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About Appeal tribune. (Silverton, Or.) 1999-current | View Entire Issue (Nov. 20, 2019)
❚ WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2019 ❚ 1B
How did coho salmon end up
in the North Santiam River?
Salem Statesman Journal
USA TODAY NETWORK
he legend of how
Oregon’s most deli-
cious ﬁsh arrived in
the North Santiam
River includes some
pretty wild stories. h Some say the
ﬁsh took ﬂight, surviving a tumble
through the turbines of Detroit
and Big Cliﬀ dams to establish a
low. h Others say a truckload of
baby ﬁsh were released into Stout
Creek. Still, others say an enter-
prising angler broke into a ﬁsh
hatchery, stole juvenile ﬁsh and
released them into the Santiam to
improving ﬁshing. h Like all leg-
ends, it’s hard to know the diﬀer-
ence between truth and ﬁction,
and the reality is probably much
simpler, say wildlife oﬃcials.
But however coho salmon ended up
in the Santiam, many anglers are happy
to see them this time of year.
“They have the best meat I’ve ever
had,” said longtime angler and shuttle
driver Bob Lusk, the source of a few co-
ho legends. “We ate one for Thanksgiv-
ing a few years ago and, boy, it tasted
better than any turkey we’ve ever tast-
Fishing guide Mike Ferris pilots his boat down the North Santiam River between Stayton and Shelburn in June.
ZACH URNESS/ STATESMAN JOURNAL
So, where did coho really come
How to catch ’em
Coho aren’t native to the Santiam,
and they don’t return in big numbers ev-
ery year. But wildlife oﬃcials said this
has been a robust season, with more
than 8,500 ﬁsh swimming above Wil-
lamette Falls — the most since 2014.
Coho are 12 to 16 pounds, a classic
chrome color, and anglers are allowed to
harvest two per day. Lusk said he catch-
es them from September all the way
through Thanksgiving on the Santiam.
Coho enjoy the deep and slow waters,
oﬀ the main current. Lusk even uses his
boat to get into the sloughs on the far
edges of the stream, typically down-
stream of Stayton and Mehama bridge.
“Their numbers ﬂuctuate, but in gen-
eral the ﬁshing is better now than it was
20 years ago,” Lusk said.
Coho are certainly in the minority
there. All the other salmon and steel-
A coho salmon in a ﬁsherman’s net. STATESMAN JOURNAL FILE
head have seen major declines on the
To catch coho, Lusk said he uses a #3
Blue Fox lure with a splash of pink, along
with a blue pilot wiggle wart.
The Santiam isn’t the only place coho
Depending on the run, coho can
reach the Tualatin, Molalla, Yamhill and
Luckiamute rivers, as well as Rickreall
Creek, said Oregon Fish and Wildlife
Department biologist Elise Kelley.
“The Yamhill River usually has the
strongest runs,” she said.
Coho are interesting not just because
of their taste, but because it’s not clear
exactly how they arrived in the North
Santiam or Upper Willamette water-
Historically, only winter steelhead
and spring chinook could migrate above
Willamette Falls on high ﬂows.
The oﬃcial story on coho is that be-
ginning in the 1950s, wildlife oﬃcials
stocked all manner of ﬁsh above Wil-
lamette Falls, hoping to improve ﬁshing,
“They never did much — we never es-
tablished a population,” said Bruce
McIntosh, deputy ﬁsh chief of inland
ﬁsheries for the Oregon Department of
Fish and Wildlife. “It petered out in the
1980s and by the 1990s they’d mostly
But then a funny thing happened.
Ocean conditions improved and, seem-
ingly out of nowhere, coho began re-
turning in big numbers. After being a
See SALMON, Page 2B
Kennedy, St. Paul win volleyball titles
Pete Martini Salem Statesman Journal
USA TODAY NETWORK
State cross country results
Silverton: 17. Trevor Ortega (16:21.1); 23. Jadon Mansur (16:30.5);
44. Jonathan Hansen (17:02.5); 52. Carter Gauvin (17:12.2); 64. An-
drew Fronza (17:34.4); 74. Colin Allen (17:57.6); 77. Sam Ellingson
Individual state champion: Evan Holland, Ashland (14:30.4)
Team state champion: Ashland (41).
