The James River Basin is a sub-basin of the White River Basin which is part of the Arkansas-White-Red drainage system. The basin is located in southwest Missouri in portions of Webster, Greene, Christian, Stone, and Barry counties. The James River flows approximately 99 miles from its headwaters in Webster County into Table Rock Lake where its lower reaches have been impounded. The major tributaries to the James River include Pearson Creek, Wilson Creek, Finley Creek, Crane Creek, and Flat Creek.
The James River watershed totals 1,512 square miles. Streams of order 5 or greater are James River, Flat Creek, Wilson Creek, Finley Creek, Crane Creek, and Rockhouse Creek. The total mileage of streams with permanent flow is 289 miles. Intermittent streams with permanent pools add another 74 miles. Several losing stream reaches and numerous springs are also located in the basin.