When you think about it, rivers are something magical. They carry water and bring life to the land, they cut through nature and create their own paths. They provide us with great places to fish and have fun, and they also can cause us heartache during heavy floods.
North Dakota has many rivers, not all of which are listed here, but here are a few great ones:
1. Little Missouri River
The Little Missouri River is a 560-mile-long tributary of the Missouri River. It flows all the way from Wyoming and through the Badlands, eventually ending into Lake Sakakawea.
2. Cannonball River
The Cannonball River is another tributary of the Missouri River. It was named for its cannonball concretions, which are formations created from early cementation of sand and silt by calcite, which are, of course, shaped like cannonballs. Neat!
3. Sheyenne River
The Sheyenne River is a 590-mile-long tributary of the Red River. The bridge pictured over it is the Hi-Line Railroad bridge. It is one of the longest and highest single track railroad viaducts in the United States.
4. Little Muddy River
This frozen winter view of the Little Muddy River is just breathtaking! The river is a tributary of the Missouri River and joins it near Williston, ND.
5. Wild Rice River
The Wild Rice River is a tributary of the Red River and flows in a windy path next to it for a lot of its length. It has an average flow of 104 cubic feet per second, but has been recorded at as high as 9,504 cubic feet per second!
6. Des Lacs River
Des Lacs River flows through both Saskatchewan, Canada and western North Dakota. Ethnographic accounts indicate that the river region has been used by Sioux, Mandan, Hidatsa, Ojibwa, and Atsina peoples, and later settlers used it for cattle and even a coal mine at the river's mouth. Pretty!
7. James River
The James River is yet another tributary of the Missouri River. It drops about 5 inches each mile which causes a low enough level that reverse flows happen sometimes. Wow!!
8. Pembina River
The Pembina River is a tributary of the Red River. It drains an area of about 8500 square kilometers along the North Dakota and Canadian border.
9. Souris River
The Souris River is also known as the Mouse River. You may remember in the summer of 2011, a historical flood of the river resulted in the evacuation of 11,000 residents in Minot, ND along with a lot of significant damage to property.
10. Maple River
The Maple River is a tributary of the Sheyenne River and is about 198 miles long. It flows through Steele, Barnes, Cass, and Ransom counties, with a general southward flow.
Do you have a favorite river in North Dakota? Whether it was listed here or not, tell us about it in the comments!