Salmon sightings in Auburn Ravine

By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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Salmon are returning to the Auburn Ravine. Jack Sanchez, president of the Auburn-based Save Auburn Ravine Salmon and Steelhead, reported that two witnesses saw three large salmon at the Lincoln Gauging Station last Sunday. And the water quality class at Lincoln High School taught by Dave Foxworthy has several photos of salmon – both living and dead – that have been taken over the past four weeks during spawning season, Sanchez said. Sanchez and his group are dedicated to bringing salmon back to their natural upstream spawning grounds again after being absent since the 1980s. Salmon return to freshwater streams to lay their eggs and die. The effort led by Sanchez and his organization continues to work to remove man-made barriers along the ravine that prevent the fish from traveling as far upstream as Auburn and the School Park Preserve across High Street from Placer High School. Salmon sighting this fall as far as a mile upstream from the city of Lincoln, at Turkey Creek Golf Course, has Sanchez elated. The only previous sighting was of one salmon last March at the Fowler Road bridge, he said. Now there have been several sightings, with fish as heavy as 35 pounds. “The salmon are in Lincoln now, perhaps the Native American ‘Calling Back the Salmon Ceremony” worked,” Sanchez said. The salmon group is a non-profit that organized an Oct. 23 celebration at Lincoln’s McBean Park to promote a healthy fish population in local streams. Auburn Ravine meanders 33 miles through the foothills, eventually flowing into the Sacramento River in Verona.