Lower Big Sioux River

Beaver Creek tributary, Lower Big Sioux Watershed

Watershed at a Glance

The Lower Big Sioux River watershed covers 2,188,399 acres, mostly located in eastern South Dakota. A small portion lies in western parts of Lincoln, Pipestone, and Rock counties in southwestern Minnesota. There are several small to medium-sized tributaries.

Hydrologic Unit Code:10170203
Intensive monitoring start year:2011
Major lakesMajor rivers and streams
Split Rock Lake
Beaver Creek, Pipestone Creek, Split Rock Creek, Flandreau Creek


Land use in this watershed is primarily agriculture, with most land in row crops, although pasture and animal agriculture is also prevalent. Pipestone, Jasper and Beaver Creek are communities located in this watershed. There are no natural lakes in this watershed.

    What's being done

    In 2011, the Lower Big Sioux River watershed, along with three adjacent major watersheds located in the Missouri River Basin, will be starting the MPCA’s major watershed restoration and protection project process. Data collection, assessment, and implementation will occur over 10 years. Each project begins with intensive monitoring, where biological data is collected along with physical and chemical data of streams and lakes in selected watersheds. There are 138 proposed stream sites to be sampled for biological data, 23 stream sites for water quality and one site for fish tissue.

    Monitoring and assessment reports and data

    Water quality model supporting documents

    Implementation plans

    Strategy reports

    Kelli Nerem, MPCA project manager


    Nobles Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD)


    Pipestone County Conservation and Zoning