Visit Bayshore Preserve this November to witness the annual chum salmon run! After 3-5 years growing in the Pacific Ocean, chum salmon return to Johns Creek to spawn each fall.
Female salmon lay their eggs in nests, called redds (from Old English “to make ready”). Soon after emerging from the gravel, young chum salmon, called fry, migrate directly downstream to the salty estuary. Many other salmon species like coho, cutthroat, and steelhead live in freshwater as juveniles instead. Chum salmon make the most of the salty nearshore habitat, feeding on insects, spiders, worms, and small crustaceans as they gain strength to migrate back to the Pacific Ocean.
Salmon are an essential part of culture, nutrition, and the natural environment. They bring nutrients from the ocean to nourish plants and animals on land. Capitol Land Trust has worked hard to conserve and restore this critical natural area.
There are several locations at Bayshore Preserve to watch the salmon swimming upstream and spawning. The first is from the bridge and under the maple canopy to the right of the bridge. Continue your walk down the Johns Creek Trail to a wood seating area on the right where you can view the creek. Another great place is along the fishing trail to the Fishing Point. See below for a trail map.
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Fishing is not allowed on the property, but Capitol Land Trust does provide access via a trail to public land for fishing at the mouth of Johns Creek – see maps on kiosk for directions.
Open from dawn till dusk.
Keep pets on leash and dispose of waste properly.
No hunting, fires, fireworks, camping, or motorized vehicles.
No removal of vegetation or mushrooms.
Avoid walking in active restoration areas – stay on existing trails.
Location: 3800 WA-3, Shelton, WA 98584. Free parking to the right of the gate facing a wood and metal mesh fence. Alternative parking is available at the WDFW parking lot to the north of Bayshore Preserve with a Discover Pass. Please do not block the metal gate at the main entrance.
Transit Options: Mason County Transit route 1 and Dial-A-Ride. (Please note, there is not a marked bus stop at Bayshore Preserve, so you will need to communicate to the bus driver where you are going and flag them down for your return trip.)
Trail Map: Bayshore Preserve Trail Map
The flat dirt trail is approximately 0.80 miles.