Talk:Continental Divide of the Americas

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Merger suggestion[edit]

Continental Divide and continental divide should be merged.

No. I think one is about the general idea of continental divides and the other is about the Continental Divide, a specific one in North America. Do any other continents refer to their continental divides as the Continental Divide? Where are the others for that matter? Rmhermen 21:09, Oct 7, 2003 (UTC)
Where I'm from it's called a watershed (which is then used as a metaphor for the time after which a TV Channel is allowed to show (in)decent films). What you seem to be calling a watershed, I'd call a basin. 19:02, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Move suggestions[edit]

Should this be moved to North American continental divide? --SPUI (talk) 21:02, 2 November 2005 (UTC)

I would support that proposal. Currently, the two articles have identical titles, apart from Divide being capitalised in one but not the other. This could make it confusing and difficult to tell them apart. Ygoloxelfer 17:07, 26 May 2007 (UTC)
I agree. This article is about a specific one and should be named more appropriately. --Appraiser 04:11, 27 May 2007 (UTC)
National Atlas deprecates the use of Continental Divide to refer to it, and suggests Great Divide instead.[1] Great Divide is in common usage as the name for this divide and would avoid the confusion (and possible chauvinism) of referring to one of many continental divides as the Continental Divide. Great Divide is also preferable to North American continental divide (which probably should be a WP:DAB page) as even under the most restrictive definition of continental divide there is more than one of them in North America, as waters flow to three oceans. Kablammo 10:55, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Weak Map[edit]

The map that goes with this article, while colorful, could be replaced with something better. For one thing, the depiction of the Great Basin in the map contradicts the explanation in the article (and the article, I believe, is correct). Unschool 22:42, 1 October 2005 (UTC)

You seem to be confusing the Great Basin and Great Divide Basin. --SPUI (talk) 21:03, 2 November 2005 (UTC)

  • strange map... It appears Oak Park, IL is the only city in N. America worth noting? My family that lives there will be thrilled to find this out; all this time they thought their only claim to fame was the Frank Lloyd Wright homes. —Preceding unsigned comment added by DLuber1 (talkcontribs) 19:12, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Triple Point[edit]

As the "triple point" link goes to a discussion of the chemical sense of the word, and "Triple Point (Geography)" seems like a really silly additional article, I'm removing the link to "Triple Point." I think an uninitiated reader can get the sense of the word in context, and would be even more confused by an unrelated discussion of the chemistry application of "triple point." (see the discussion page for the "Triple Point" article) Yale2010 02:07, 1 April 2006 (UTC)


This article say the great basin divide is in/around Wyoming, but on the map it appears to be northern California and/or part of Utah... Super Jedi Droid 02:05, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

The Great Basin, which is shown on the map, is not the same as the Great Divide Basin, which is not shown on the map. Nationalparks 02:20, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

I would also add that Gray's Peak is not the highest peak on the North American Continental Divide. The Mountains of the Sawatch range are higher. Mt Elbert is the highest peak in the rockies at 14,440ft, a part of the Sawatch Range and is the highest peak on the Continental Divide in North America. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:16, 9 April 2013 (UTC)

Proposed Move[edit]

I propose to move this article to Great Divide over redirect.

  1. There is another article entitled Continental divide, which differs from this one only in the capitalization of the second word. This could lead to confusion, yet the other article is clearly necessary as it refers to all continental divides.
  2. As mentioned above, the National Atlas deprecates the use of Continental Divide to refer to the cordilleran divide, and suggests Great Divide.[2] Great Divide is in common usage as the name for this divide.
  3. The move would avoid the confusion (and possible chauvinism) of referring to one of many continental divides as the Continental Divide.
  4. Great Divide is also preferable to North American continental divide (which probably should be a WP:DAB page) as even under the most restrictive definition of continental divide there is more than one of them in North America, as waters flow to three oceans.

If no objection is made to this proposal within 7 days I will implement the move. Please discuss below. Kablammo 22:09, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Support as proposer, for reasons set forth above. Kablammo 22:09, 21 October 2007 (UTC)
  • Support - I've been thinking for a long time that something needs to be done about this. Thanks for making the effort.--Appraiser 18:25, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

As there is no opposition, the redirect will be made. There are a large number of links which need to be changed. I will not be able to devote a lot of time to that right away. Kablammo 12:07, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

Sorry, I just noticed this discussion. "Great Divide" is not a good name, because there is another geographical feature with the same name which is referred to as often, or perhaps more often, by that name. Try the Google Scholar search ["great divide" drainage | catchment | watershed | river-system], and you'll see that the Australian Great Divide is more commonly mentioned than the North American one. Try the same search on Clusty and note that "Australia" comes up as one of the clusters. Given Wikipedia's policy of Wikipedia:WikiProject Countering systemic bias, it seems that we should have Great Divide (North America) or Continental divide (North America) and Great Divide (Australia). --Macrakis —Preceding comment was added at 15:09, 31 October 2007 (UTC)
Agreed. I'll refrain from making a move for a little while to give time for more comments. Kablammo 15:15, 31 October 2007 (UTC)
A few more points:
  1. WP isn't supposed to correct arguably illogical terminology, but to report on it. Compare jellyfish, for example.
  2. WP is certainly not supposed to distort the names of things in order to disambiguate them; we use parenthetical categories for that.
  3. It appears that "Continental Divide" is far more common than "Great Divide". I used the query ["great divide" drainage | catchment | watershed | river-system -australia pacific atlantic] and the same with "continental divide" on Google, Google Scholar, and Google Books, and "continental" is much more common on all three, despite the possible confusion with the metaphorical term "great divide". WP policy generally prefers the most common name recognized by the general public, even if specialists may prefer another name.
  4. The article cited above as evidence that the National Atlas "deprecates" the term Continental Divide is an article with strongly stated personal opinions ("one of my favorite spots"; "the definition I have adopted herein"; etc.) and does not seem to reflect official National Atlas editorial policy. Indeed, the National Atlas's page on the topic has "Continental Divide" as the principal title, and only mentions "Great Divide" as an alternate name.
Hope this is useful.... --Macrakis 04:48, 1 November 2007 (UTC)
Your points are of course useful. I took the liberty of numbering them so as to reply.
  1. Agreed. The problem here is one of distinguishing between uses of a generic term which some also use as a proper name of one member of the genus.
  2. The use of Great Divide would not a distortion; it is in common usage. (Google returns 200,000 hits for Rocky OR Rockies "Great Divide".[3])
  3. Is there a way for search engines to distinguish between the use of the term continental divide in a generic sense and a use as a proper name? I do not believe that Google searches distinguish between capitalized terms and uncapitalized terms. (The same number of results are returned by searches for Continental Divide as continental divide.) Often one only knows what divide is meant by context; as the cordilleran divide was more signficant in the development of the US it is not surprising that continental divide is a common term, but we do not know how often that term is used as a proper name. (And the presence of articles on Wikipedia itself influences the results of Google searches.)
  4. Thank you for delving further into the National Atlas page. It does not however resolve the issue of what name should be used here.
To most US residents (aside from a few folks in the northern woods and plains) continental divide means the Rockies. But it is not the only one. Kablammo 11:56, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Sidebar: we have the same issue with twin cities and Twin Cities. In the U.S., Twin Cities overwhelmingly refers to Minneapolis-St. Paul, but the generic term (not-capitalized) has other uses, and world-wide "Twin Cities" has other uses too. My tactic has been to replace Twin Cities with Twin Cities so that the link doesn't rely on the the U.S.-centric view. I have been reprimanded for making that change (see User talk:Appraiser/Archive3#Avoiding redirects), but I still think it's a good idea. In this case, I would suggest Moving the article to Continental Divide (Rocky Mountains) and then changing all relevant occurrences of Continental Divide to Continental Divide. Then the generic "continental divide" works and the Australian and other divides can have their equivalent article names without interference.--Appraiser 13:15, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

