The Tenmile Lakes' Watershed covers approximately 98 square miles (62,720 acres). There are ten lakes within the watershed with a combined surface area of about 4.7 square miles (3008 acres) or 5% of the watershed.  These lakes and their drainages, together can be divided into three subbasins.

    The most northern, the Eel Lake subbasin consists of North Clear, Edna, Teal, Schuttpelz, and Hall Lakes which are all drained by Clear Creek into Eel Lake.  Eel Lake is drained by Eel Creek which flows into Tenmile Creek.  The southwestern area, the Saunders Creek subbasin, covers the drainages of Saunders Lake, South Clear Lake, and Saunders Creek.  Saunders Creek flows along the eastern edge of the dunes and into Tenmile Creek.  These two subbasins, combined, cover approximately 28 square miles (17,920 acres).

    The Tenmile Subbasin, the easternmost in the watershed, includes North and South Tenmile Lakes and their respective drainage areas which, combined, cover about 70 square miles (44,800 acres).  Tenmile Creek carries the water from this subbasin for about five miles, past the entrance of Eel and Saunders creeks, to the ocean.

    A northern portion of the watershed is in Douglas County and the remainder is in Coos County.  The city of Lakeside is found within the Tenmile subbasin on the banks of Tenmile lake and Tenmile Creek. There is also a small dunes subbasin that consists of the dune area and itís aquifers, which is located on the western side of the watershed. 

    The Tenmile watershed is predominantly forested uplands.  Since these forests cover the majority of the drainage, they intercept most of the rain that falls within the watershed, and so act as the catch basin for the entire watershed.   Most of the steep upper forested slopes and their forested headwater streams are found within the Elliott State Forest and are managed by the Oregon Department of Forestry.  The Elliott State Forest covers approximately 33.6 square miles (21,504 acres), making the State the largest single landowner within the watershed.  Privately owned forestland covers approximately 23.2 square miles (14,837 acres). 

    The largest landowner within the privately owned section is Menasha Corp. with approximately 11.4 square miles (7,296 acres).  Roseburg Lumber manages approximately 4.3 square miles (2,752 acres).  The remaining forestland is owned by small timber companies and private parties.

    Most agricultural land found within the watershed is located on the alluvial areas associated with the lower reaches of the six major headwater tributaries  flowing into North Tenmile and Tenmile Lakes.  There is approximately 2.8 square miles (1,792 acres) of farmland in use today within the watershed.  Most agricultural land within the watershed is used for grazing cattle and other livestock.   There are an estimated 338 acres of wetlands between the elevations of 6.5í and 12.5í within the watershed.  A study of the wetlands in the area was conducted in 1995, and in TLBP's Watershed Assessment in 2002, that discussed other wetland areas in the separate subbasins.

 

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