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Fish Passage 2022 offers a variety of field trips and workshops for registered conference attendees. Sign-up for these events is part of conference registration, and most events require an additional fee. Please click on individual events below to learn more. 

Note: Events labeled with an asterisk (*) are available to virtual conference attendees, but all other events require in-person attendance.  


Time: 8am to 12pm PDT 
Location: Discovery Hall (in-person or virtual)
YouTube Recording Link:
Capacity: 40
Cost: Free

Facilitated by: Aaron Legge, Courtney MacSween, Jean Quirion, Tracey Steig, Colleen Sullivan

Join Innovasea experts as they walk you through the basics of acoustic telemetry technology from study design and deployment to fine-scale positioning applications and real-time data options to data analysis and reporting. We will place particular emphasis on our new 307 kHz system which uses digital receivers, small tags, and coding systems that perform exceptionally well in high flow and extremely noisy conditions. This system provides researchers, water managers, and hydro facility operators with new and reliable methods for learning about animals and their behavior in and around these environments. Finally, we will discuss how our Fathom Software Suite of tools revolutionizes data gathering and management for all your research and study needs – from collection and curation to analysis and storage.

Time: 8am to 4pm PDT
Location: Discovery Hall (in-person or virtual)
YouTube Recording Link:
Capacity: 80-120
Cost: $30 in-person (includes lunch); Free for virtual attendees

The National Marine Fisheries Service’s (NMFS) West Coast Region (WCR) has revised and updated its passage design manuals for salmon and steelhead to combine screening and passage criteria, water drafting guidelines, and fish screening criteria for pumped water intakes which cover the differences in hydrology and hydraulics across the ecologically diverse west coast region and developed guidance on incorporating climate resiliency into fish passage facility design.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) Pacific Lamprey Conservation Initiative (PLCI) has, through its Lamprey Technical Workgroup, developed Practical Guidelines for Incorporating Adult Pacific Lamprey Passage at Fishways and the FWS is updating their passage guidelines for Pacific Lamprey. These guidance documents can inform how to consider the passage needs of native lamprey species without compromising conditions for salmon.

A panel of NMFS and FWS fish passage experts will present these updated and new publications and demonstrate their use through example projects. Updated and new guidance documents include: Incorporating Climate Resiliency into Fish Passage Design; Pre-Design Guidelines for California Fish Passage Facilities; NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region Anadromous Salmonid Passage Design Manual; Applications in California at Engineered Stream Crossings to Facilitate Passage of Anadromous Salmonids (addendum 2019); Practical Guidelines for Incorporating Adult Pacific Lamprey Passage at Fishways; Barriers to Adult Pacific Lamprey at Road Crossings: Guidelines for Evaluating and Providing Passage; and USFWS Passage Guidelines for Pacific Lamprey.

Time: 8am to 4pm PDT
Location: Discovery Hall  (in-person only)

Capacity: 35
Cost: $30 (includes lunch)

Facilitated by: Dr. Kelly Robinson, Michigan State University

The use of fish passage technologies to restore migratory pathways around barriers in rivers and other freshwater ecosystems is a product of decision-making processes at various scales. Structured decision making (SDM) is a transparent and explicit framework for evaluating decisions that can provide practitioners and policy makers with tools to reduce uncertainty, adapt to changing environmental conditions, evaluate trade-offs and alternatives, and manage risks. This one-day workshop will provide participants with a broad overview of SDM concepts and its applicability to fish passage and river connectivity projects. Upon completion, workshop participants will be able to: 1) articulate the steps of SDM and recognize the benefits of this process to simplifying and clarifying complex decisions, 2) understand where scientific evidence (ecological and social) is most appropriately brought to bear in fish passage decisions, and how to include uncertainty, and 3) develop practical experience and take-home tools to start using SDM on a daily basis. The workshop will incorporate lectures, case studies, and discussion formats to facilitate interaction between participants and instructor(s). The registration fee will cover the cost of refreshments and printed materials.

