The Grand Salmon - A source to sea journey

4 women, 3 rivers, 3 endangered species of salmon, 1000+ river miles, 4 dams, 1 Stibnite mine, 1 film

A team of women are skied and paddled the Salmon River from the source to the sea as a conservation campaign promoting the removal of the four lower Snake River dams and a moratorium on the Stibnite Gold Project, in order to save Idaho’s rapidly dwindling salmon populations from extinction.

The mission is to connect, educate, and engage communities through conversations and storytelling in a call to action around Idaho’s endangered chinook, sockeye, and steelhead populations.

The women traveled over 1,000 miles, following the natural migration path of anadromous fish from the rivers of central Idaho to the Pacific Ocean. The team will make a film about their journey, the salmon populations, the communities most impacted by the declining salmon populations, and the necessity to breach the dams for salmon recovery.

The project included grassroots action through community events such as group paddling days, tribal visits, river clean ups, citizen science and more. Additionally several educational events with school groups, partnered non-profit organizations, and expert speaker took place.

End of April: begin skiing to the headwaters of the Middle Fork Salmon.

Early May: paddle from the source of the Middle Fork to Corn Creek, then get shuttled to the headwaters of the Main Salmon to start skiing and paddling.

May 19th: reach the put-in for the permitted section of the Main Salmon. Paddle the South Fork Salmon before or after the permitted section of the Main – as river levels allow.

End of May through mid-June: paddle the Lower Salmon through the Snake, switch to sea kayaks, portage the 4 Lower Snake River Dams.

Mid-June: continue in sea kayaks and the slog of flat water with headwinds and 4 more dam portages down the Columbia.

Mid July: reach the Pacific Ocean!

Track Their Progress

Want to get involved and be a part of this incredible cause? There are so many ways to help! From volunteering, to sponsorship, to writing your senators, to donating and spreading the word. It takes a village!

Get Involved

We acknowledge we live and will be traveling on stolen, Indigenous lands and waters throughout this journey. Our goal is to elevate the voices of the Indigenous populations who have had their culture and way of life stripped from them by the impacts of these dams and the declining Snake River Basin salmon populations. 

We would like to recognize that we will be traveling on and through the stolen lands of the Nimiipuu (Nez Perce), Pohogues (Shoshone-Bannock), Agaidika (Lemhi-Shoshone), Palouse, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs including the Cayusa, Umatilla and Walla Walla, Wasco and Wishram, Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde including the Cascades, Chinook, Multnomah Chinook, Cathlamet Chinook, Skilloot Chinook; Chinook Indian Nation, including the Lower Chinook, Clatsop, Kathlamet, Wahkiakum, and Willapa; Yakama Nation including Yakama, Klickitat, and Walla Walla, Coleville, Wanapum, Burns Paiute Tribe, Coeur d’Alene Tribe, Kalispel, Kootenai Tribe of Idaho, Northwestern band of the Shoshone Nation, Shoshone-Paiute Tribes, and the Spokane.

We encourage you to find out the lands you live, play, and paddle on by visiting Native Land Digital.

Our Land Acknowledgement is an ongoing and evolving effort. If you see any missing information, Tribe acknowledgments or otherwise, please do not hesitate to share this information with us so that we may continue to update this information to be as comprehensive, accurate and inclusive as possible.