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Watauga River Watershed (06010103) of the Tennessee River Basin – Group 1 (2002)

On November 13, 2014, TDEC hosted a watershed event for the Watauga River Watershed. This was the fourth event focusing on the Watauga River watershed since we started implementing the watershed management approach in 1996. This meeting brought together many different agencies, groups, schools and citizens who live work and play in this watershed. Displays filled the room at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park in Elizabethton and offered a great chance for hands on education for all ages.

Some partners in attendance: TDEC Division of Water Resources, Boone Watershed Partnership, Trout Unlimited Overmountain Chapter, Roan Mountain State Park, Friends of Roan Mountain, Johnson City Stormwater Management, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, Tennessee Valley Authority, US Army Corps of Engineers, Tennessee Department of Transportation Beautification Office, Middle Nolichucky Watershed Alliance, Crystal Stream Technologies, Washington County Soil Conservation District, Brushy Fork Environmental Consultant, Mattern & Craig and Tennessee Department of Agriculture-319 Program.

Water Quality Management Plan

Watauga River Watershed Map

The Tennessee portion of Watauga River Watershed is located in East Tennessee and includes parts of Carter, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington Counties. The Watauga River Watershed drains approximately 614 square miles in Tennessee and into the Boone Reservoir. The entire watershed drains approximately 816 square miles.

The Watauga River Watershed has two Designated Natural Areas:

There are 123 Documented Rare Plant and Animal Species in the Watauga River Watershed.

Other sites within the Watauga River Watershed include:

  • Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area, the site of a frontier settlement, the reconstruction of Fort Watauga, and a hiking/fitness trail. Learn more at
  • Tipton-Haynes Historic Site, location of the Battle of the Lost State of Franklin and a museum.

In addition, many local interpretive areas are common, most notably the Doe River Covered Bridge, a white clapboard bridge built in 1882 across the Doe River.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 - Watershed Approach to Water Quality

Chapter 2 - Description of the Watauga River Watershed

Chapter 3 - Water Quality Assessment of the Watauga River Watershed

Chapter 4 - (1.08mb) Point and Nonpoint Source Characterization of the Watauga River Watershed

Chapter 5 - Water Quality Partnerships in the Watauga River Watershed

Chapter 6 - Future Plans

Title Page for Watauga River Watershed

Appendices: Appendix I, Appendix II, Appendix III, Appendix IV, Appendix V

Waters with EPA Approved Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL)

Watauga River - Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for Siltation and Habitat Alteration in the Watauga River Watershed in Carter, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington Counties. Approved 03/29/2006.

Watauga River - Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for E. Coli in the Watauga River Watershed in Carter, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi, and Washington Counties. Approved 04/17/2006.

Boone Reservoir - Total Maximum Daily Load for Chlordane and Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB’s) in the South Fork Holston River and Watauga River Watersheds in Sullivan and Washington Counties. Approved 06/26/2007.