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Marla Smart

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Cheap family fun: fish hatchery and Susan Creek | Moms

Looking for a fun, cheap adventure for your family?

A couple of weeks ago, I was able to take my third grade class on an end of the year field trip.

We needed to stay fairly local, but still wanted it to feel like we were “getting away.”

I chose a trip to Rock Creek Fish Hatchery with a hike to Susan Creek Falls and cookout to round out the day.


The friendly employees were prepared to teach us a bit about what is going on at the hatchery, as well as answer the myriad of questions my class (and their parents) had.

They showed us the tanks filled with thousands of tiny rainbow trout, waiting to be big enough to go outside to larger tanks.

We were able to feed the adolescent trout, watch salmon on their final leaps through a fish ladder and visit with the resident white sturgeon. (Did you know sturgeon can live up to 100 years and be about 15 feet long?)

Our guide, Nicki, told us that there are coin operated machines with fish food for people to use on future visits and a short hiking trail that takes you to part of the fish ladder to watch the salmon come upstream.

The hatchery facility is also next door to Rock Creek campground.

Our hike to Susan Creek Falls was a beautiful way to end the day.

Even with a little rain falling, the scenery was gorgeous and we were able to do a nature scavenger hunt.

As a teacher and a mom who has taken her own children to this hatchery, I think this is a great day trip for your family.

For very little cost, you get an day of adventure, playing in the beautiful outdoors and learning a little, too.

From I-5, you can reach Rock Creek Fish Hatchery by taking Highway 138 to Idleyld Park. Turn left on Rock Creek Road and travel 1/2 mile to McCarn Land. The hatchery is on the left.


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The News-Review Updated Jun 19, 2014 05:54PM Published Jun 13, 2014 09:31AM Copyright 2014 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.