The Lytles Fork &
Eagle Creek watershed covers northern Scott County and adjoining edges of Owen
and Grant Counties. The land is in the hills of the bluegrass subregion of the
Bluegrass physiographic region, characterized by hilly terrain, very rapid
surface runoff, and slow groundwater drainage. The watershed lies mainly above
interbedded limestones and shales (>20% limestone, allowing groundwater flow
where the clay content is low enough). Some of the watershed lies above thick
layers of easily dissolved limestone that form carbonate aquifers: groundwater
flows through channels in the limestone, so caves and springs are common in
regions with this geology.
Waterways. This watershed constitutes the headwaters region of Eagle
Creek. Lytles Fork and Eagle Creek join just over the Scott County line in Owen
County, at which point the Eagle Creek (upper) watershed begins. Among the
creeks that feed Lytles Fork are Griffith Branch, Hess Branch, Longlick Branch,
and Little Indian Branch. Among the creeks that feed Eagle Creek in this
watershed are Muddy Branch, Sharon Branch, Rogers Creek, West Fork Eagle Creek,
East Fork Eagle Creek, Straight Fork, Hall Branch, Little Eagle Creek, Mile Run,
and Rays Fork.
Land and water use. Land in the watershed is more than 50%
agricultural and more than 40% rural and wooded. Ten businesses and
organizations hold permits for discharges into the creeks. See tables for
Agency data assessment. The assessed segment of Eagle Creek fully
supports its designated uses, based on biological and/or water-quality data. The
assessed segment of Lytles Fork only partially supports its designated uses,
based on biological and/or water-quality data. Habitat alteration contributes to
the impairment of the stream. See tables for details.
Watershed rankings. The ranking formula provides a preliminary
ranking by synthesizing a broad spectrum of watershed characteristics, current
conditions, and threats. This watershed ranks in the group with the lowest need
for protection and/or restoration. This rating is for the watershed on average:
particular sites and particular waters within the watershed may vary widely. See
tables for details.
Volunteer data. Data for East Fork Eagle Creek show elevated
concentrations of iron and selenium. Data for West Fork Eagle Creek show
elevated concentrations of selenium. Phosphorus levels at both sites were
elevated enough to cause potential nutrient enrichment problems (> 0.1 mg/L).
See tables for details.