2. It is a "distortion" in the sense that it is choosing a considerably less common term (about 2x more hits with [Rocky OR Rockies "continental divide"] as with your query), but as you point out (see 3) this includes the generic use (e.g. "there is a continental divide in the Rockies"), but eyeballing the results, this doesn't look very common. And in the case of "great divide", we have the generic, non-geographic sense ("the great divide between the urban and rural populations of India").
3. Every Web search engine I know ignores case, which is why you and I are both using terms like "watershed", "Rocky", etc.
4. Agreed that the National Atlas does not resolve the issue. That is up to us.
--Macrakis 14:09, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

It appears we do not have a consensus on this proposal.--Appraiser (talk) 14:21, 20 December 2007 (UTC)

New proposed move[edit]

I propose moving Continental Divide to Continental Divide (Rocky Mountains) with a goal of "piping" links to this article by replacing Continental Divide with [[Continental Divide (Rocky Mountains)|Continental Divide]]--Appraiser (talk) 14:21, 20 December 2007 (UTC)

I would prefer Continental Divide (North America); in particular, I don't think the mountains along which it runs are called the "Rocky Mountains" in Mexico. --Macrakis (talk) 17:26, 20 December 2007 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Ft[edit]

Template:Ft has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. — pete 14:56, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

Image needs replacement[edit]

Hello all...

An image used in the article, specifically Image:Continental Divide in Colorado - July 2005.jpg, has a little bit of a licensing issue. The image was uploaded back when the rules around image uploading were less restrictive. It is presumed that the uploader was willing to license the picture under the GFDL license but was not clear in that regard. As such, the image, while not at risk of deletion, is likely not clearly licensed to allow for free use in any future use of this article. If anyone has an image that can replace this, or can go take one and upload it, it would be best.

You have your mission, take your camera and start clicking.--Jordan 1972 (talk) 00:48, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Hudson, James, and Ungava Bays not "Arctic Ocean"[edit]

This is such a common and entrenched mistake it seems almost impossible to correct, given the amount of curriculum (particularly US curriculum) and publications (particularly US publications) which employ it; I've changed it in this article but it continues to present itself a cross a host of other related articles, e.g. Triple Divide Peak. Can't anyone read maps anymore, or is everything north of the US "the Arctic"....'xcuse me, I have to go throw another block of ice on the igloo....Skookum1 (talk) 04:46, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) Special Publication S-23 3rd Edition 1953 Limits of Oceans and Seas defined Hudson Bay, James Bay, Hudson Strait, and Ungava Bay as extensions of the Arctic Ocean. The Natural Resources Canada Atlas of Canada confirms this definition in the Watersheds of Canada and the Drainage Basins of Canada. The U.S. CIA World Factbook also confirms this definition of the Arctic Ocean (see also the Cross-Reference List of Hydrographic Data Codes.) You may well disagree, but the international consensus seems long settled. --Buaidh (talk) 00:43, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, well, bad sources are bad sources, official or not. See similar/parallel discussion at Talk:Columbia River, and use some common sense, official soruces or not - if the Northwest Passage and Baffin Bay are not part of the Arctic Ocean, who can something on the far side of them from the main body of the Arctic Ocean be part of the Arctic Ocean? Naturual Sciences Canada/Geophysical Survey of Canada sources are more relevant and convincing for locations in Canadian waters anyway; the CIA Factbook has many errors in it about Canada, to me this is just another one; contributors at Talk:Columbia River have also found other materials and pls note Hydrographers and Oceanographers are two different kinds of -graphers, the former is land-based and concerned with watersheds; I'm Canadian and in all my life have never heard Hudson Bay referred to as "the Arctic Ocean", and James Bay is so far south it's barely Subarctic, much less Arctic; if you ask someone in Pangnirtung or Iqaluit (communities on Baffin Island where the Arctic Ocean is, I can guarantee you they won't point at Hudson Bay, much less at the Labrador Sea. Classifications produced by academics in the United States and France may be "official", but that doesn't make them correct for matters of Canadian geography.....Skookum1 (talk) 01:23, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
There are various interpretations of what these various divides are, and naturally the Canadian interpretation varies from the US interpretation. From the Canadian perspective, Hudson Bay is entirely sub-arctic (south of the Arctic Circle) and is a body of water of its own, not part of the Atlantic or Arctic Oceans. In fact, some oceanographers consider the Arctic Ocean to be a mere sea attached to the Atlantic Ocean. What is clear is that the major continental divide in North America is the Great Divide running along the height of the Rocky Mountains separating the Pacific watershed from the Atlantic/Hudson Bay/Gulf of Mexico watersheds. All the other continental divides are minor by comparison, although, just as a matter of interest, the Canadian triple divide point, Snow Dome, is 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) higher than Triple Divide Peak in Montana.RockyMtnGuy (talk) 02:16, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Buaidh, you say that IHO S.P. 23 3rd Edition 1953 "defined" Hudson Bay as an extension of the Arctic Ocean. Can you point out exactly where in that document the definition is made? I've been through it a few times now and I just can't find it. Wikipedia certainly claims in several places that it does. Thanks for the help! Franamax (talk) 02:06, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Interestingly, that document doesn't explicitly say that Hudson Bay is an extension of the Arctic Ocean. So, that appears to be only some peoples interpretation of what it says.RockyMtnGuy (talk) 02:16, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Yes, interesting, isn't that? In fact, the document explicitly says "Oceans exclude the seas lying within each of them". Now one could further interpret by concluding that the adjoining sea must be part of the ocean. By this means, one could conclude that the Gulf of Mexico is part of the Atlantic Ocean, and the Beaufort Sea is part of the Arctic Ocean, even though the document doesn't actually say so. In the case of Hudson Bay though, it doesn't actually adjoin the Arctic Ocean at any single point, whereas it does adjoin the Atlantic. Additionally, it's quite plain that the actual water flowing from the land into Hudson Bay exits to the Atlantic. There's really no doubt of that, as a simple (WP:OR) glance at a map will confirm. I'm at a loss as to where the "definitive" positioning of Hudson Bay within the Arctic Ocean actually comes from. Franamax (talk) 05:14, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

