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Encyclopedia > Big River (Missouri)
Dam at Cedar Hill, Missouri, on the Big River
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Dam at Cedar Hill, Missouri, on the Big River

Contents


Location

The Big River is a tributary of the Meramec River in east-central Missouri. The river rises in western Iron County, near the summit of Johnson Mountain and the locale of Enough; it flows through Washington County, Saint Francois County, and Jefferson County. It forms part of the boundary between Jefferson County and Saint Francois County and also part of the boundary between Jefferson County and Washington County. It empties into the Meramec River, opposite Eureka, where the Meramec forms the border between Jefferson County and Saint Louis County. The river flows through Washington State Park, St. Francois State Park, and the Lead Belt mining district. The elevation of the river at its source is approximately 1300 feet above sea level and at its mouth about 400 feet. The length of the river is approximately 142 miles, while the airline distance between source and mouth is about 56 miles. Its watershed area is 955 square miles. The Meramec River Looking North from Route 66 State Park The Meramec River is the longest free-flowing waterway in Missouri -- it wanders some 350 kilometers (220 miles) through six Missouri Ozark Highland counties: Dent, Phelps, Crawford, Franklin, Jefferson, and St. ... Missouri, named after the Missouri Siouan Indian tribe meaning canoe, is a Southern state in the United States with Jefferson City as its capital. ... Iron County is a county located in the state of Missouri. ... Washington County is a county located in the state of Missouri. ... St. ... Jefferson County is a county located in the state of Missouri, and included the mean center of U.S. population in 1980. ... The Meramec River Looking North from Route 66 State Park The Meramec River is the longest free-flowing waterway in Missouri -- it wanders some 350 kilometers (220 miles) through six Missouri Ozark Highland counties: Dent, Phelps, Crawford, Franklin, Jefferson, and St. ... Eureka is a city located in St. ... Jefferson County is a county located in the state of Missouri, and included the mean center of U.S. population in 1980. ... Map of Missouri highlighting St. ...


The river flows though the communites of Belgrade, Irondale, Park Hills, Morse Mill, Cedar Hill, Byrnesville, and Byrnes Mill. Irondale is a city located in Washington County, Missouri. ... Park Hills is a city located in St. ... Cedar Hill is a census-designated place located in Jefferson County, Missouri. ... Byrnes Mill is a city located in Jefferson County, Missouri. ...


Tributaries of Big River include Flat River, Belew Creek, Turkey Creek, Mill Creek, Mineral Fork, Calico Creek, and Jones Creek


Character of the river

Like many other Ozark streams, the Big River has entrenched meanders; its valley is typically about half a mile wide, sometimes much narrower, and the valley is usually between 150 and 400 feet deep. This indicates that this river formed on a plain near sea level, which give the river is meandering nature, and then was subsequently uplifted, causing entrenchment. Ozark redirects here. ... An entrenched river is a river that is confined to a canyon or gorge, usually with a relatively narrow width and little or no flood plain, and often with meanders worn into the landscape. ...


About 83 miles are navigable; however, the remains of five small mill dams makes portage neccessary, due to drops of several feet or high turbulence. Otherwise, the river is gentle for canoeing, with a Class I difficulty rating. Public parks are adjacent to most of these dams, and are popular fishing spots. Due to steady infeed of springwater, this river is navigable in all seasons. Portage refers to the practice of carrying a canoe or other boat overland land to avoid an obstacle on the water route (such as rapids in a river), or between two water routes. ...


Major pollution sources near Park Hills are due to historic mining activies, which including erosion from mine tailings piles and leaking mine dams.


Major gamefish commonly found in the river include Largemouth bass, Smallmouth bass, Spotted bass, Rock bass, Longear sunfish, Bluegill, Channel catfish, Flathead catfish, and Redhorse suckers. Binomial name Micropterus salmoides (Lacépède, 1802) The largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) is a species of freshwater fish in the sunfish family (Centrarchidae) of order Perciformes. ... Binomial name Micropterus dolomieu Lacépède, 1802 The smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu) is a species of freshwater fish in the sunfish family (Centrarchidae) of order Perciformes. ... Binomial name Micropterus punctulatus (Rafinesque, 1819) The spotted bass (Micropterus punctulatus) is a species of freshwater fish in the sunfish family (Centrarchidae) of order Perciformes. ... Binomial name Ambloplites rupestris (Rafinesque, 1817) The rock bass (Ambloplites rupestris) is a species of freshwater fish in the sunfish family (Centrarchidae) of order Perciformes. ... Binomial name Lepomis megalotis (Rafinesque, 1820) The longear sunfish (Lepomis megalotis) is a species of freshwater fish in the sunfish family (family Centrarchidae) of order Perciformes. ... Binomial name Lepomis macrochirus Rafinesque, 1819 The bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus) is a species of freshwater fish. ... Binomial name Ictalurus punctatus (Rafinesque, 1818) Channel catfish {Ictalurus punctatus) are North Americas most popular catfish species among anglers. ... Binomial name Pylodictis olivaris (Rafinesque, 1818) The Flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris), also called the yellow cat, opelousas, mud cat and shovelhead cat, are large North American freshwater catfish. ...


Miscellaneous

  • This river is the namesake of Big River Township in Jefferson County.
  • According to the National Weather Service, the maximum flood stage of the Big River at Byrnesville occurred on August 21, 1915, and was 30.20 feet, with a flow of roughly 80,000 cubic feet per second. Flood stage at Byrnesville is 16 feet. The lowest flow measured, 25 cubic feet per second, was recorded on August 30, 1936. The average annual discharge here is 862 cubic feet per second. August is the month with the lowest average flow, while April has the highest average flow.

The National Weather Service (NWS) is one of the six scientific agencies comprising the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). ...

See also

Big River may refer to: Up to seven rivers named the Big River in Alaska in the United States The Big River in California in the United States. ... This is a list of rivers in the U.S. state of Missouri: Black River Blackwater River Blue River Bourbeuse River Castor River Chariton River Cuivre River Current River Des Moines River Eleven Point River Fabius River Fox River Gasconade River Grand River Horse River Lamine River Little River Little...

External links

  • Big River canoeing information
  • More Big River canoeing information
  • Big River flood stage information
  • A Paddlers Guide to Missouri
  • Big River watershed inventory and assement, from the Missouri Department of Conservation

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