Gilda and Finley, the hatchery’s two coho salmon statues, are arguably Issaquah’s most famous couple. These 8-feet bronze sculptures were created by artist Tom Jay. The salmon’s size is based on fossils of salmon from the Ice Age. Some 5-6 million years ago, such “saber-tooth salmon” existed, measuring up to 10-feet long and weighing up to 500 pounds!
The sculptures rest in gravel, boulders, logs and native plants – perfect salmon spawning habitat. Look closely in those rocks to find replicas of salmonid fossils and petroglyphs that are approximations of coast Salish rock art dating back some 3,000 years.
The sculptures were installed in 1996 and 1998 and funded by grants from the City of Issaquah Arts Commission and FISH. Please refrain from climbing on the sculptures.