Buiadh, I just looked at the Atlas of Canada "Hudson Bay NT" page - which of its sublinks give its definition as being part of the Arctic Ocean? Like all CanGov sites, it can be hard to penetrate unless by those who programmed it....Skookum1 (talk) 05:52, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

The Canadian government says: "Hudson Bay, James Bay and Ungava Bay are considered to be part of the Arctic Ocean but, for most purposes, their drainage area is usually considered as a separate entity." In other words, Hudson Bay is considered part of the Arctic Ocean, but from the standpoint of determining a continental divide, which is a division between watersheds, it is different from the Arctic Ocean.RockyMtnGuy (talk) 04:50, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I ran this question past Canadian Geographic magazine (the RCGS), their Chief Cartographer talked to one of their Arctic experts. They both "had a hard time thinking it was part of EITHER ocean", and rather than a scientific question "it's more about semantics".
I think that accords well with RMG and several others above - from a watershed point-of-view, Hudson Bay is distinct and we're best off to adopt a neutral statement.
RMG, do you have a weblink for that statement from the GofC? It would be handy for review in the future. Franamax (talk) 01:36, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
It is really a matter of semantics. The web site I was quoting from was The Atlas of Canada - Watersheds Also see Map of Canadian Watersheds The black lines marked "Ocean Watershed Boundary" would be what the article would considered to be continental divides - which is more of an American concept than a Canadian one.RockyMtnGuy (talk) 02:20, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
Wondering if someone had seen anything in related research about this that might help out this guy.Skookum1 (talk) 17:27, 8 February 2009 (UTC)
this reared its head on Triple Divide Peak this morning; see this edit-reversal (by me) overturning complex changes by User:Alpinwolf, who told me to "slow my roll" and assumed by inclusion of Canadian persepctives was somehow anti-American (in the Canadian view, American perspectives are often oblivious to everybody else's). The changes were too complex to re-edit all at once, and constituted a rewrite of the article...exclusion of some material in the rewrite seemed to sweeping, and his re-inclusion of the unproven/uncitable assumption that Hudson Bay "empties into the Arctic Ocean" we've already gone over above....I distrust such "full rewrites" as they're hard to monitor, often uncited/uncitable and also often wipe away other material as if it didn't matter; complex edits are fine if they're integrative, but those that are "exclusionary" prompted me to rejoinder "slow your own roll"....Skookum1 (talk) 13:52, 14 February 2009 (UTC)
There's an assumption that Triple Divide Peak is somehow unique in the world. In fact, topologically speaking, there is a triple divide point wherever two continental divides intersect, so on the map in this article there are at least three triple divide points in the United States, plus Snow Dome in Canada. Snow Dome is definitely higher than the rest - over 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) higher than Triple Divide Peak, definitely gets more precipitation (the Dome, Stutfield, Columbia, and Athabasca Glaciers are there), and is the source of more big rivers (the Columbia, Athabasca and North Saskatchewan Rivers start there), so one would conclude that it is proper to call it the hydrological apex of North America. The assumption that Hudson Bay "empties" into the Arctic Ocean is obviously incorrect, as a quick glance at the map shows that the bulk of the water (and there's a lot of water flowing into Hudson Bay) drains via Hudson Strait into the Labrador Sea. There's only a tenuous connection to the Arctic Ocean proper. These facts should be brought out in the respective articles.RockyMtnGuy (talk) 21:12, 14 February 2009 (UTC)
I've reverted Alpinwolf [4], in particular (though not solely) because they are including a broken link to a putative source referring the IHO 3rd version of Limits of Oceans and Sea as putting Hudson Bay in the Arctic Ocean. I've been up and down that international agreement, it's been discussed all over the place, no-one has yet shown where exactly this supposed placement is. Franamax (talk) 22:01, 16 February 2009 (UTC)
There's a similar re-insertion on Triple Divide Peak, can't remember by who but it was a re-reversal after a more lengthy, complicated edit; essentially the same claim/cite but I didn't feel like being disputatious at the time and so didn't revert it again. I'm trying to be productive elsewhere rather than "negatory" on this issue too often :-). Would you mind making the other correction...I mean, what do we do when soembody insists a cite says something when it actually doesn't?....Interestingly, somewhere along the way somebody was trying to find the name of a body of water in the middle of the ARctic Archipeago...can't no which page....but it had none; perhaps on WikiProject Canada's talkpage, I think. It had none, as in not being part of anocean, though of course the cite dien't exist so couldn't say " body of water is not aprt of any oceran". but if a body of water in between dson Bay and the ARctic Ocean isn't parto f hte Arcitc Oceran, or any ocean, how can Hudson Bay be part of the ARcc, despite scores of intervening waterways.Skookum1 (talk) 01:20, 17 February 2009 (UTC)
Gentle-peoples, I wish I'd know of this Talk thread, but I didn't look under this article. Skookum, my apologies if I've offended. This topic of the divides and peaks is not a hot button for me, but I suppose I took umbrage with how I perceived the tone of the several edits-in-a-row and their comments, as the rapid-fire timing of those edit posts left no room for response. I'm more than happy to leave the semantics of which peak triple-divides what, and of how the estuary waters of Hudson Bay are classified, to the ages, but I do have a problem with some of the reactions. I guess I feel burned, but in looking at why I find it is not from being proven wrong, but by having carefully crafted entries blanket-reverted. Also, It makes me realize I may have done that to Skookum1, though not intentionally, but I'm sure no-one here wants to wage edit-battle. The flip-flopping revisions and opinions seem to hinge on what official sources are available for us to cite. Upon re-reading the IHO's document, I cede that there is not much of a reference inside. But at the same time, I had included in that complex edit quite a bit of factual info that got wiped out along with what may end up being opinion. Cedar Lake, for instance, instead of being some pond near Billings, is an important part of the southern Manitoba lake system. More-so in this case than Lake Manitoba and Lake Winnipegosis, which are bypassed by Saskatchewan River, and drain into Lake Winnipeg separately. I had the best intentions of trying to be factual and complete, as much as one flawed human and shifting resources allow. I'm not going to blindly revert to my own, but would ask that a second look be given to the drainage system info I had included, and reconsider the wide reversal. I took some time on that, please treat it better than a fly-by wipe. --  AlpinWolf   00:57, 20 February 2009 (UTC)
You know what Alpinwolf? That's life on wiki and a lesson to make changes topic-by-topic and section-by-section, with a good edit summary each time. Then everyone knows what you're doing each step of the way, and they know why you're doing it. And if it has a hint of being controversial, put a note on the talk page too.
And you know what else? Jump back up and climb onto the horse again! Make the changes you think are right, just make them in cogent groups, i.e. fix spelling in one edit, add a paragraph in another, change links in the next one - that way if someone else decides to revert you for some reason, all your work won't go down the drain. Keep trying buddy, we need help! :) Franamax (talk) 12:57, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

