The Mississippi River watershed • Earth.com

Last update: September 20th, 2019 at 2:00 am

The Mississippi River watershed is the fourth largest in the world, and the largest drainage basin in North America. It extends from the Allegheny Mountains in the east to the Rocky Mountains in the west, covering about 3.2 million square kilometers (13.1 million square miles) and draining all or parts of 2 Canadian provinces and 31 U.S. states.. The watershed includes all or parts of 31 states and 2 Canadian Provinces.

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a true-color image on the lower Mississippi River and Mississippi Delta on December 10, 2016.

The meanders of the Mississippi River are tan in color, indicating the waters carry suspended sediment. Sediment pours from the Mississippi Delta into the Gulf of Mexico. The Mississippi Valley, which curves to the north-northeast in the image, wears autumn tan. It is a rich agricultural region, but cool winter weather means most vegetation is senescent or the cropland is fallow. A bank of low cloud (fog) lies over low-lying forested areas west of the Mississippi.

Credit: NASA

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