When the Grand Coulee Dam and later the Chief Joseph Dam were built on the Columbia River, they blocked salmon from thousands of miles of Upper Columbia Basin habitat. This action decimated salmon populations. Indigenous people of the Upper Columbia no longer had access to salmon in their ancestral waters. Salmon are sacred to the native peoples of the Northwest. The loss of salmon changed the way we live, impacting our religion, lifestyle, culture, economy, and health. In 2019, members of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation released salmon above Chief Joseph Dam and, a few days later, above Grand Coulee. It was the first time in more than 80 years that salmon were able to spawn above Grand Coulee Dam. Watch our video to learn more.