Have any of you Canadians (or Americans) been to Churchill, Manitoba? especially this time of year? As kids bundle up to trick-or-treat on Halloween, migrating polar bears are of high concern. Ask (and I have) anybody who lives ON Hudson Bay and they will tell you that that body of water-- which is fed by the Interpolar Current of its parent ocean, the Arctic, and fills up with ice--is part of the Arctic Ocean. They don't consider themselves to live on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean! I'm taking a stab in the dark and assuming that the Canadians who are debating whether or not Hudson Bay is part of the larger Arctic Ocean are actually from Vancouver or Calgary--or someplace in between--and not residents who actually live on Hudson Bay. People on the bay do NOT consider the water lapping their yards to be the Atlantic Ocean, anymore than the majority of oceanographers, geographers, geologists, or biologists worldwide do. Hudson Bay is part of the Arctic Ocean, making Triple Divide Peak (TDP) in Glacier-Waterton International Peace park the only triple point in North America. It is also the only triple point in the world because 1) Australia, South America, Europe, and Africa border only two oceans, and 2) while Asia touches three oceans, the vast endorheic basin(s) in the interior of Eurasia prevent a true triple point from existing. Glacier-Waterton International Peace Park is the only place on earth whose waters feed three oceans, period. None of this is bias; the average American does not consider everything north of the US-Canadian border to the arctic, despite the "Great White North" jokes on 'Strange Brew.' Finally, who cares how tall the peak is? Triple Divide Peak is 8,000 feet high. There are peaks two thousand+ feet higher in Glacier Park (near the elevation of Snow Dome), and the highest peak in Montana is almost 5,000 feet higher than TDP (and so higher than Snow Dome). An 8,000 foot peak is still a mountain, and this mountain happens to be a triple oceanic point on the earth. Snow Dome is also an important and notable triple point, but it involves two oceans, like the triple point in Minnesota where the Great Lakes, Hudson, and Mississippi divide lines meet. (talk) 04:04, 18 October 2010 (UTC)

How the Interpolar Current penetrates the Arctic Archipelago and its relative shallow straits seems mysterious to me; and current charts show Hudson Bay waters exiting via Frobisher Strait to Davis Strait, which is clearly not part of the Arctic Ocean. The triple divide point still stands as such, but the drainage is to Hudson Bay, and leaving the wording at that is simple enough; but if Hudson Bay is considered to help define a triple divide point, then the point at which the Yukon, Stikine and Mackenzie basins converge should also be considered; the Bering Sea as I recall may be officially part of the Pacific (or the Arctic) but it's very much a standalone body of water, not quite part of either potential "parent" - and also fills up with ice, even though it's part of the Pacific (just as the Norwegian Sea gets iced over, but is part of the Atlantic; so ice cover does not define the Arctic Ocean be default....Skookum1 (talk) 05:11, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
I think it's fairly obvious that, although some of the water in Hudson Bay drains into the Arctic Ocean, most of it drains into the Atlantic Ocean. The fact that it freezes over in winter is somewhat irrelevant because most of the water in northern Canada freezes over in winter. And Snow Dome is obviously much higher and gets much more precipitation than Triple Divide Peak, which is part of its credentials as the hydrological apex of North America. Triple Divide Peak's claim to be the only three-ocean triple point in the world is dubious because, Snow Dome aside, numerous sources make reference to another triple point in Siberia, although none that I have seen clearly identify it and it may not actually have a name. In reality, you get triple points anywhere three watersheds come together, although whether they are triple points between oceans depends on what your definitions of the oceans are. Those definitions seem to vary a lot depending on the authority quoted. It's really just a matter of perspective, and the perspective from the northern half of the continent differs significantly from the southern half. RockyMtnGuy (talk) 06:42, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
If nothing else, it would be nice if the map at the top of this page could show the Hudson Bay-Arctic divide along with all the others. It shows the Appalachian divide and surely the Hudson-Arctic divide is as significant as the Gulf of Mexico-Atlantic divide. Pfly (talk) 09:33, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
Doh, I see now that Skookum made this point a good year ago already. If I find the time I'll see if I can improve the map myself. Pfly (talk) 09:37, 18 October 2010 (UTC)

South American Map[edit]

If this is going to be claimed as "Continental Divide of the Americas " where is the map of South America. It seems the whole article is North Americancentric, there is really nothing about SA and CA in there minus a blurb about Panama and the Andes. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Seattlehawk94 (talkcontribs) 14:19, 15 March 2009 (UTC)