Field trips

Time: 9am to 1pm PDT
Capacity: 15 (FULL)
Cost: $15
Length: 3 miles; 1000 feet elevation gain (bottled water provided*)

Strap on your hiking boots, get your camera ready, and join local geologist and author Bruce Bjornstad for a guided hike on Badger Mountain to learn about the natural history of the Tri Cities, particularly the ice age floods. You’ll see firsthand how immense glacial forces and repeated flooding events worked over several millennia to sculpt the river valleys and geologic formations of southeast and south-central Washington during the last ice age. From the top of 1,590-foot Badger Mountain, participants will see sweeping views of the Columbia River Basin, the Tri Cities, and, if visibility is clear enough, might even catch a glimpse of volcanic Mt. Rainier, 120 miles northwest in the Cascade mountain range. 

* Hiking in nature carries inherent risks, including insect bites, wildlife encounters, sunburn, and heat stroke. Stay on the trail, be sure to dress appropriately, and be prepared to spend two hours in the elements. Bottled water will be provided, and participants are encouraged to bring snacks. Please be sure to pack out your trash and dispose of it properly!

Time: 8am to 2pm PDT
Capacity: 45
Cost: $20

This tour will travel approximately 45 minutes from PNNL to Ice Harbor dam on the Snake River. This approximately 100 ft tall dam that is owned and operated by the US Army Corp of Engineer was completed in 1961. It originally had vertical slot fish ladders on both the north and south shores that have been replicated in many other sites since the construction. In addition to the fish ladder the tour will view the many other fish passage improvements that have been installed and continue to be installed. These include the turbine bypass system, the removable spillway weir, and improved fish passage turbines. Following the tour of the dam, the field trip will proceed to Ice Harbor Brewery restaurant for lunch and drinks. Lunch is not included in the cost of this tour.

Time: 8am to 5pm PDT
Capacity: 45
Cost: $55 (includes lunch)

Mill Creek starts in the Blue Mountains in eastern Washington and flows through the city of Walla Walla, WA. The creek is prone to flash floods and a large flood in 1931 did extensive damage to the city of Walla Walla, WA. The response was the authorization of a large flood control project that built a diversion dam with diversion to off-creek storage in Bennington lake. This project also connected previous levees and flood walls to provide a continuous levee from the diversion through the city of Walla Walla, WA for flood protection. Portions of the flood control channel are cobble bed with grade control structures and portions of the channel are concrete bottom channel with a low flow channel. The project was built by the US Army Corp of Engineers but all except 1 mile of portion at the upstream end was handed over to the Mill Creek flood control district for management and maintenance. While the project has worked well to prevent flood control there are extensive barriers to fish passage for both salmon and other species. Recently various improvements have been installed both on the USACE section and the MCFCD section. The Tri-State Steelheaders have been the leaders on get designs and modifications complete on the MCFCD section and will lead this tour. The tour will provide an overview of the changes and then stop at multiple fish passage improvements to fish ladders, grade control structures, and the concrete channel. Some of the multiple unique fish passage improvements can be seen at the following website ( This tour will include a stop at this year’s new construction of fish passage modifications to the concrete channel. A pack lunch will be provided at a park. The tour will conclude with winery stops in downtown Walla Walla, WA ( Tasting fees (~$10 to $25 per winery per person) are not included in this tour.

Time: 9am to 12pm PDT
Capacity: 20 (FULL)
Cost: $15

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) advances the frontiers of knowledge, taking on some of the world’s greatest science and technology challenges. Distinctive strengths in chemistry, Earth sciences, biology, and data science are central to our scientific discovery mission. PNNL research supports sustainable hydropower and fisheries populations in the United States and throughout the world. This field trip will include guided tours of two state-of-the-art facilities and a chance to learn about current efforts from our multidisciplinary research team:

The Aquatics Research Laboratory is a unique facility that operates at the nexus of biology, engineering, and geochemistry. Our ARL teams leverage fish-rearing and analytical capabilities of the lab to support investigations into fish behavior and physiology, as well as new monitoring and passage technologies. Specialized research equipment and flexible operations allow researchers to simulate field conditions in a controlled environment, serving as an intermediary between benchtop and field-scale testing.

The Bio-Acoustics and Flow Laboratory is an internationally accredited facility that supports the development and testing of novel environmental sensors needed to address current and emerging issues for fish passage and sustainable hydropower. This is the starting place for many technologies that have since been used around the globe, including Sensor Fish and JSATS.