Williams River (West Virginia)

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Coordinates: 38°23′06″N 80°30′48″W / 38.38500°N 80.51333°W / 38.38500; -80.51333
Williams River
River
Williams River-27527.jpg
Williams River in the Monongahela National Forest.
Country United States
State West Virginia
Counties Pocahontas, Webster
Source Beaverdam Run [1]
 - location Day Mountain, Pocahontas County, WV
 - elevation 3,892 ft (1,186 m) [2]
 - coordinates 38°14′47″N 80°09′54″W / 38.24639°N 80.16500°W / 38.24639; -80.16500
Secondary source Downy Run [3]
 - location Day Mountain, Pocahontas County, WV
 - elevation 3,975 ft (1,212 m) [4]
 - coordinates 38°14′03″N 80°09′32″W / 38.23417°N 80.15889°W / 38.23417; -80.15889
Source confluence [5]
 - location Pocahontas County, WV
 - elevation 3,448 ft (1,051 m) [1]
 - coordinates 38°13′43″N 80°01′10″W / 38.22861°N 80.01944°W / 38.22861; -80.01944
Mouth Gauley River [5]
 - location Donaldson, WV
 - elevation 2,169 ft (661 m)
 - coordinates 38°23′06″N 80°30′48″W / 38.38500°N 80.51333°W / 38.38500; -80.51333
Length 33 mi (53 km)
Basin 132 sq mi (342 km2)
Discharge for Dyer, WV
 - average 30 cu ft/s (1 m3/s) [6]
 - max 1,840 cu ft/s (52 m3/s) (1971)
 - min 0.62 cu ft/s (0 m3/s) (1995)

The Williams River is a tributary of the Gauley River, 33 miles (53 km) long,[7] in east-central West Virginia, USA. Via the Gauley, Kanawha and Ohio Rivers, it is part of the watershed of the Mississippi River, draining an area of 132 square miles (342 km²) in a sparsely populated region of the southern Allegheny Mountains and the unglaciated portion of the Allegheny Plateau.[7][8]

Name[edit]

The river has also been known historically as the South Fork of the Gauley River[5] In Webster County, it collects a short tributary known as the Middle Fork Williams River,[9] which itself collects the North Branch Middle Fork Williams River.[10]

Geography[edit]

The Williams River rises in southern Pocahontas County, approximately 5 miles (8 km) west of Marlinton, and flows initially northwardly, then westwardly into southern Webster County, where it joins the Gauley River approximately 2 miles (3 km) southeast of Cowen.[8] It flows for much of its length in the Monongahela National Forest, including the Cranberry Wilderness, in an area that was heavily logged in the early 20th century and has since been reforested. Coal mining activity took place along the river's lower course into the 1970s.[7]

Fishing[edit]

The Williams River is regarded as one of the five best trout fishing streams in West Virginia,[7] due to its cold water temperature, low turbidity, and frequent stockings of trout (amounting to 27,000 pounds annually) by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Beaverdam Run". Geographic Names Information System, U.S. Geological Survey. 1980-06-27. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 
  2. ^ "USGS Elevation Web Service for -80.165, -38.246389". U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 
  3. ^ U.S. Geological Survey (1995). Hillsboro, West Virginia quadrangle (Map). 1:24,000. 7.5-Minute Series (Topographic). ISBN 978-0-607-90769-8.
  4. ^ "USGS Elevation Web Service for -80.1589, -38.23409". U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 
  5. ^ a b c "Williams River". Geographic Names Information System, U.S. Geological Survey. 1980-06-27. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 
  6. ^ "USGS Gage #03186500 on Williams River at Dyer, WV". National Water Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-09-13. 
  7. ^ a b c d McNeel, William P. "Williams River." The West Virginia Encyclopedia. Ken Sullivan, editor. Charleston, WV: West Virginia Humanities Council. 2006. ISBN 0-9778498-0-5.
  8. ^ a b DeLorme (1997). West Virginia Atlas & Gazetteer. Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. ISBN 0-89933-246-3.
  9. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Middle Fork Williams River
  10. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: North Branch Middle Fork Williams River
  11. ^ Monongahela National Forest: Williams River Retrieved on March 14, 2013.