The Current River Watershed drains a land area of approximately 2,621 square miles in portions of 9 counties in Missouri and 2 Counties in Arkansas (Figure Lo01). These counties include Texas, Dent, Reynolds, Shannon, Howell, Oregon, Carter, Butler, and Ripley in Missouri; and Randolph and Clay Counties in Arkansas. Most of the watershed (95.9%) lies within Missouri. The Current River Watershed is bounded to the West by the Big Piney, Eleven Point, and Fourche Creek Watersheds; and to the North by the Meremac Watershed. The Black River Watershed occupies the entire eastern boundary of the Current River Watershed.
Approximately 18% of the Current River Watershed is drained by the Jacks Fork River which flows into the Current River approximately 5 air miles east, northeast of Eminence, Missouri. The Jacks Fork Watershed has been addressed in a separate watershed inventory and assessment document and thus will not be addressed within unless otherwise noted. In addition, the portion of the watershed occurring in Arkansas will not be addressed in this document unless otherwise noted.
The Current River is formed by the confluence of Pigeon Creek and the Montauk Spring complex near Montauk, Missouri. From its beginnings the river flows in a southeasterly direction for approximately 56 miles before receiving the waters of the Jacks Fork River. It then continues in a southeasterly direction for 34 miles before reaching the city of Van Buren, Missouri. Approximately 12 miles southeast of Van Buren, the river turns to the south and follows this general direction for approximately 45 miles to the Missouri/Arkansas state line. The Current River continues for another 36 miles before flowing into the Black River near Pocahontas, Arkansas.
The Current River Watershed (including the Jacks Fork Watershed and Current River Watershed in Arkansas) has 16 cities and towns within or partially within its boundary (Figure Lo02). Three of these have populations exceeding 1,000 persons. These are the cities of Doniphan, Missouri (1,713); Mountain View, Missouri (2,036); and Winona, Missouri (1,081).
The Current River Watershed includes approximately 3,407 miles of road based on analysis of transportation route geographical information system (GIS)data of the U.S. Bureau of the Census (1997). This is 1.3 miles of road for every square mile of drainage area. Three U.S. Highways and 10 major state routes intersect the Current River Watershed.