The Eld and Totten Inlet watersheds are similar to the Budd and Henderson Inlet watersheds, in that they contain vast miles of marine shoreline, with relatively small creeks that drain directly to Puget Sound. However, these watersheds differ from the lands that drain to Budd and Henderson in terms of land use. The Eld and Totten watersheds are much more rural in character, with commercial forestry as the dominant land use in the upper watersheds.
The southernmost portion of Eld Inlet is also the southernmost point of Puget Sound, known locally as Mud Bay. You have may heard the phrase “Puget Sound starts here”. When you drive by Mud Bay on Highway 101, you can reflect on the fact that Puget Sound literally starts right there – at Mud Bay. From your car, you can enjoy the protected shorelines of Randall Preserve, McLane Point Preserve, Triple Creek Farm Conservation Easement and Lower Eld Estuary Preserve.
In 2009, the Griffin Neighborhood Association and Capitol Land Trust formed the Steamboat Conservation Partnership, a unique collaboration to help conserve special natural areas in the Steamboat Peninsula region. Since this collaboration took effect, we have been able to protect more than 300 acres in the Steamboat Peninsula region.
In total, Capitol Land Trust and our partners have conserved more than 1,050 acres across 14 sites around Eld and Totten Inlets, including 7 miles of marine shoreline, and 7.4 miles of freshwater shoreline. The majority of this freshwater shoreline consists of Upper Schneider Creek, and the smaller streams that feed it, as they flow through the Wynne Tree Farm Conservation Easement.