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Ouachita River Forsyth Park to D
Ouachita River Forsyth Park to D'Arbonne Bayou Spillway Running in Bass Boat
Published: 2014/11/19
Channel: Rich Lindgren
Drone Flight - Ouachita River - DJI Phantom 3
Drone Flight - Ouachita River - DJI Phantom 3
Published: 2015/09/21
Channel: Offgrid Michael
Ouachita River Summer Bass Fishing (Monroe, La) - July 2016
Ouachita River Summer Bass Fishing (Monroe, La) - July 2016
Published: 2016/08/08
Channel: Saline Creek Outdoors
A Float on the Ouachita River 08 29 15
A Float on the Ouachita River 08 29 15
Published: 2015/09/08
Channel: Disneylud
Ouachita River D
Ouachita River D'arbonne Bayou Bass Fishing
Published: 2014/11/13
Channel: Rich Lindgren
Ouachita River at Rockport
Ouachita River at Rockport
Published: 2012/05/21
Channel: Daniel Phillips
Sondra Rankin on the Ouachita River in Lousiana
Sondra Rankin on the Ouachita River in Lousiana
Published: 2007/02/04
Channel: Harriet Rankin
Paddle Ouachita River Arkansas
Paddle Ouachita River Arkansas
Published: 2016/07/06
Channel: PaddleArkansas.org
Ouachita River after the flooding in Monroe / West Monroe
Ouachita River after the flooding in Monroe / West Monroe
Published: 2016/03/21
Channel: Josh Haber
Ouachita river 1200 FT   20 ACRE MTN VIEWS
Ouachita river 1200 FT 20 ACRE MTN VIEWS
Published: 2016/02/01
Channel: DAN SMITH
The Great Myths and History of the Lost OUACHITA(WASHITAW) Civilization of Moundbuilders
The Great Myths and History of the Lost OUACHITA(WASHITAW) Civilization of Moundbuilders
Published: 2017/01/11
Channel: Kadohadacho(Caddo) Paw-Paw(Natchitoches)- Washitaw(Ouachita) -Tunica-Tensas-Muur(Moors)
2014 BA.S.S. Nation Championship at Ouachita River
2014 BA.S.S. Nation Championship at Ouachita River
Published: 2014/12/07
Channel: Bret Reid
Zac Harrell and Larry Musgrove bass fishing ouachita river 2016
Zac Harrell and Larry Musgrove bass fishing ouachita river 2016
Published: 2016/06/23
Channel: Zachary Harrell
2017 ABA AFT Nationals at Ouachita River
2017 ABA AFT Nationals at Ouachita River
Published: 2017/10/23
Channel: JSBassin
35 ACRES OUACHITA RIVER
35 ACRES OUACHITA RIVER
Published: 2016/06/01
Channel: DAN SMITH
Ouachita River, Columbia, Louisiana, 4-7-2015
Ouachita River, Columbia, Louisiana, 4-7-2015
Published: 2015/04/07
Channel: Travis Bradley
FLW Collegiate Southern Conference Recap (Ouachita River) 2016
FLW Collegiate Southern Conference Recap (Ouachita River) 2016
Published: 2016/10/25
Channel: Bassin with Beckham
Wild boar swimming the ouachita river.
Wild boar swimming the ouachita river.
Published: 2016/09/23
Channel: oin13
Ouachita River
Ouachita River
Published: 2017/01/16
Channel: fwscott
2 RIVERS OUACHITA RIVER 1200 FT & LITTLE MISSOURI 500 FT
2 RIVERS OUACHITA RIVER 1200 FT & LITTLE MISSOURI 500 FT
Published: 2016/02/02
Channel: DAN SMITH
Ouachita River x Kayak
Ouachita River x Kayak
Published: 2012/03/23
Channel: J Springer
Floating the Ouachita
Floating the Ouachita
Published: 2015/08/09
Channel: flgraziani
Ouachita River Bridge Construction Summer 2016
Ouachita River Bridge Construction Summer 2016
Published: 2016/06/24
Channel: Wesley Kluck
Scott Suggs Breaks Down Lake Ouachita
Scott Suggs Breaks Down Lake Ouachita
Published: 2015/08/19
Channel: FLWFishing
Sondra Rankin - Ouachita River
Sondra Rankin - Ouachita River
Published: 2011/04/22
Channel: Sondra Rankin
CFO- Bass fishing on the Ouachita River #14
CFO- Bass fishing on the Ouachita River #14
Published: 2016/06/30
Channel: CountryFolks100
DeSoto Bluff, Ouachita River, Arkadelphia, Arkansas 2013 Revised Video
DeSoto Bluff, Ouachita River, Arkadelphia, Arkansas 2013 Revised Video
Published: 2013/06/24
Channel: Wesley Kluck
Honey Hole Shop -GoPro Bass Fishing Edit on the Ouachita River
Honey Hole Shop -GoPro Bass Fishing Edit on the Ouachita River
Published: 2015/08/03
Channel: TynerDrew
Ouachita River Rockport Loop
Ouachita River Rockport Loop
