At 1,469 miles long, it is the sixth longest river in the United States and the second-longest tributary in the Mississippi-Missouri system. Art, Music, Literature, Sports and leisure, McClellan-Kerr_Arkansas_River_Navigation_System, https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/p/index.php?title=Arkansas_River&oldid=995292, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License, Width of channel: mostly 250 ft (76 m). This area had long been traditional territory of the Osage. It includes the Arkansas Post Canal, a short canal named for nearby Arkansas Post National Memorial, connecting the Arkansas and White Rivers. It continues eastward across the plains and forests of eastern Arkansas until it flows into the Mississippi River near Napoleon, Arkansas. Colorado Division of Wildlife Fishing Reports, "Experts Close In On What Killed Fish - NW Arkansas News Story - KHBS NW Arkansas", "Arkansas River Fish Kill Investigation Continues", "Gas Bubble Trauma likely cause of fish kills", Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture - Arkansas River, Oklahoma Digital Maps: Digital Collections of Oklahoma and Indian Territory, "Arkansas, a river of the United States of America", "Arkansas, a S. W. river of the United States", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Arkansas_River&oldid=999837547, Articles with dead external links from May 2019, Articles with permanently dead external links, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the New International Encyclopedia, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from EB9, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from The American Cyclopaedia, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from The American Cyclopaedia with a Wikisource reference, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 12 January 2021, at 05:43. Through Oklahoma and Arkansas, dams artificially deepen and widen this modest sized river to build it into a commercially navigable body of water. The Arkansas River is a major tributary of the Mississippi River. Gordon, Alice, Jerry Camarillo Dunn, Mel White, Tim Thompson, and Roger G. Kennedy. This section (including The Numbers, Brown's Canyon, and the Royal Gorge) sees extensive whitewater rafting in the spring and summer. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District/ Mission/Navigation. The fast flow and high water on the Arkansas River has had "devastating" consequences for river commerce, the director of the Arkansas Waterways Commission said Tuesday. The name "Arkansas" was first applied by Father Jacques Marquette, who called the river Akansa in his journal of 1673. [17][a], French traders and trappers who had opened up trade with Indian tribes in Canada and the areas around the Great Lakes began exploring the Mississippi and some of its northern tributaries. The mouth has changed since plotting by USGS. Also in the 1540s Hernando de Soto discovered the junction of the Arkansas with the Mississippi. While it was previously thought that this relict channel was active at the same time as another relict of Mississippi River's meander belt, it has been shown that this channel of the Arkansas was inactive approximately 400 years before the Mississippi channel was active.[11]. Many varieties of ferns and flowers exist on the banks providing good year-round scenery. The Arkansas River is not a tailwater. They turned to making and using dugout canoes, which they called pirogues, made by hollowing out the trunks of cottonwood trees. From 1819 the Adams-Onís Treaty set the Arkansas as part of the frontier between the United States and Spanish Mexico, which it remained until the annexation of Texas and the Mexican-American War in 1846. The Kansas–Oklahoma Arkansas River Basin Compact was created in 1965 to promote mutual consideration and equity over water use in the basin shared by those states. Water flow in the Arkansas River (as measured in central Kansas) has dropped from approximately 248 cubic feet per second (7.0 m3/s) average from 1944–1963 to 53 cubic feet per second (1.5 m3/s) average from 1984–2003, largely because of the pumping of groundwater for irrigation in eastern Colorado and western Kansas. [15], The McClellan–Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System diverts from the Arkansas River 2.5 mi (4.0 km) upstream of the Wilbur D. Mills Dam to avoid the long winding route which the lower Arkansas River follows. This continued until the United States annexed Texas after the Mexican–American War, in 1846. In 1806 the American explorer Zebulon Pike traveled through the river's upper reaches. 