West Virginia Watersheds

What is a watershed? After you learn what a watershed is, It is important that you understand how to determine watershed boundaries and become familar with our state's topographic maps. 
West Virginia has 32 watersheds divided according to the USGS hydrologic unit codes (HUC) that contribute to the Chesapeake Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.  The waters west of the eastern continental divide flow into the Ohio River. The Ohio joins the Mississippi River at Cairo, IL. The Mississippi flows into the Gulf of Mexico at New Orleans, LA. The eastern continental divide changes the course of five of our eastern rivers towards the Potomac River. The Potomac enters the Chesapeake Bay southeast of Washington DC.  A few streams in the southeastern corner of the state flow towards the James River.  Use the tools below to learn more about your local, state and US watersheds.
 Mapping Tools
  • National Map Viewer is a USGS geospatial map that provides data visualizations, downloadable files and the ability create personalized maps
  • Waters GeoViewer displays a snapshot of EPA Office of Waters Program data using a map interface  
  • WV Map is the public gateway to online mapping resources in the mountain state.  It provides access to a wide vareity of geographic data from the Internet
  • WVDEP's TAGIS/GIS mapping tools
  • WV GIS Technical Center: Watershed boundary data set
  • Watershed Map: You can click anywhere on the map (not including Alaska) and it will calculate the watershed for that point. Large watershed (i.e. Colorado River) are problematic, but small to medium watersheds should show up within a few of seconds. The website is a work in progress. Go to the about page or Email the developer to learn more. Note: works best with Google Chrome.   
Additional Resouces 
Youghigheny Monongahela West Fork Cheat Tygart Valley Dunkard Creek WV direct drains of the Potomac Potomac River Shenandoah Shenandoah River North Branch of the Potomac Cacapon Potts Creek of the James River Gauley Greenbrier Lower New Upper New Upper Kanawha Lower Kanawha Coal Upper Guyandotte Lower Guyandotte Twelvepole Creek Tug Fork Big Sandy Little Kanawha Middle Ohio Elk Lower Ohio Upper Ohio Middle Ohio Upper Ohio South Branch of the Potomac River Watershed Groupings Watershed Assessment Branch WV County map