I second that. We should either rename the article to limit the topic to North America, or expand it greatly. -- Avenue (talk) 12:20, 14 January 2010 (UTC)
:II I third that.  We should either rename the article to limit the topic to North America or expand it greatly.  — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:15, 12 April 2012 (UTC) 
The South American portion of this article needs further development. The Continental Divide is less commonly known in South America and is more controversial since it generally does not follow political boundaries. It is every bit as important as the portion in North America. Yours aye,  Buaidh  19:02, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

"only place on earth..."[edit]

Re this:

. This is the only place on earth where two oceanic divides meet, i.e. where waters from a single point area feed into three different oceans. This status of Triple Divide Peak is the main reason behind the designation of Glacier-Waterton International Peace Park as the "Crown of the Continent" of North America[[5]]

Well, duh, except the very next paragraph sez there's another triple divide point just north at the Columbia Icefield. Is that on a different planet? Or could it be that the University of Montana citation is US-myopic and hasn't really given their claim much thought? Invalid cites are still invalid/incorrect; all that can be said is that the University of Montana site says that, but in reality there's the Columbia Icefield triple-point also. And it won't help quibbling that the Arctic Ocean and Hudson Bay are teh same thing, that's no more true than saying the Atlantic Ocean and Hudson Bay are the same thing. And, um, now that I think about it, it's a toss-up whether the Bering Strait (the outlet of the Yukon River) is part of the Pacific or the Arctic Oceans...somewhere up there, there's going to be a triple point between the Yukon (Bering Strait), Taku (Pacific Ocean) or Stikine (Pacific Ocean) and the Liard or Finlay (Arctic Ocean), which is just as much a triple point as the Columbia Icefield is....and I don't know African geography well, but it seems that the Nile and Congo must share, at some point, a drainage divide with something flowing to the Indian ccean. And given that Eurasia is bounded by not three, but four oceans, somewhere up in Tibet or the Altai there would seem to have to be a triple (or even quadruple) drainage point, by simple topographic geometry; even if there's no water flowing near that point it's still a drainage divide.....then there's the reality of Europe, where the Rhine and the Danube rise near each other and their drainage basins must flank something flowing to the Med (gee, that would be the Rhone, most likely....); OK, the North, Baltic and Mediterranean are only seas but it's only a question of terminology (especially given the assumption that Hudson Bay is an "ocean", or even part of one). Claims like "the only place on earth' are generally pretty shallow and always based on the person making them making up their own application of the definitions, i.e. they're very subjective, and always suspect.Skookum1 (talk) 02:13, 25 October 2009 (UTC)

I just finished reading the article and noticed the "only place on earth" claim also, yet the very next paragraph conflicts with that assertion. I see your (Snookum1) comment was made over 2 years that claim going to be corrected/removed anytime? I can do it myself if I didn't believe someone would go after me and put it back claiming I'm vandalizing an article. (talk) 03:52, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

Well, I went ahead and edited the "only place on earth" statement. (talk) 03:59, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

third triple point[edit]

As in the previous section, I believe there is a case to be made for the importance of the Yukon basin v. other Pacific drainages v. other Arctic drainages. I've located the point, it's Ash Mountain in Tuya Mountains Provincial Park. Streams off its south slopes flow to the Tuya (Stikine basin); off its southeast slopes to the Cottonwood River (Dease/Liard -> Mackenzie/Arctic drainage) and the Jennings River (Teslin-Yukon-Bering drainage) off its north.Skookum1 (talk) 03:50, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

Er, well, actually a southern subpeak of Ash, not the main summit, which is off the continental divide and only on the Stikine/Yukon divide, by some few hundred yards maybe; see Talk:Toozaza Peak.Skookum1 (talk) 03:56, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

main map[edit]

Has the Gulf of Meixico/Hudson Bay and Appalachian divide and the Gulf of Mexico-St. Lawrence divide - this is very much USPOV/context, and it should include the Mackenzie/Saskatchewan/Great Barrens divide and the Yukon/Stikine-Taku-Skagway-Alsek/Pacific divide. Pretty much the Yukon-Mackenzie/North Slope divide needs to be shown as well i.e. the outline of its basin (same idea as the Mississippi). Too much to ask for the Sea of Cortes/main Pacific divide, I guess - too hard to plot maybe?Skookum1 (talk) 03:50, 28 October 2009 (UTC)

Just re-iterating that the Mackenzie-Saskatchewan Divide, from the so-called "triple point" at Snow Dome, be shown as being just as singificant as the Hudson Bay/St Lawrence or St Lawwrence/Mississippi divide and the Applachian divide....Skookum1 (talk) 14:24, 24 November 2009 (UTC)

another exception[edit]

Somewhere in the Rockies, a creek forks and flows toward both the Missouri and (if i remember right) the Columbia. I've seen it on a topo map but have forgotten most details. —Tamfang (talk) 07:44, 24 June 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps you're thinking of North and South Two Ocean Creek, which join near Two Ocean Pass, on Two Ocean Plateau, splitting into Atlantic Creek and Pacific Creek, in Yellowstone National Park. See, U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Two Ocean Pass. Topo maps via ACME Mapper:,-110.1674116&z=15 Pfly (talk) 09:44, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
There's also La Poudre Pass Lake (really more of a meadow) in central Colorado -- one side empties into the Colorado River and the other flows into La Poudre Pass Creek which is a fork of the Cache La Poudre River which in turn goes into the South Platte River. Shannontalk contribs 23:13, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Map needs Beaufort Sea/Hudson Bay Divide[edit]

If the Atlantic subdivisions of the St. Lawrence basin, the Atlantic Seaboard and the Gulf of Mexico are shown, then certainly the much more significant divide between the Beaufort Sea and Hudson Bay drainages should be shown; I know there's that "but they're both the Arctic Ocean" definition issue, but basins whose outlets are a couple of thousand miles apart and which divide a significant sector of the continent....well, suffice to say it seems that the maker of this map saw US basin-divisions as more significant, even though thyey're not; if the Atlantic Seaboard/Appalachian Divide is shown, also, the Churchill/Ungava/Labrador main divide should also be shown (especially since one flows to the "Arctic Ocean" aka Hudson Bay while the other flows directly to the North Atlantic.....Skookum1 (talk) 22:05, 22 November 2010 (UTC)

