North River (Cacapon River)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
North River
North River North River Mills WV 2005 09 19 11.jpg
Bridge over the North River near North River Mills
Origin South Branch Mountain, Hardy County, West Virginia
Mouth Cacapon River at Forks of Cacapon, Hampshire County, West Virginia
Basin countries United States
Length 52 miles (84 km)
Basin area 206 sq mi (530 km2)

North River is a tributary of the Cacapon River, belonging to the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay watersheds. The river is located in Hampshire and Hardy counties in the U.S. state of West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle. The mouth of North River into the Cacapon is located at Forks of Cacapon. From its headwaters to its mouth, the North River spans 52.4 miles (84.3 km) in length.[1]

Headwaters and course[edit]

South Branch Mountain to Rio[edit]

North River's headwaters comprise two streams that converge in the southeastern hollows of South Branch Mountain (3028 ft) in Hardy County. From its source, the river flows east through the communities of Inkerman and Rock Oak along North River Road (County Route 1) where it is joined by Grassy Lick Run. North River continues to flow east as a shallow stony stream and after it passes through a gap in Short Mountain (2864 ft), it acts as the border between Hardy and Hampshire counties. It is in this stretch that the river is home to the Rio Turtle, a large turtle-shaped rock painted to resemble a turtle. The river then enters exclusively into Hampshire County where it meets the community of Rio and Sperry Run, which flows in from the south.

Rio to Forks of Cacapon[edit]

At Rio (pronounced RYE-O), North River makes a ninety-degree bend and flows north into the wide fertile North River Valley along North River Mountain (2149 ft). Also beginning at Rio, North River parallels West Virginia Route 29 (Delray Road). On its journey northward, North River is fed from the west by Deep Run and Mick Run, which drain off of Short Mountain. Further north along WV 29, the river passes through the communities of Delray and Sedan at Pearl Ridge (1302 ft). Departing from Sedan, North River flows under the Northwestern Turnpike (U.S. Route 50) at Hanging Rock and winds its way northward around North River Mountain. Pine Draft Run and Tearcoat Creek join the river south of Hoy before the river bends yet again and joins Gibbons Run. Flowing through the historic village of North River Mills, North River is joined by Hiett's Run, which flows from the eastern side of Ice Mountain (1489 ft). After North River Mills, the river makes a sharp linear curve around the Devil's Backbone (856 ft) and then commences its movement northward along Pine Mountain (1726 ft). North River crosses under the Bloomery Pike (West Virginia Route 127) and is then joined from the west by Crooked Run before flowing under Gaston Road's one-lane bridge and finally arriving at its confluence with the Cacapon River at Forks of Cacapon.

History[edit]

Since the early settlement of Hampshire County, the North River had been considered unnavigable by locals and experts alike. While groups of Native Americans probably used the river to transport meat to Ice Mountain, the first known African-American party to successfully float it did so under the direction of the renowned forester and naturalist Paul Bogdan. His group of men, who hailed from nearby New Creek, began their journey at RiverBend Farms and made it to the river's confluence with the Cacapon. Inspired by their feat, one member of Bogdan's crew wrote "Floated from North River Road ford just before the road joins Springfield Grade Road to Rt. 127 on May 24, 2008 when the water level in the Cacapon River was at 4.0 - 3.5 feet. Wonderful scenery, very little development, Ice Mountain nature preserve borders the river for about a mile. Not sure of the climbing possibilities of Ice Mountain, but it does appear to be white/gray Tuscarora quartzite same as Seneca Rocks/The Narrows with some pink quartzite boulders in the water as you float."

Gallery[edit]

Bridges[edit]

Bridge Route Location
Bridge at Skagg's Run CR 1/5 Inkerman
Bridge North River Road (CR 1) Inkerman
Bridge North River Road (CR 1) Rock Oak
Rock Oak Bridge Rock Oak Road Rock Oak
Bridge at Waterlick Run CR 1/1 Rock Oak
North River Bridge Augusta-Ford Hill Road (CR 53) Rio
Upper Mullins Road Bridge Mullins Road (off CR 53) Rio
Lower Mullins Road Bridge Mullins Road (off CR 53) Rio
Rio WV 29 Bridge Delray Road (WV 29) Rio
Sedan WV 29 Bridge Delray Road (WV 29) Sedan
Sedan School Road Bridge Sedan School Road (CR 11/1) Sedan
Hanging Rock Bridge Northwestern Turnpike (US 50/WV 29) Hanging Rock
One-Lane Double Arch Bridge Cold Stream Road (CR 45/20) North River Mills
North River WV 127 Bridge Bloomery Pike (WV 127) Forks of Cacapon
One-Lane Arch Bridge Gaston Road (CR 45/7) Forks of Cacapon

Tributaries[edit]

Grassy Lick Run in Kirby.

Tributary streams are listed in order from south (source) to north (mouth).

  • Skaggs Run
  • Pot Lick Run
    • Horn Camp Run
  • Waterlick Run
  • Grassy Lick Run
  • Meadow Run
  • Sperry Run
  • Deep Run
  • Lick Run
  • Elkhorn Run
  • Hanging Rock Run
    • Stuart Hollow Run
    • Henderson Hollow Run
  • Pine Draft Run
  • Tearcoat Creek
  • Gibbons Run
  • Maple Run
  • Hiett Run
    • Riggs Hollow Run
  • Crooked Run
  • Castle Run

List of cities and towns along the North River[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed August 15, 2011

External links[edit]

Media related to North River (Cacapon River) at Wikimedia Commons