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Emory River Watershed (06010208) of the Tennessee River Basin – Group 1 (2002)

In 2014 TDEC hosted a joint meeting for the Emory River Watershed and the Watts Bar Lake Watershed. This was the fifth event for the Emory River watershed and the fourth for the Watts Bar Lake Watershed since the implementation of the watershed management approach in 1996. This event brought together many different agencies, groups and citizens and successfully engaged the public by sharing information about the people who live in the watershed and the activities and projects that are in place or are being planned. Agencies and groups had the chance to seek opportunities to collaborate efforts and citizens had a chance to learn about their watershed and about water quality issues. Displays filled the pavilion! This was a great chance for hands on education for all ages.

Some partners in attendance: Local citizens, Emory River Watershed Association, the Obed Watershed Community Association, Tennessee Citizens for Wilderness Planning, UT Cumberland Habitat Conservation Plan, Tennessee Tech Water Center, City of Crossville, Natural Resources Conservation Service, US Army Corps of Engineers, TN Department of Transportation, TN Department of Agriculture Forestry, TN Department of Agriculture 319 Program, TN Stream Mitigation Program, University of TN Extension, & Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency

Water Quality Management Plan

Emory River Watershed Map

The Emory River Watershed includes cool, clear streams with high gradients. The Emory River Watershed is located in East Tennessee and includes parts of Bledsoe, Cumberland, Fentress, Morgan and Roane counties. It is approximately 872 square miles and drains to the Clinch River embayment of Watts bar Reservoir.

The Emory River Watershed contains one natural area, Frozen Head Designated State Natural Area. The natural area is 11,876 acres of relatively undisturbed forest containing some of the richest wildflower areas in Tennessee. There are 68 Documented Rare Plant and Animal Species in the Emory River Watershed.

Parts of Clear Creek, Daddy’s Creek, the Emory River and the Obed River are designated as part of the National Wild and Scenic River System. The National Wild and Scenic Rivers System was created by Congress in 1968 in an effort to preserve streams in their free-flowing condition.

Other sites within the Emory River Watershed include:

  • Cumberland Mountain State Park, a 1720 acre park located in Crossville.
  • Obed Wild and Scenic River National Recreational Area, which has 45 miles of streams available for swimming, fishing, whitewater rafting and kayaking.
  • Cumberland Trail State Park, established in 1998 as a linear park with trails to extend 17 miles through the Obed Wild and Scenic River National Recreation area.
  • Mount Roosevelt State Forest offers hiking and backpacking trails through breathtaking scenery.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 - Watershed Approach to Water Quality

Chapter 2 - Description of the Emory River Watershed

Chapter 3 - Water Quality Assessment of the Emory River Watershed

Chapter 4 (1.36 mb) - Point and Nonpoint Source Characterization of the Emory River Watershed

Chapter 5 (1.4 mb) - Water Quality Partnerships in the Emory River Watershed

Chapter 6 - Future Plans

Title Page for Emory River Watershed

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

Waters with EPA Approved Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL)

Waters with EPA Approved Total Maximum Daily Loads

  • Crab Orchard Creek - Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for pH in the Crab Orchard Creek subwatershed, part of the Emory River watershed, located in eastern Tennessee. Approved 12/17/2001.
  • Emory River - Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for Siltation and Habitat Alteration in the Emory River Watershed in Bledsoe, Cumberland, Fentress, Morgan, and Roane Counties. Approved 07/31/2006.
  • Watts Bar Reservoir - Total Maximum Daily Load for PCBs in Watts Bar Reservoir in the Emory River Watershed in Loudon, Meigs, Morgan, Rhea and Roane Counties. Approved 03/18/2010.