Local team placing: 7. Silverton (188).
CLASS 5A BOYS
OSAA CLASS 2A
Kennedy: The Trojans beat Central
Linn 3-0 on Saturday to capture the
OSAA Class 2A state championship.
In the title match, Sophia Carley had
18 kills for Kennedy in the victory, and
Ellie Cantu had 25 assists.
The Trojans ﬁnished the season 33-1.
St. Paul: The Buckaroos beat Powder
Valley 3-0 on Saturday to win the OSAA
Class 1A state championship.
In the title match, Isabelle Wyss had
18 kills for St. Paul, and Karlee Souther-
land added 18 assists.
Perrydale: Perrydale lost 3-0 to Da-
mascus Christian on Saturday to place
sixth in the state tournament.
Perrydale beat Crosshill Christian 3-2
in the consolation.
North Marion: North Marion lost 3-0
to Banks in the consolation round on
Saturday at the OSAA Class 4A state
On the boys side, Silverton placed
seventh. Trevor Ortega led the team ﬁn-
ishing 17th in 16.21.1.
CLASS 4A BOYS
Stayton: 23. Ben Kirby (16:36.5).
Individual state champion: John Peckham (15:48.7).
Team state champion: Philomath/Kings Valley (65).
CLASS 4A GIRLS
Stayton: 10. Hope Bridge (19:14.2); 28. Hailey Notman (20:14.2);
34. Bridget Spencer (20:38.7); 45. Jessica Mitchell (21:05.4); 50.
Skyla Anderson (21:24.7); 60. Emma Frazeur (22:11.6); 73. Sarah
Individual state champion: Ella Thorsett, Sisters (17:43.7)
Team state champion: Marist (50).
Local team placing: 5. Stayton (141).
CLASS 3A BOYS
Amity: 26. Drew McMullen (17:43.5).
Blanchet: 43. Andrew Hill (18:34.1).
Individual state champion: Henry Coughlin, Enterprise/Jo-
Team state champion: Enterprise/Joseph/Wallowa (35).
Local team placing: 6. Santiam Christian (177).
CLASS 3A/2A/1A GIRLS
Kennedy’s Ibeth Gomez sets the ball in a match on Oct. 21. On Saturday, Kennedy
beat Central Linn 3-0 to win the Class 2A state championship. ANNA REED/STATESMAN
CLASS 4A GIRLS AND BOYS
Stayton’s girls team placed ﬁfth in
the OSAA Class 4A state meet, with
Hope Bridge leading the Eagles with a
10th-place ﬁnish at 19:14.2.
On the boys side, Stayton’s Ben Kirby
was 23rd with a time of 16:36.5.
CLASS 3A BOYS, 3A/2A/1A GIRLS,
In the 3A/2A/1A girls meet, Kennedy
placed seventh, with Cassie Traeger
leading the Trojans with a 25th-place
ﬁnish at 21:10.0.
In the 2A/1A boys meet, Chemawa
placed 10th, with Clement Afterbuﬀalo
ﬁnishing 16th at 17:12.6 to lead the team.
Kennedy: 25. Cassie Traeger (21:10.0); 30. Kylee Rodriguez
(21:25.5); 40. Aleksandra Eyles (22:01.1); 53. Whitney Lopez
(23:19.6); 62. Mikayla Schaecher (24:14.2); 70. Gisell Juarez
(25:16.5); 72. Haley Kline (25:21.0).
Scio: 17. Athena Lau (20:33.1).
Individual state champion: Lila Fenner, Catlin Gabel
Team state champion: Burns (43).
Local team placing: 7. Kennedy (170).
CLASS 2A/1A BOYS
Chemawa: 16. Clement Afterbuffalo (17:12.6); 43. Tyrrel Francis-
co (18:05.2); 55. Isaac Corn (18:50.7); 60. Davey Hogan (19:12.2);
65. Nazaire Brisbois (19:48.6); 66. Ryan Weir (20:04.6); 74. Aurelio
St. Paul: 12. Broden Lear (16:49.8).
Individual state champion: Seth Bergeron, St. Stephens
Team state champion: St. Stephens Academy (42).
Local team placing: 10. Chemawa (208).