Longest Rivers in the USA

Answers » United States » Longest Rivers in the USA

Longest Rivers in the USA

4.2/5 - (22 votes)
4.2/5 - (22 votes)
Longest Rivers in the USA
Map showing longest rivers of the USA.

The United States is a large country with about 250,000 rivers and around 3.5 million miles of riverways. Numerous rivers traverse multiple states, earning them recognition among the longest rivers globally. In this article, we’ll explore the longest river in the United States, some interesting facts about it, as well as other long rivers and more.

Longest River in the USA

The longest river in the United States is the Missouri River. It starts high up in the mountains of Montana and then travels through four other states before it reaches St. Louis. It’s about 2,540 miles long and has 95 important smaller rivers flowing into it, like the Platte River, Yellowstone River, and Kansas River.

For thousands of years, Native American tribes like the Blackfeet, Hidatsa, and Crow lived in the area around the upper Missouri River. Eventually, the Missouri River joins the Mississippi River, and together they flow into the Gulf of Mexico. This makes the Missouri River system the fourth largest river system in the world.

Interesting Facts about the Missouri River

  • Once renowned as the “Big Muddy” due to its significant sediment load, the Missouri River now experiences a marked decrease in sediment accumulation.
  • Whether you love boating, fishing, camping, or birdwatching, the Missouri River’s beauty attracts people from around the world.
  • Missouri River presently serves as a source of clean energy, regulates flooding, facilitates irrigation for expansive agricultural lands, and provides recreational opportunities.

Other longest Rivers in the United States

Apart from the Missouri River, here are the other 9 rivers which are the longest:

  1. Mississippi River

    The Mississippi River is about 2,340 miles long. The river starts at a place, called Lake Itasca in Minnesota and goes way down to the Gulf of Mexico, which is in the southern part of the United States. Where the river meets the Gulf of Mexico, there’s something called the Mississippi River Delta. The Mississippi River is a home to many types of animals. There are about 360 kinds of fish, 326 kinds of birds, 145 kinds of amphibians (like frogs), and 50 kinds of mammals that live there.

  2. Yukon River

    The Yukon River is really long, it’s the third longest river in the United States. It stretches for about 1,980 miles from where it starts in Canada, going through the Yukon Territory and Alaska. The area around the Yukon River doesn’t have many people and isn’t very developed compared to other parts of North America. It’s famous for having minerals, especially gold. Lots of different animals live there, like moose, bears, wolves, and birds that fly to different places at different times of the year.

  3. Rio Grande

    The Rio Grande is the fourth longest river in the United States. It starts in Colorado and stretches for about 1,900 miles. It goes through New Mexico and Texas, and it’s a big part of the border between the United States and Mexico before it reaches the Gulf of Mexico. In the area around the Rio Grande, the main industries are mining (like getting petroleum, natural gas, and coal), farming, and raising animals. The different parts of the Rio Grande are really beautiful, with two areas that are protected because they’re so wild and scenic, two national monuments, and even a national park.

  4. Arkansas River

    The Arkansas River is the fifth longest river in the United States, stretching for about 1,469 miles. It starts in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado and goes through Kansas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas before it meets the Mississippi River. This river is super important for trade and business in the region. Lots of different animals, both on land and in the water, call the Arkansas River home.

  5. Colorado River

    Colorado River is around 1450 miles and is the 6th longest river in the United States. The Colorado River is super important in the southwest part of the United States and starts in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. It goes through seven states before ending up in the Gulf of California, Mexico. Plus, it’s famous for making cool things like the Grand Canyon. But, there are problems like too much water being used, not enough rain, and worries about nature getting hurt.

  6. Columbia River

    Columbia River is about 1,243 miles long and starts in Canada before flowing through Washington and Oregon. This river is super important because it provides water for farms, businesses, and cities in the area. It’s also great for shipping goods because big boats can sail on it. People love to go fishing in the Columbia River because there are lots of different kinds of fish there. But, like many rivers, it’s facing problems like pollution and changes to the environment. It is really important for everyone to work together to keep the Columbia River healthy.

  7. Red River

    Red River has a length of 1360 miles and is one of the major rivers in the southern United States of America. It is seen as the boundary of Texas and Oklahoma. The beautiful bridge constructed over the river enables the visitors to feel its enormity. Rare animal species like blue catfish and striped bass attract travelers. Common migratory birds are Great blue herons, belted kingfishers, golden eagles, bald eagles, etc.

  8. Snake River

    The Snake River has a length of 1078 miles. The river lives up to its name as it follows a complex path before reaching its final destination. It starts in western Wyoming and goes through Idaho, Oregon, and Washington before meeting up with the Columbia River. People love the Snake River because it has deep gorges, rough canyons, and fertile valleys. The river is also home to lots of different plants and animals, including some that are in danger of disappearing, like salmon and steelhead fish.

  9. Ohio River

    The Ohio River is a big river in the eastern United States, stretching about 981 miles long. It starts in Pennsylvania and flows through several states, including Ohio, West Virginia, Indiana, and Illinois, before joining the Mississippi River in Illinois. The Ohio River is famous for its role in American history, as it was a vital transportation route for settlers and traders in the past. People also enjoy recreational activities like boating and fishing on the Ohio River.

Related Links

Recent Posts