Heya, I was just loading some maps into Photoshop to add that divide to the map used here--at the same time you were posting. Unsure of a name for it, I was thinking of labeling it the "Hudson Bay–Arctic Ocean Divide". Might actually manage to do it sometime today. Pfly (talk) 22:23, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
Well, you'd have people making issue of that Hudson Bay vs. Arctic Ocean, since there's definitions out there which include Hudson Bay as part of the Arctic Ocean. I'd suggested Beaufort Sea because the main drainage is that of the Mackenzie....though there's a divide line which snakes across the Great Barrens to the Boothia Peninsula and what's north of it isn't exactly the BEaufort Sea, more like the Northwest Passage (a series of straits flanking the mainland). Maybe Beaufort Sea/Northwest Passage-Hudson Bay Divide would suffice.Skookum1 (talk) 22:35, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
Actually, hmm, a simple "Hudson Bay Divide" should suffice, now that I think about it. The map already shows a "St. Lawrence" divide after all. Plus lots of divides are named for the thing they contain, like Tennessee Valley Divide, Great Basin Divide, etc. Pfly (talk) 22:38, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
PS, the map is not large, so the detail will be low. I was thinking of using the maps at List of Hudson Bay rivers and Rupert's Land as a basic guide. Pfly (talk) 22:42, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
I "did" the divide line for bivouac a long time ago, I don't think I saved the list of points. The Rupert's Land map is maybe the best guide....that List of Hudson Bay rivers doesn't strike me as the right title for that - List of rivers flowing into Hudson Bay or List of rivers in the Hudson Bay drainage seem more accurate/grammatical titles.Skookum1 (talk) 22:45, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
Hmm, WP has List of rivers of the Baltic Sea and List of rivers discharging into the North Sea. ...none of these inspire me to move the page... Pfly (talk) 22:56, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
Well, "Hudson Bay rivers" doesn't cut it...maybe we should take it up at WP:Rivers and come up with a standard-title format.Skookum1 (talk) 23:11, 22 November 2010 (UTC)

New map of divides[edit]

I finished a new map, at the Commons: North American - Water Divides. I'll use it on this page for now. Feedback welcomed (perhaps better at User talk:Pfly instead of here). Some of the terminology might not be ideal. I ended up using the term "Arctic" for the Hudson Bay–Beaufort Sea divide, a term I saw here and there. Realized "Hudson Bay Divide" would not work because that would include the so-called Laurentian/Northern divide as well as the new one I added. I'm not devoted to the term "Arctic Divide", but not sure about "Hudson Bay–Beaufort Sea Divide"--anyway the new line goes clear to the southern end of Baffin Island, far from the Beaufort Sea). Also, I'm thinking of adding some additional text, like identifying the various closed basins along the divides (Great Divide Basin, Bolsón de Mapimí, etc). Also thinking about uploading an SVG version with PNGs at various sizes, but have to learn a bit more about how to do that. Anyway, it may not be the best map in the world, but it should be an improvement over the old one. Pfly (talk) 21:15, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

I think maybe the Yukon basin divides could be shown....I'm always dicey on considering the Bering Strait/Sea to be part of the Pacific Ocean (which technically it is); but then that kind of predisposes towards showing hte larger Pacific basins like that of the Stikine, Fraser, Columbia and Sacramento...and's a slippery slope; similarly the Rio Grande/Mississippi divide might be added (or maybe ther'es another basin in between somewhere in Texas?) but in the same light the Churchill River/Gulf of St. Lawrence one could diverge off the Hudson Bay divide where it meets the Labrador boundary.....but none of these are continental divides, except maybe the Yukon; with the Mississippi and St. Lawrence it's because their basins are so large and unique I think they could/should be shown separately/additionally.Skookum1 (talk) 23:22, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
I'm copying this thread to my talk page because it's relevant to more than just this page. So see User talk:Pfly#New map of divides. Pfly (talk) 08:48, 24 November 2010 (UTC)
What about the Great Red Desert in Wyoming: Doesn't the Divide "split" around it, as it flows neither east nor west?Skookum1 (talk) 06:40, 27 November 2010 (UTC)
Yep, that's in the Great Divide Basin. Pfly (talk) 07:18, 27 November 2010 (UTC)

Delete Vandalism[edit]

I have deleted what looks to me to be vandalism by in their second revision on 10 May. I might be wrong, but Quinoa is not a tribe but a cereal and Monogui Driskol turns up precisely one hit on Google; this article. Cottonshirtτ 19:17, 15 May 2011 (UTC)


I think it is impossible for there NOT to be a connecting divide between the Great Basin and the Great Divide. That seems to have escaped the map makers and geographers. At some point, the water either flows south of the basin or north....i.e. another line is needed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:19, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Responding to old comment. This line would be, if I'm not mistaken, the Green River/Colorado basin and the Snake River/Columbia basin, It didn't escape me, it just didn't make the my cut for all the possible divides that could be shown. It's a slippery slope anyway. That line could essentially divide waters flowing "directly" to the Pacific with those flowing to the Gulf of California. But if you are going to do that wouldn't you also want another divide line in Mexico, separating the drainage to the Gulf of California from more southernly drainages "directly" into the Pacific in Mexico? ...and if you show that, why not...etc etc etc. A more complex map could be made, I just didn't have it in me. Pfly (talk) 05:13, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: moved DrKiernan (talk) 21:25, 24 March 2013 (UTC)

Continental Divide of the Northern AmericasContinental Divide of the Americas – This article was inappropriately moved from "Continental Divide of the Americas" to "Continental Divide of the Northern Americas". The proper name of this New World hydrological divide is the "Continental Divide of the Americas". The term "Continental Divide of the Northern Americas" has never been used.  Buaidh  18:55, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

This article is intended to cover both North and South America. The South American portion of this article requires further development. Yours aye,  Buaidh  18:55, 16 March 2013 (UTC)

Agreed. Article should be moved back to Continental Divide of the Americas. Anyway, there is no such thing as the "Northern Americas". --Macrakis (talk) 21:09, 16 March 2013 (UTC)
Ditto.Skookum1 (talk) 04:26, 17 March 2013 (UTC)
  • Agree. I did the contested move, and it was not a good idea. -DePiep (talk) 11:19, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
  • Split create a new overview article at the suggested title, summarizing this article, and moving the non-North America material there. Rename this article to Continental divide of North America proper (North America north of the Yucatan, so excluding Central America and the Caribbean). This article is almost entirely about North America, and returning it to the other title does not correct the imbalance caused by this skew. The article is large enough to stand on its own, so should serve as a subarticle. Returning it to the Americas would just return to the extreme imbalance previously there. All the WikiProject Banners should be migrated to the new overview article, with only North America proper banners also staying here. -- (talk) 14:02, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

The term "the Americas" comprises North America, the Carribean, Central America, and South America. The Continental Divide of the Americas extends from the Bering Strait to the Strait of Magellan. You may wish to create articles about specific portions of this hydrological divide, but please keep this article intact to discuss the entire length of this major world hydrographic feature. Yours aye,  Buaidh  14:33, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

As Buaidh says. Before I moved it, I was mislead by the top image that only shows the Northern part. Explanations here are clear on correct name and content. -DePiep (talk) 14:51, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.


