Sturgeon River (Houghton County, Michigan)

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Sturgeon River
Country United States
Physical characteristics
Main source Baraga County, Michigan
46°35′12″N 88°16′05″W / 46.5866°N 88.2681°W / 46.5866; -88.2681[1]
River mouth Portage Lake, Michigan
47°02′06″N 88°29′18″W / 47.0349°N 88.4884°W / 47.0349; -88.4884Coordinates: 47°02′06″N 88°29′18″W / 47.0349°N 88.4884°W / 47.0349; -88.4884
Length 106 mi (171 km)
Type Wild, Scenic
Designated March 3, 1992

Sturgeon River is a 106-mile-long (171 km)[2] river in Baraga County and Houghton counties in the U.S. state of Michigan. 25.0 miles (40.2 km) of the river were added to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System in 1992.[3]


The Sturgeon River rises on the glacially-eroded plateau that forms much of southern Baraga County. Flowing westward through the Copper Country State Forest, it enters the Ottawa National Forest north of Watton.[3] The 25.0-mile (40.2 km) length of the river's course in this national forest has been listed as a wild and scenic river, with 16.5 miles (26.6 km) designated as wild and 8.5 miles (13.7 km) as scenic. On this stretch, which crosses and recrosses the border between Baraga County and Houghton County, the river helps to form the Sturgeon River Gorge Wilderness and flows over Sturgeon Falls.[4]

After leaving the Ottawa National Forest west of Baraga, Sturgeon River flows northward, again crossing and recrossing the Baraga–Houghton County line and running generally parallel to the western shore of Keweenaw Bay. The river discharges into Portage Lake near Chassell, Michigan.[3]

The Wild and Scenic portion of the Sturgeon River, within the Ottawa National Forest, is classified as a Blue Ribbon Trout Stream.[5]


  1. ^ "Sturgeon River". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed January 3, 2012
  3. ^ a b c Michigan Atlas and Gazetteer (10th ed.). Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. 2002.
  4. ^ "Sturgeon River - Ottawa National Forest". United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Retrieved 2011-02-11.
  5. ^ "Michigan's Wild and Scenic Rivers". Retrieved 2011-02-11.