Salmon and McLane Creek Nature Trail Resources

Salmon Spawning Curriculum Overview (4th-5th Grade)
Salmon Spawning Curriculum Overview (6th-8th Grade)

*Scroll down to sign up for our 2021 Virtual McLane Creek Salmon Field Trips!*

Every year between the end of October and the end of December, the creeks of South Puget Sound are once again teaming with native chum salmon. Visiting a local trail like the McLane Creek Nature Trail or Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail this time of year is a tradition for many of us.

South Sound GREEN, in partnership with Thurston County Stream Team, offers guided tours of McLane Creek Nature Trail every November to show students the beautiful Capitol State Forest environment and to feature the chum salmon returning to the creek to spawn! We also offer virtual field trips for classes that are unable to travel to McLane Creek.

Chum at McLane Creek Nature Trail Digital Journal and other digital resources


If you’ve visited McLane Creek Nature Trail in the past with your students, you may have used Stream Team’s field journal as a guide. We worked to adapt this journal to a digital format with interactive activities, videos and lots of information about salmon! This journal can be completed with or without a live Zoom session (see below for more info). Please make a copy of the notebook to interact with, edit, and share the notebook with your class. For access to the Digital Journal, please fill out this form; you will receive a link to access the journal after submitting your class information.

NEW! Watch out recorded salmon dissection!

NEW! Watch our McLane Creek Chum Salmon video, with background information and live videos of salmon! Or you can look through our salmon pictures and videos on your own with our chum salmon picture album.

NEW! Learn how tires are damaging coho salmon populations in Puget Sound. (Article) (Video)

Still looking for more salmon-based lessons? Check out a collection of salmon resources on our Classroom Resources List, as well as these relevant ThurstonTalk Home Science Activities!

Virtual Salmon Dissections for 2021:

We are offering guided, virtual salmon dissections for local classes and students. If you are interested in participating in a virtual dissection with your class, please sign up here.

Virtual Chum Salmon Spawning Field Trips from McLane Creek

We are offering free 15 minute live Zoom sessions for local classes and students from McLane Creek, where a South Sound GREEN educator will be present to point out salmon spawning behaviors and answer questions.

We are scheduling McLane Creek Salmon Zoom meetings with teachers and classes on a first-come first-serve basis. We will be offering one Zoom meeting per class, and teachers can request a date and time below.

Before filling out the form, please check the calendar below to see if the date and time you are requesting is available. These calendars will be updated daily and manually, so please provide a first and second choice for your meeting in case your time slot is booked.