Published: 2012/08/19
Channel: number4cat1
Ouachita River Float Trip
Ouachita River Float Trip
Published: 2014/05/11
Channel: vewdew1
RanGary Flathead Op catfish Ouachita River trotline
RanGary Flathead Op catfish Ouachita River trotline
Published: 2012/03/15
Channel: 34bullfrog
Ouachita River, alternate Dragover take-out point
Ouachita River, alternate Dragover take-out point
Published: 2014/04/22
Channel: KarlaFish
Ouachita River Catfish
Ouachita River Catfish
Published: 2017/05/25
Channel: GaryB51
Fishing the Ouachita River Mid May 2017 2.8 lb Smallmouth
Fishing the Ouachita River Mid May 2017 2.8 lb Smallmouth
Published: 2017/06/21
Channel: Jake Angler
Ouachita River Bottoms
Ouachita River Bottoms
Published: 2017/10/14
Channel: Doug Kilgore
Bangs Slough off Ouachita River - Calion, AR
Bangs Slough off Ouachita River - Calion, AR
Published: 2008/05/27
Channel: ttenni
Ouachita River Alligator with Pink Eyes
Ouachita River Alligator with Pink Eyes
Published: 2015/09/25
Channel: Taylor Hubenthal
Louisiana Red Wolf?  Nov-12th-2017  Ouachita River, North Monroe, Louisiana
Louisiana Red Wolf? Nov-12th-2017 Ouachita River, North Monroe, Louisiana
Published: 2017/11/13
Channel: UpseyDownsey
Bassmaster College series Ouchita river 2014 Monroe LA
Bassmaster College series Ouchita river 2014 Monroe LA
Published: 2014/04/13
Channel: DakotaJonesFishing
Ouachita River Prison
Ouachita River Prison
Published: 2010/02/22
Channel: Cops Out Preaching Salvation
Video of I-20 and the Ouachita River
Video of I-20 and the Ouachita River
Published: 2016/01/31
Channel: Josh Haber
Starr boys flatheads on ouachita river
Starr boys flatheads on ouachita river
Published: 2017/06/05
Channel: Kenneth Starr
Ouachita River Cruise
Ouachita River Cruise
Published: 2014/11/27
Channel: Cypress Entertainment
Ouachita river 03/17/2016 water rising at river house Sterlington la
Ouachita river 03/17/2016 water rising at river house Sterlington la
Published: 2016/03/29
Channel: Wayne Farmer Jr
A Levee Runs Through It: Reconnecting the Ouachita River to Its Floodplain
A Levee Runs Through It: Reconnecting the Ouachita River to Its Floodplain
Published: 2009/05/19
Channel: TNCArkansas
Ouachita River at Sunset by drone
Ouachita River at Sunset by drone
Published: 2017/07/12
Channel: TheGregspeed
LASTA SP 745 over the Ouachita river bridge at Monroe, LA
LASTA SP 745 over the Ouachita river bridge at Monroe, LA
Published: 2008/02/13
Channel: railrunner01
B.A.S.S. College Central Regional: Day 2
B.A.S.S. College Central Regional: Day 2
Published: 2014/04/14
Channel: Austin Watkins
EVST 1201 Ouachita River Promo web FLW H 264 640x360
EVST 1201 Ouachita River Promo web FLW H 264 640x360
Published: 2013/01/04
Channel: FLWFishing
RanGary Steve catches Blue Catfish ouachita river louisiana stray dog story
RanGary Steve catches Blue Catfish ouachita river louisiana stray dog story
Published: 2012/03/22
Channel: 34bullfrog
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Ouachita River
River
Ouachita River, Arkansas.jpg
Ouachita River in Ouachita County, AR
Country United States
States Arkansas, Louisiana
Tributaries
 - left Little Missouri, Saline, Tensas
 - right Caddo, Little
Cities Hot Springs, AR, Camden, AR, Monroe, LA, West Monroe, LA
Source
 - location Ouachita Mountains, Polk County, Arkansas
 - coordinates 34°41′56″N 94°19′57″W / 34.69889°N 94.33250°W / 34.69889; -94.33250
Mouth Black River
 - location Catahoula Parish, near Jonesville, Louisiana
 - coordinates 31°37′53″N 91°48′25″W / 31.63139°N 91.80694°W / 31.63139; -91.80694Coordinates: 31°37′53″N 91°48′25″W / 31.63139°N 91.80694°W / 31.63139; -91.80694
Length 605 mi (974 km)
Ouachita watershed.png
Map of the Ouachita River watershed. The Ouachita joins the Tensas River near Jonesville, Louisiana to form the Black River (Louisiana).
Blakely Mountain Dam on the Ouachita River in Garland County, Arkansas. The dam impounds Lake Ouachita.
Columbia Lock and Dam on the Ouachita River

