The Olympian:

Recovering the estuary is vital to dozens of fish and wildlife species, including Puget Sound chinook salmon, a threatened species. The boardwalk doesn’t help the fish, but it could build more public support for their recovery when people experience the changing tides and see fish and wildlife firsthand, said David Troutt, director of natural resources for the Nisqually Tribe.

“To be out in the estuary and see the tidal exchange, you feel that the fish will be here,” Troutt said, adding that pink and chum salmon should start showing up in the next month.

The boardwalk begins within shouting distance of the site of the signing of the Medicine Creek Treaty of 1854, and the creek has been a spiritual place for the tribe for thousands of years, tribal chairwoman Cynthia Iyall said during a welcoming ceremony that preceded the opening of the boardwalk.