Shouldn't File:NorthAmerica-WaterDivides.png have a separate zone for the Gulf of California and Bering Strait? (Since the Gulf of Mexico and Hudson Bay are separate from the Atlantic and Arctic respectively) -- (talk) 13:57, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

North America has hundreds of hydrological divides. Only a select few of these are shown to simplify the map. If you are interested, see Discover Canada's Watersheds and United States EPA: Surf Your Watershed. Yours aye,  Buaidh  22:00, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
I mean the map on this page, not a discussion of every watershed in North America. Why for example, have a separate entry for the Great Basin? Why not have as part of the Pacific zone? Why separate the St. Lawrence from the Atlantic? Why separate the Hudson Bay from the Arctic? If you do separate the Great Basin out, I see no reason why you shouldn't separate out the Bering and the Gulf of California as well, since the Great Basin is part of the Gulf of California watershed. And Labrador isn't part of the St.Lawrence watershed, ("Labrador" was defined as being a watershed separate from the St.Lawrence or the Hudson Bay ones. So the map is incorrect already.) -- (talk) 21:38, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
This article is only about the Continental Divide of the Americas. The other hydrological divisions of North America are only shown for reference. Why don't you create a new map showing the entire length of the Continental Divide of the Americas? We can use all the help we can get. All the work on Wikipedia is performed by volunteers.  Buaidh  22:12, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
Would be great. WP:GL/M. -DePiep (talk) 22:14, 18 March 2013 (UTC)
I made that map some time ago as a replacement for the one previously used here, [6], which is rather ugly and US-centric. You can see some of the discussions about it on this talk page up above. I tried to make a nicer looking version, leaving out some strange and unimportant details, like Devils Lake (which was included I assume because it is usually endorheic, but there are many other endorheic lakes and basins far larger than that one). I tried to show the divides more accurately (the old map's Great Basin boundary was rather off in places, and for some reason it showed the Great Divide Basin along the main continental divide, but not the larger Guzmán Basin and Bolsón de Mapimí. I added the "Arctic" divide for reasons gone over at length earlier on this talk page—sources differ over whether Hudson Bay is part of the Atlantic or Arctic Ocean, or "not really either", and some argue that Snow Dome is as or more of a "triple divide" than Triple Divide Peak. Personally I don't feel too strongly one way or the other, mainly just noting that sources differ on this point. There is no truly correct answer as to whether Hudson Bay is really part of the Atlantic or Arctic, however from a hydrological point of view it seems clear to me it is much more strongly linked to the Atlantic. And just to complicate things there are no shortage of oceanographers who consider the Arctic Ocean as a whole to be a "marginal sea" of the Atlantic. There's simply no easy answer, so I figure we should show both. I also fixed some outright mistakes, such as the labeling of the "St. Lawrence" divide as the "St. Lawrence Seaway" (!).
I agree that there are many divides that could be shown. Rather than make a map of my own personsal list of "important divides" (whatever that would be, I'm not sure), I just copied the older map, which after all comes from the National Atlas of the United States, with minor tweaks and the addition of the Snow Dome divide. There are many good sources that rank the Snow Dome divide as the second most important of North America—certainly more significant than the "Eastern" divide, and the text on this page had already made mention of the Snow Dome "Arctic" divide. Furthermore, of all the divides shown only these two intersect the main continental divide, which is what this page is about. So I thought this was an acceptable, even desirable addition. But I agree that since it shows the Great Basin and the Eastern divide and such, it could, maybe should show the Bering, Gulf of California, etc, divides. I thought about making a more detailed map something like this one of Europe's main divides/drainage basins, [7], but in the end found I only had the time and desire to make a more simple replacement map. I wouldn't mind a better map replacing mine, although I note that the European example linked above is more about drainage basins and less about divides. Something like that might be overkill for a page like this (but perhaps useful on other pages).
Also, on Labrador not being part of the St.Lawrence watershed—the map doesn't show watersheds (that is, drainage basins), it shows divides between oceans and (some) major seas. Sources that say Hudson Bay is part of the Arctic Ocean draw the divide between the Atlantic and Arctic the way shown here (as did the old map I replaced). It isn't saying south of that line water flows to the St. Lawrence—it's saying it flows to the Atlantic rather than the Arctic (according to some sources). Right? (though personally I find it a little odd that some sources claim the Atlantic Ocean includes the Labrador Sea but not Davis Strait, which is supposedly part of the Arctic Ocean. Maybe it has to do with ice, but certainly in terms of large currents the Labrador Sea, Davis Strait, and Baffin Bay are more linked to the Atlantic! But whatever, some sources make this claim anyway. Pfly (talk) 04:56, 19 March 2013 (UTC)
Finally, I would be much in favor of a map showing South America as well! I thought about trying to make one, but never got around to it. Maybe someday, unless someone else beats to me it. Pfly (talk) 04:38, 19 March 2013 (UTC)
The St.Lawrence is separated from the Atlantic seaboard drainage basin, if it really is the Atlantic drainage basin, then it shouldn't be separated. The Labrador coastal watershed is not part of the St.Lawrence drainage zone, and is how Labrador is defined, so is why I think the map is currently wrong. It should be the same zone as the Eastern seaboard, and not as part of the GreatLakes-StLawrences-Gulf zone. If the line is to separate the Arctic/Hudson from the Atlantic zone, there should be no separation between the St.Lawrence and the Eastern seaboard zones, but there's a line that does do that. At any rate, I think it's missing a line to separate Labrador from the St.Lawrence, or the segment of line after the St.Lawrence and Eastern seaboard lines meet should be removed, since it either divides the basin in two, or defines two different Atlantic drainage zones. If it does define two different zones, the Labrador is separate from the St.Lawrence zone, so should also be indicated. -- (talk) 09:04, 20 March 2013 (UTC)
I don't disagree. It's unsatisfactory, at the least, the way the Eastern and St. Lawrence lines are portrayed. However, I was simply copying the pre-existing map. That map, by the way, came from this page, [8], which has lots of text describing the divides mapped. I've never found that page particularly inspiring as a reliable source, despite being part of the US National Atlas (it purports to be about North America but is really very US-centric in focus). I think I said elsewhere I'd like to see a whole new map, but I only had the energy to redo the old map. Given a set of good reliable sources—sources about divides rather than just basins/watersheds—I might be inspired to make a new map. But I remember finding it difficult to locate reliable sources about the "lesser divides" at all. Thus this less than ideal map. Pfly (talk) 00:45, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
PS, I suppose I should link Hudson Bay, which gets more into the question of which ocean it is part of, with sources (also see the talk page). I thought that page was a minor battleground over which ocean the bay was part of, but currently it seems to rather firmly say it is part of the Atlantic. There's also Hudson Bay drainage basin. Pfly (talk) 04:42, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