The Ouachita River (/ˈwɑːʃɪtɑː/ WAH-shi-tah) is a 605-mile-long (974 km)[1] river that runs south and east through the U.S. states of Arkansas and Louisiana, joining the Tensas River to form the Black River near Jonesville, Louisiana. It is the 25th longest river in the United States (by main stem).

Course[edit]

The Ouachita River begins in the Ouachita Mountains near Mena, Arkansas. It flows east into Lake Ouachita, a reservoir created by Blakely Mountain Dam. The North Fork and South Fork of the Ouachita flow into Lake Ouachita to join the main stream. Portions of the river in this region flow through the Ouachita National Forest. From the lake, the Ouachita flows south into Lake Hamilton, a reservoir created by Carpenter Dam, named after Flavius Josephus Carpenter. The city of Hot Springs lies on the north side of Lake Hamilton. Another reservoir, Lake Catherine, impounds the Ouachita just below Lake Hamilton. Below Lake Catherine, the river flows free through most of the rest of Arkansas.

Just below Lake Catherine, the river bends south near Malvern, and collects the Caddo River near Arkadelphia. Downstream, the Little Missouri River joins the Ouachita. After passing the city of Camden, shortly downstream from where dredging for navigational purposes begins, the river collects the waters of Smackover Creek and later the Ouachita's main tributary, the Saline River. South of the Saline, the Ouachita flows into Lake Jack Lee, a reservoir created by the Ouachita and Black River Project, just north of the Louisiana state line. The Felsenthal National Wildlife Refuge encompasses the Ouachita from the Saline River to Lake Jack Lee's mouth.

Below Lake Jack Lee, the Ouachita continues south into Louisiana. The river flows generally south through the state, collecting the tributary waters of Bayou Bartholomew, Bayou de Loutre, Bayou d'Arbonne, the Boeuf River, and the Tensas River.

The Ouachita has five locks and dams along its length, located at Camden, Calion, and Felsenthal, Arkansas, and in Columbia and Jonesville, Louisiana.

Black River[edit]

The river below the junction of the Tensas is called the Black River 31°16′22″N 91°50′01″W / 31.27278°N 91.83361°W / 31.27278; -91.83361 and flows for 41.6 miles (66.9 km)[2] in Catahoula Parish and Concordia Parish until it joins the Red River, which flows into both the Atchafalaya River and the Mississippi River, via the Old River Control Structure.

History[edit]

The river is named for the Ouachita tribe, one of several historic tribes who lived along it. Others included the Caddo, Osage Nation, Tensa, Chickasaw, and Choctaw. Washita is an Indian word meaning "good hunting grounds" and "sparkling silver water."

Before the rise of the historic tribes, their indigenous ancestors lived along the river for thousands of years. In the Lower Mississippi Valley, they began building monumental earthwork mounds in the Middle Archaic period (6000-2000 BC in Louisiana). The earliest construction was Watson Brake, an 11-mound complex built about 3500 BC by hunter gatherers in present-day Louisiana. The discovery and dating of several such early sites in northern Louisiana has changed the traditional model, which associated mound building with sedentary, agricultural societies, but these cultures did not develop for thousands of years.

