White River (Arkansas)

From Academic Kids

The White River is a 722-mile-long river that flows through the US states of Arkansas and Missouri.

The source of the White River is in the Boston Mountains of northwest Arkansas near Fayetteville. The upper portions of the river are fast, cold, and clear and are internationally known for producing world-record trout. The river flows northwards from its source in northwest Arkansas, loops up through southwest Missouri near Branson and then travels back into Arkansas and on generally southeast to its mouth at the Mississippi River. Once the river enters the Mississippi River Delta region near Batesville, Arkansas the river becomes navigable to shallow-draft vessels and its speed decreases considerably.

A controversial plan to deepen the navigation channel of the river is under consideration though it is opposed by many Arkansans. The lower portion of the river contains a multitude of wildlife species including bear, turkey, alligator, songbirds, and over 160 species of fish. More mallard ducks winter on the lower White than any other place in the world. Many residents of Arkansas believe that deepening the navigation channel will adversely affect the wildlife which is a major source of tourism in the area.

Beaver Lake, Bull Shoals Lake and Table Rock Lake are man-made reservoirs created by the Army Corps of Engineers in the 1950s that lie on the White River. A total of 8 dams impound the upper White River, six in Arkansas and two in Missouri. The White River National Wildlife Refuge lies along the lower part of the river.

The major tributaries of the White River are the Black River and the Little Red River. Some cities that lie on the White River are Batesville, Arkansas and Newport, Arkansas.

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