"Continental" divides[edit]

Technically speaking, a "continental" hydrological division should span the entire breath of a "continent". The Continental Divide of the Americas spans the entire length of either one or two continents, depending on whether you consider the Americas to be one or two continents. Many lesser hydrological divisions are commonly called "continental divides", although the term does not properly apply. The Eastern Continental Divide extends from Cape Breton to the Florida Keys, not quite the breath of a continent, but significant nonetheless. Yours aye,  Buaidh  15:11, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

Very debatable if that sholud be named that rather than "Appalachian Divide"'s not a continental divide in the accepted sense of that term.Skookum1 (talk) 09:29, 25 March 2013 (UTC)

Map of divide in South America[edit]

Finally made a map showing the divide in South America (and Central America, which isn't shown on the other map): . It's rather minimal. I think I got the divide right, but let me know if there are any issues with the map. The divide in southern Chile/Argentina might be slightly different, but I think I got it right. Also, there are additional closed drainage areas south of the Altiplano region shown, but as far as I could tell they mostly lie east of the divide, in Argentina, rather than on it, and are mostly rather small anyway. Pfly (talk) 07:21, 2 April 2013 (UTC)

Thank you. A great contribution to wp. And I love it, fwiw. -DePiep (talk) 23:00, 2 April 2013 (UTC)

A good start, but there are some issues that I would bring up regarding the areas that I am most familiar with. First I think your need to review the drainage basins between latitudes 45 and 49 South. In particular you need to look at the drainage basins associated with Lake General Carrera, Lake O'Higgins and Cochrane Lake. All of these lakes and feeder streams drain to the Pacific and not Atlantic (as shown). An easy check of this is that in these latitudes there are no Atlantic drainages within the Chile, while there are several (portions) of Pacific Drainages in Argentina. The second, and tricker issue, is what to do with the Strait of Magellan. You seem to have cut along a fairly arbitrary line that parallels the high peak of the Andes. I think it is generally accepted that the entire Strait is considered part of the Pacific Ocean -- and it meets the Atlantic ocean on its eastern mouth. Therefore you may want to show drainage basins that feed in to the straight, both on the North, maindlan-side, as well as in Tierra del Fuego, as being of the Pacific-side of the divide. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:46, 15 April 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for the input. I'll see if I can improve the map. Do you know of any good sources I could use to address the points you make? Pfly (talk) 03:56, 31 May 2013 (UTC)

Panama Canal[edit]

I added the Panama Canal to the See also section, but it was removed [9]. This is the interesting relevance: the Canal is fed (lock operations are fed) throught the high level lake. The lake itself is filled by Gatun and Chagres rivers, which originally flowed into the Pacific Atlantic. Now through the Culebra Cut, the digout in the ridge that breaks through the watershed ridge, the water flow into the Atlantic Pacific too. That is a sort of interruption in the watershed I'd say. -DePiep (talk) 08:33, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

Agreed that the Panama Canal changed the drainage patterns in its local area. But I don't think it's useful to readers to include it in the "See Also" section. --Macrakis (talk) 14:21, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
Any suggestion? -DePiep (talk) 23:23, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

Removed "Human and cultural impact" subsection[edit]

I'm taking out the "Human and cultural impact" section and posting it here in order to explain. First, as Mexico is part of North America the claim that Lewis and Clark, or Simon Fraser, were the first to cross the divide is very wrong. Second, the whole idea of "Aboriginal impact with The Divide" is not explained. What is it even supposed to mean? Third, the term "aboriginal in-migration" is confusing and unsourced. Fourth, the idea that the divide is a symbol of the difference between eastern and western America is unsourced and hard to believe—New Mexico and Wyoming are part of "the east"? And that assuming "America" means the United States—if it doesn't then the claim is even less believable. Finally, the divide might play a role in the book The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet, but this seems rather trivial for a geographic feature spanning two continents. Also the source cited merely mentions "the drainage patterns along the Continental Divide", not that the divide serves as a "central symbol". Anyway, removed text below. Pfly (talk) 23:18, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Aboriginal impact with The Divide in North America was largely undocumented until the early 19th Century, when the [[Corps of Discovery]] first crossed then recrossed it in search of a waterway connecting the Columbia and Missouri drainages. A slightly earlier voyage by [[Simon Fraser (explorer)|Simon Fraser]] crossed the Divide further north. Much of the exploration was in search of a fabled [[Northwest Passage]].<ref>Allen, John Logan, ''Journey through the Garden'', 1974, ISBN 0-252-00397-7</ref> Aboriginal [[Settlement of the Americas|in-migration]] is thought{{by who|date=August 2013}} to have been profoundly affected by the Divide{{fact|date=August 2013}}. The divide is often used{{by who|date=August 2013}} as a symbol of the difference between eastern and western America. It serves as one of the central symbols for [[Reif Larsen]]'s novel ''[[The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet]]''.<ref>[ Fran Arrieta-Walden, "Review: The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet" ''Oregon Books'']</ref>

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