The largest such prehistoric mound was destroyed in the 20th century during construction of a bridge at Jonesville, Louisiana. Likely built by the Mississippian culture, which rose about 1000 AD on the Mississippi and its tributaries, this mound was reported in use as late as 1540 by the Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto. On his expedition through this area, he encountered Indians occupying the site. A lightning strike destroyed the temple on the mound that year, which was seen as a bad omen by the tribe. They never rebuilt the temple, and were recorded as abandoning the site in 1736.

During the late 1700s, when the area was controlled by the Spanish and French, the river served as a route for early colonists, and for land speculators such as the self-styled Baron de Bastrop. The "Bastrop lands" later passed into the hands of another speculator, former Vice President Aaron Burr. He saw potential for big profits in the event of a war with Spain following the Louisiana Purchase. Burr and many of his associates were arrested for treason, before their band of armed settlers reached the Ouachita.

During the 1830s, the Ouachita River Valley attracted land speculators from New York and southeastern cities. Its rich soil and accessibility due to the country's elaborate river steamboat network made it desirable. Developers cultivated land for large cotton plantations; dependent on slave labor, cotton production supported new planter wealth in the ante-bellum years. Steamboats ran scheduled trips between Camden, Arkansas and New Orleans, for example. A person could travel from any eastern city to the Ouachita River without touching land, except to transfer from one steamboat to another.

One of the investors from the east was Meriwether Lewis Randolph, the youngest grandson of Thomas Jefferson. He was building a home on the Ouachita River in what is now Clark County, Arkansas, when he died of malaria in 1837. He had been appointed Secretary of the Arkansas Territory by President Andrew Jackson in 1835, and had relinquished his commission when Arkansas became a state in 1836.

Skirmishes took place near the Ouachita River during the American Civil War. On September 1, 1863, forces of the Seventeenth Wisconsin led by Brig. Gen. M.M. Crocker crossed from Natchez, Mississippi to Vidalia, the seat of Concordia Parish, and moved toward the lower Ouachita in the section called the Black River. That night the Confederate steamer Rinaldo was captured by Union forces after a short artillery duel and was destroyed. Crocker fought with the few troops stationed on the Black River and moved toward Harrisonburg, seat of Catahoula Parish.[3]

Navigation[edit]

A 337-mile long "Ouachita-Black Rivers Navigation Project" began in 1902, to create a navigable waterway from Camden, Arkansas to Jonesville, Louisiana, and when completed in 1924 included six locks and dams that were 84 feet wide and 600 feet in length, having from 3 to 5 tainter gates. Including the Black River the total navigable length is 351 miles.[4]

Natural history[edit]

A floating camp on the Ouachita River in Louisiana

The river continues to be utilized for commercial navigation on a smaller scale than during its "steamboat" days. It is fed by numerous small creeks containing endemic native fish such as killifish. Fishing remains popular in the river for black bass, white bass, bream, freshwater drum, and gar. Concerns about airborne mercury contamination in some areas discourage consumption of the fish for food. Fishing for rainbow trout is popular in the tailwaters of Lakes Ouachita, Hamilton and Catherine in and around Hot Springs, Arkansas.

The river is commercially navigable from Camden, Arkansas, to its terminal point in Jonesville in Catahoula Parish in eastern Louisiana. Upstream of Camden, the river receives substantial recreational use.

The Ouachita is lined for most of its length with deep woods, including substantial wetlands. It has a scenic quality representative of the southwestern Arkansas and northern Louisiana region.

Lists[edit]

Major towns along the river are:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Howard Perlman, USGS (2012-10-31). "Lengths of major rivers, from USGS Water-Science School". Ga.water.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2012-11-21. 
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed June 3, 2011
  3. ^ John D. Winters, The Civil War in Louisiana, Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1963, ISBN 0-8071-0834-0, pp. 302–303
  4. ^ Ouachita-Black River navigation- Retrieved 2017-03-05
  • William Least Heat-Moon, Roads to Quoz, An American Mosey (2008), ISBN 978-0-316-11025-9. Section I – "Down an Ancient Valley" describes a trip down the Ouachita River valley.

External links[edit]

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