Adams River, BC

Salute to the Sockeye

Imagine looking down at a wide expansive river and rather than seeing a typical transparent surface, you see a writhing field of red. This spectacular scene is all yours to experience when you attend the Salute to the Sockeye Festival from September 29 to October 21, 2018. Tens of thousands of salmon will be putting on a show like no other! This exciting event takes place in Roderick Haig-Brown Provincial Park. This park encompasses both sides of the Adams River, between Adams Lake and Shuswap Lake.

There is a small entrance fee for this festival, to offset operating costs and contribute to the Legacy Fund which provides financial support to Shuswap community groups that focus on stewardship activities.

Festival Treats

While attending the Salute to the Sockeye Festival, be sure to check out the various onsite food vendors and artisan booths. Menu choices include hot dogs, pizza, as well as unique items such as wild salmon bannock burgers. Pick up a special souvenir to remind you of the time you were witness to the awesomeness of nature. There will also be the opportunity to learn more about salmon by taking in the Environmental Interpretation program.

Stars of the Show

With your camera at the ready, keep your eyes open for three of the four species of Pacific salmon that will be spawning in the Adams river this year. Look for Chinook, Sockeye, and Coho. The Pink Salmon, the fourth species that typically spawns in the Adams river, is not expected to return until 2019.

Salute to Sockeye SalmonEvery year, Chinook and Sockeye make the journey back to the river. Chinook make an appearance from September through Mid-October every year. They are the largest salmon to spawn in the Adams River. Look for the large dark shadows that lurk in the deep, swift moving parts of the river.

Sockeye Salmon are typically seen from late September through early November. This year is a dominant run year for these colourful fish. Look for the bright red swimmers with the green heads, usually spawning in medium depth and swift moving water.

The Coho Salmon are here from late October through December every year. These solid red coloured river dwellers look smaller and leaner than their cousins. These swimmers can typically be found in slightly deeper, swift moving water.

Salute to Sockeye Salmon run

Fun Facts

Adams Lake is the 24th deepest lake in the world. It is approximately 72 km (45 mi) in length and begins from several unnamed glaciers 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) in height in the north-east region of the Monashee Range of the Columbia Mountains.

This is the land of the Secwepemc people, who’ve inhabited the Adams River Valley for thousands of years. Evidence of habitation dates back to 2000 BCE. The salmon run was an important source of food and trade material for First Nations people in the area.

Getting There

The entrance to the park is 5 km (3.1 miles) from Squilax, on the Squilax-Anglemont Highway. Turn off Hwy 1 and head north on Squilax-Anglemont Road for approximately 5.4 km (3.4 miles) Nearby communities include Scotch Creek, Sorrento, Salmon Arm, Kamloops, and Chase.

Click here for a map with directions from Kamloops. For directions from Salmon Arm, click here.