Questions about rivers answered PDF Print E-mail


By Jon Guttormsson, Mascot Columnist

Just for the "heck of it", I’m going to try and settle a discussion I’ve heard numerous times over a cup of coffee at either the Minneota Senior Center or the Roundup Office.
The topic of the discussion, and especially during the spring time when we have a large melting of snow creating flooding, or even a heavy rain, concerns what river actually runs through Minneota, what area it drains, and just where exactly does the Yellow Medicine flow in this area.
I have a reference manual, the Minnesota Atlas and Gazetteer, which includes topo maps of the entire State.

The Atlas is published by DeLorme Mapping.  How in the world it ever landed in our hall closet, I have no idea, but I have used it at various times.
Ready for the discussion?  
According to the Atlas, the river that winds it way through Minneota is the south branch of the Yellow Medicine river.  The North branch drains, along with the many various sized tributaries, to the Canby area and points northwest.
If you are familiar where my rural Taunton residence is, there’s a river that runs about 400 feet just north of us.
This river flows pretty much straight east from us, if you can call a "snake like" stream running straight east.
That’s the Yellow Medicine River. If you trace it back to its origin, you would find that it starts adjacent, or in the vicinity of Lake Shaokatan.
The north branch of the Yellow Medicine River joins west of us, barely over the County line in Lincoln County.
According to the map, there is a fork where the two join just north of Highway 68, and the fork could possibly be seen from the highway.
The south branch drains the townships south and west
of Minneota. It flows under the "North Bridge", enters Riverside Park, goes under the bridge there, and departs Minneota in an easterly direction.
The Yellow Medicine River, which now has the north branch in it, contiues to flow mostly east past the Helgeson farm, and eventually joins with the south branch just west of the Chuck Dalager rural residence.
I know there’s a pretty large fork where the two meet, because as kids we used the ice skate from the park in Minneota to where the rivers meet, because there was usually a pretty large area with nice ice.
There, now you have it, officially from the Minnesota Atlas and Gazetteer.
Will that settle the question for all concerned?
I personally doubt it, but I had a good time tracing the rivers in the Atlas.