Streams & Shorelines
All of the water that runs through drains to one of three inlets: Eld Inlet, Budd Inlet, and Henderson Inlet. Most of Olympia drains to Budd Inlet, as does the Deschutes and Capital Lake.
Our streams, lakes, marine shorelines and wetlands are located in one of twelve different watersheds.
Watersheds are areas of land that drain to a common waterbody. Learn more about our watersheds, their unique features and and how they impact our community waterbodies.
|Capitol Lake||Marathon and Heritage Parks||Budd Inlet|
|Chambers Creek||Chambers Creek||Deschutes River|
|East Bay||East Bay Park||Budd Inlet|
|Ellis Creek||Priest Point Park - Ellis Cove||Budd Inlet|
|Green Cove Creek||Grass Lake Refuge||Eld Inlet|
|Indian Creek||Woodland Trail||Budd Inlet|
|Mission Creek||Missions Wetlands||Budd Inlet|
|Moxlie Creek||Watershed Park||Budd Inlet|
|Percival Creek||Black Lake Meadows||Capitol Lake|
|Schneider Creek||Giles Street Stormwater Facility
and Decatur Woods Park
|West Bay||Garfield Creek Trail||Budd Inlet|
|Woodard Creek||Woodard Bay Conservation Area||Henderson Inlet|
Why are they important? At the southern-most reach of the Puget Sound, Olympia is a unique place with many small but diverse waters. Each has a unique shape and drainage, based on how the Frasier glacier moved across it 15,000 years ago. These characteristics determine the soil, plant communities, fish and wildlife it can support.
These watershed characteristics also help decide where we can build parts of our city and still have healthy waters. We know that sensitive areas such as stream corridors, the Budd Inlet shoreline, and wetlands must be protected for salmon and waterfowl to return. They provide many ecological functions, like providing food and shelter for many important plant and animal species.
Are our streams and shorelines in trouble? Water quality and stream health decline with increased human development, like roads and buildings. Some of our waters are still healthy, but many in the urban area are not healthy. Stormwater runoff is a major contributor of non-point source pollution . You can help us reduce pollution. Find out how!
Be nice to Budd! And join Stream Team! For more information, call 360.570.5841.