1990. Seventeen dams and locks along the waterway, which is 250 ft (75 m) wide and 9 ft deep, create a large supply of hydroelectric power. Through the rest of Colorado, through Kansas, and through northern Oklahoma to Tulsa, it is a typical Great Plains riverway, with wide shallow banks subject to seasonal flooding. Main trail is approximately 7 miles long. Initially, the Union Army abandoned its forts in the Indian Territory, including Fort Gibson and Fort Smith, in order to maximize its strength for campaigns elsewhere. If a number of tributaries merge to form a larger river, how would you define where the river actually begins? There was a volunteering event organized to clean up the river and to my surprise, we found plastic buckets, tons of plastic bottles and covers found and buried in the sand around the river. The river forms a series of long, quiet pools and short, hairpin turns. Whether it’s one’s first time on the Arkansas, or it’s simply been a long time, a review of the traits that distinguish this river from others is helpful. It flows east into the Midwest via Kansas, and finally into the South through Oklahoma and Arkansas. The water is fed by melted snowpack from the Sawatch and Mosquito mountain ranges. in accordance with New World Encyclopedia standards. In 1859, placer gold discovered in the Leadville area brought thousands seeking to strike it rich, but the easily recovered placer gold was quickly exhausted. [10], The path of the Arkansas River has changed over time. The wood is soft and easily worked with the crude tools carried by both the French and Indians. Brown and Rainbow Trout tend to dominate the river. This circuitous portion of the Arkansas River between the Wilbur D. Mills Dam and the Mississippi River was historically bypassed by river vessels. In the 1880s, Charles "Buffalo" Jones, one of the cofounders of Garden City, Kansas, organized four irrigation companies to take water one hundred miles from the Arkansas River to cultivate 75,000 acres (300 km2) of land. "[31] Tests later indicated the likely cause of the kill was gas bubble trauma caused by opening the spillways on the Ozark Dam. The corridor alternates between pastureland and dense forests of birch, hickory, oak, sweet gum and elm. [25] Today, brown trout dominate the river, which also contains rainbow trout. Pirogues are still used in the swamps and marshes of South Louisiana by descendants of the "Cajuns," who were exiled from eastern Canada by the British. This article abides by terms of the Creative Commons CC-by-sa 3.0 License (CC-by-sa), which may be used and disseminated with proper attribution. The headwaters of the Arkansas River in central Colorado have been known for exceptional trout fishing, particularly fly fishing, since the 19th century, when greenback cutthroat trout dominated the river. In eastern Oklahoma the river begins to widen further into a more contained consistent channel. McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System, McClellan–Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System, List of longest rivers of the United States (by main stem), "McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System (MKARNS)", "USGS Gage #07263500 Arkansas River at Little Rock, AR", "Chaffee County Colorado Gold Production", "McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System 2016 Inland Waterway Fact Sheet", Wright, Muriel H. "Early Navigation and Commerce along the Arkansas and Red Rivers in Oklahoma.". It flows east into the Midwest via Kansas, and finally into the South through Oklahoma and Arkansas. Flooding in 1927 severely damaged or destroyed nearly every levee downstream of Fort Smith, and led to the development of the Arkansas River Flood Control Association. Larger barge packets must be broken down and passed through the lock in sections, and rejoined on the opposite side. Water flow in the Arkansas River (as measured in central Kansas) has dropped from approximately 248 cubic feet per second (7 m³/s) average from 1944-1963 to 53 cubic feet per second (1.5 m³/s) average from 1984-2003, largely because of the pumping of groundwater for irrigation in eastern Colorado and western Kansas. The Arkansas River flows east and southeast through Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas, with the source basin sitting right in the Arkansas River Valley of Buena Vista, CO. [13] "The name "Arkansas" was first applied by French Father Jacques Marquette, who called the river Akansa in his journal of 1673. The height of the banks varies from a few feet to 30+ feet bluffs. During the American Civil War, each side tried to prevent the other from using the Arkansas River and its tributaries as a route for moving reinforcements. After the 1943 action, the states developed the Arkansas River Compact, which was intended to apportion the Arkansas River between the two states. Many nations of Native Americans lived near or along the Arkansas River in its 1,450 mile (2334 km) stretch, but the first Europeans to see the river were members of the Coronado expedition on June 29, 1541 near the site of Dodge City, Kansas. With over 100 miles of river, the Arkansas provides opportunities for adventure seekers of all kinds. The Joliet-Marquette expedition travelled the Mississippi River from Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin toward the Gulf of Mexico, but turned back at the mouth of the Arkansas River. It continues to play an important role in the central states, feeding that region's important farmlands. The Arkansas River is quite shallow through Arkansas and Oklahoma, and was naturally incapable of supporting river traffic though most of the year. 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