Annual discharge from Beaver Creek basin is estimated to have averaged 217,000 acre-feet during a 19-year base period, water years 1938-56, equivalent to an average annual runoff depth of 4.7 inches over the 857 square-mile drainage area. About 55,000 acre-feet per year comes from Little Beaver Creek basin, a tributary drainage of 195 square miles.
Yearly streamflow is highly variable. The discharge of Little Beaver Creek near Duncan during 13-year period of record (water years 1949-61) has ranged from 86,530 acre-feet in calendar year 1957 to 4,880 acre-feet in 1956, a ratio of almost 18 to 1.
Highest runoff within a year tends to occur in the spring months of May and June, a 2-month period that, on the average, accounts for more than half of the annual discharge of Little Beaver Creek near Duncan. The average monthly runoff during record was lowest in January. Variation in daily streamflow is such that while the average discharge for the 13-year period of record was 50.1 cfs (cubic feet per second), the daily discharge was more than 6 cfs only about half of the time. There was no flow at the site 19 percent of the time during the period.
Some base runoff usually exists in the headwaters of Beaver and Little Beaver Creeks, and in the lower reaches of Beaver Creek. Low flow in Cow Creek tends to be sustained by waste water from Duncan, where water use in 1961 averaged 4 million gallons per day. In the remainder of the basin, periods of no flow occur in most years.
The surface water of Beaver Creek basin is very hard but in general is usable for municipal, agricultural and industrial purposes. The chemical character of the water is predominantly a calcium, magnesium bicarbonate type of water in the lower three quarters of the basin, except in Cow Creek where oil-field brines induce a distinct sodium, calcium chloride characteristic at low and medium flows. A calcium sulfate type of water occurs in most of the northern part of the basin except in headwater areas underlain by the Rush Springs Sandstone, where quality is similar to that in the lower basin.
The report gives an estimate of the average discharge at several sites in Beaver Creek basin for a 19-year base period, October 1937 to September 1956. Duration curves of daily discharge for Little Beaver Creek near Duncan and Beaver Creek near Waurika are shown for the period of record. Monthly and annual discharge records for these gaging stations are presented. The results of 52 discharge measurements at 17 other sites in the basin are tabulated, with 5 groups being plotted as discharge profiles. Storage requirements for regulated discharge at the two gaging stations are shown.
(available as photostat copy only)