The Crow Wing River watershed includes over 627 lakes 10 acres in size or greater as well as 1,653 stream and river miles. The Crow Wing River flows into the Mississippi River at Crow Wing State Park. Land use in the Crow Wing River watershed is mostly forested and agriculture.
There are a large number of pristine, high-value recreational lakes in the Crow Wing River Watershed and several cold water streams that support trout are located in the watershed. A handful of lakes and a few tributaries do not meet water quality standards for beneficial uses such as aquatic recreation, drinking, and swimming. The main lake pollutant is phosphorus, causing algae blooms in summer months.
What's being done
Monitoring and assessment
Monitoring of many lakes and streams began in 2010 as part of the MPCA’s intensive watershed monitoring effort.
- HSPF Watershed Modeling Report: Crow Wing, Redeye, and Long Prairie River watersheds (wq-ws1-14)
- Crow Wing River Watershed Monitoring and Assessment Report
- Crow Wing River Watershed Stressor Identification Report
- Crow Wing River Watershed Stressor Identification Report Summary
Strategy development for restoration and protection
Protection strategies are also being developed to keep the remaining waterbodies from degrading. SWCDs and other local partners within the 8 counties are working together with the MPCA, as well as leading their own water quality projects in the watershed.
- Our Upper Mississippi River Large River and Basin Restoration and Protection Strategies (wq-ws4-38b)
- Crow Wing River Watershed: Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy Report (wq-ws4-09a) (MPCA approval 2/2/2015)
- Crow Wing River Watershed TMDL (wq-iw8-45e) (EPA approval 11/19/2014)
- Crow Wing River Watershed: EPA approval letter (wq-iw8-45g)