Cabin John Creek

Coordinates: 38°58′11″N 77°08′47″W / 38.969833°N 77.146368°W / 38.969833; -77.146368
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cabin John Creek
Cabin John Creek near Rockville, Maryland
Cabin John Creek is located in Maryland
Cabin John Creek
Mouth of Cabin John Creek
CountryUnited States
CountyMontgomery County
Physical characteristics
 • locationRockville
 • coordinates39°04′33″N 77°09′12″W / 39.0759418°N 77.1533132°W / 39.0759418; -77.1533132
MouthPotomac River
 • location
Glen Echo
 • coordinates
38°58′11″N 77°08′47″W / 38.969833°N 77.146368°W / 38.969833; -77.146368
 • elevation
56 ft (17 m)[1]
Length10.9 mi (17.5 km)
Basin size26 sq mi (67 km2)
Basin features
River systemPotomac River

Cabin John Creek is a tributary stream of the Potomac River in Montgomery County, Maryland. The watershed covers an area of 26 square miles (67 km2). The headwaters of the creek originate in the city of Rockville, and the creek flows southward for 10.9 miles (17.5 km)[2] to the Potomac River.[3]


Union Arch Bridge (Cabin John Bridge) in the 1880s

Early land records in 1715 cite Captain John's Run, now Cabin John Creek. The toponym "Cabin John" is thought to be a corruption of the name "Captain John", but the origin of the name remains unresolved.[4]


The headwaters of the creek originate in the city of Rockville. The Cabin John Stream Valley Trail[5] follows the course of the creek for 8.8 miles (14.2 km), passing through Cabin John Regional Park[6] and Cabin John Local Park.[7] The Union Arch Bridge carries MacArthur Boulevard and the Washington Aqueduct over the stream about 1/4 mile before the creek flows through a culvert under the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal and empties into the Potomac River near Cabin John, Maryland.

Water pollution[edit]

The Cabin John Creek watershed is highly developed, and as a result the water quality in the creek main stem and several tributaries is degraded.[8] Montgomery County Government is implementing a long-term plan to improve water quality throughout the area, including stormwater management and stream restoration projects.[9] As of 2021 the county has installed restoration projects on the Booze Creek and Buck Branch tributaries.[10][11]

Tributaries of Cabin John Creek[edit]

Listed from south to north:

  • Booze Creek[10]
  • Thomas Branch (also called Beltway Branch and Thomas Run)
  • Ken Branch
  • Buck Branch[11]
  • Congressional Branch
  • Snakeden Branch (also called Snake Den Branch)
  • Old Farm Creek
  • Bogley Branch

See also[edit]


  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cabin John Creek
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map Archived 2012-03-29 at the Wayback Machine, accessed August 15, 2011
  3. ^ "Cabin John Creek Profile" (PDF). Rockville, MD: Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (MCDEP). February 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-04-03.
  4. ^ Welles, Judith (2008). Cabin John: Legends and Life of an Uncommon Place. Cabin John, MD: Cabin John Citizens Association. ISBN 978-0-615-21117-6.
  5. ^ "Cabin John Creek Trail Map". Montgomery County Parks. Archived from the original on February 26, 2021. Retrieved May 19, 2021.
  6. ^ "Cabin John Regional Park". Montgomery County Parks. Retrieved May 19, 2021.
  7. ^ "Cabin John Creek". Montgomery County Parks. Archived from the original on 2019-01-07.
  8. ^ "The Cabin John Creek Watershed". MCDEP. 2012. Archived from the original on 2012-05-16.
  9. ^ "Cabin John Creek Watershed". MCDEP. 2015. Archived from the original on 2015-09-25.
  10. ^ a b "Lower Booze Creek Stream Restoration". Restoration Projects. MCDEP. Retrieved 2021-12-30.
  11. ^ a b "Fox Hills of Potomac and Pine Knolls Stormwater Pond Improvements". MCDEP. 2013. Buck Branch tributary.

External links[edit]