP7755  And Paul Dorn, the fisheries biologist. He was just fascinating. IMGP7756  I took the kids on a kayak salmon tour up Miller Bay. Dave had too many things going on with work so he couldn't join us. Such a bummer. First we met at the hatchery on tribal lands and had a very good discussion with the fisheries biologist for the tribe (in the SEAMAR jacket). IMGP7757  The salmon were jumping right out of the water and onto the bank. They have a lateral line (nervous system) which picks up movement and sound - they could hear the water under the ground and knew that the stream continued on the other side of this 20 foot bank. They wanted to jump across it. These are 18" chum salmon, the first ones back. They breed here, the juvenile salmon grow up in this pond, then smolt (return to sea) when they are old enough.
IMGP7758  The salmon ladder they jump up. It was raining the whole time we were there so many pictures are blurry. I couldn't believe we were actually kayaking in the rain in 50 degree weather, water at 45 degrees or so. Who does that?! With kids?! And no husband?! My friend Amy and her two kids were game, though. We had a great time. The kids had 3 layers on under the waterproof outer shell (jacket and pants). Plus hats and mittens. They were very warm! IMGP7759  See? Northwesterners don't get trapped inside by a little rain. Well, many do, but we don't! IMGP7761  The big salmon! IMGP7762  At the launch site now, checking skirts and rudder foot holds (fitting the kayaks). This is Amy and her daughter.
IMGP7763  Sam down at the bank making huge footprints. IMGP7764  Look who! IMGP7765  Learning how to paddle. We had some people who had moved from TX and had never paddled before. IMGP7766  Off we go, up the stream!
IMGP7767 IMGP7768  Beautiful out despite the grey. I love how the colors pop on a grey day. IMGP7769  My big paddler, helping me. He did really great, insisting on paddling much of the time, racing Sam, of course. IMGP7770  There's Sam and Spring :)
IMGP7774 IMGP7775  Seeing great blue herons and other big birds wanting in on the action. The bears pile up carcasses and come back later to eat them. But in the meantime, the birds enjoy a feast. IMGP7776 IMGP7777
IMGP7760 IMGP7771  Several brief movies to show you what it was like. IMGP7772 IMGP7773