Upper Grand Watershed

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Hydrologic Unit Code: 04050004

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Watershed Overview

Totaling 1,750 square miles and 958 miles of streams and rivers, the Upper Grand River Watershed flows into the Lower Grand River watershed and ultimately discharges into Lake Michigan. A total of 8 impaired waters have been identified within the watershed.

The Cities of Lansing, East Lansing and Jackson are the major urban centers within the watershed that is otherwise 65% agricultural in land use. Between the years of 1996 and 2001, there has been a slight increase in developed land, wetlands, and farmland, and a slightly larger decrease in grassland.

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Watershed Activities

Development has made a significant impact to several areas in the watershed. An increase in impervious area and use of agricultural drain tiles has led to higher stormwater flows and flashier streams.

An MDEQ 319 Grant was awarded to the Jackson County Drain Commissioner’s Office to develop an Upper and Lower Grand River watershed management plan. In the plan, the following goals were identified:

  • Maintain and improve water quality by promoting sound land management decisions.
  • Assess relationships between water quality and storm water runoff by developing guidelines for stormwater management to reduce impacts or urbanization.
  • Preserve and restore coldwater fisheries and reintroduce indigenous game fish species where possible.
  • Provide for flood protection, minimize risk of flooding, and assess necessity of flood control improvements.
  • Ensure public safety in recreational opportunities in surface waters.
  • Protect healthy habitats for native aquatic life and wildlife

Watershed Groups

For more information, see the USEPA “Surf Your Watershed”website or contact the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment at 517-335-6969 to request a copy of the following reports:

  • Upper Grand: Report #07/072 “A biological survey of the Upper Grand River Watershed”
  • Red Cedar (2001): MI/DEQ/WD-03/025
  • Looking Glass (2002): MI/DEQ/WD-03/120

Watershed Management Plans

  • Carrier Creek – Eaton County Drain Commission
  • Upper and Lower Grand River – Grand Valley State University Annis Water Resources Institute
  • Upper Looking Glass River

Watershed Data and Information

USGS Water Resources Links for: 04050004 - Upper Grand

USGS State Information and Contacts:

Current Water Data:

All Water Data (Current and Historic Sites):

Other Data Links:

Current Regional/National Conditions:

Search USGS for Links, Publications and Web Sites Associated with:

EPA Links for the Upper Grand - HUC 04050004:

Invasive Species

To report invasive species, you can send an alert via e-mail or call 1-877-STOP-ANS.

Impaired (303d) Waters

A listing of impaired waters can be found on the U.S. EPA website for the Upper Grand Watershed


Subwatersheds of the Upper Grand River Watershed

Information on other Lake Michigan subwatersheds can be found at Lake Michigan Subwatershed Information

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HUC Watershed Name
04050004 0101 Wolf Lake
04050004 0102 Grass Lake Drain
04050004 0103 Center Lake
04050004 0104 Headwaters Grand River
04050004 0105 Booth Drain-Grand River
04050004 0106 Hurd Narvin Grain-Grand River
04050004 0201 Cahoogan Creek
04050004 0202 Headwaters Portage River
04050004 0203 Orchard Creek
04050004 0204 Protage Lake-Portage River
04050004 0205 Batteese Creek
04050004 0206 White Lake-Protage River
04050004 0207 Portage River
04050004 0208 Huntoon Creek
04050004 0209 Western Creek-Grand River
04050004 0210 Perry Creek-Grand River
04050004 0301 Indian Brook-Sandstone Creek
04050004 0302 Mackey Brook-Sandstone Creek
04050004 0303 Sandstone Creek
04050004 0304 Willow Creek
04050004 0305 Otter Creek-Spring Brook
04050004 0306 Peacock Extension-Spring Brook
04050004 0307 Spring Brook
04050004 0308 Kettler and Norris Drain-Grand River
04050004 0401 Handy Howell Drain-red Cedar River
04050004 0402 Middle Branch Red Cedar River
04050004 0403 Handy Drain No 5-Red Cedar River
04050004 0404 Headwaters West Branch Red Cedar River
04050004 0405 West Branch Red Cedar River
04050004 0406 Kalamink Creek
04050004 0407 Wolf Creek-Red Cedar River
04050004 0408 Hayhoe Drain-Doan Creek
04050004 0409 Dietz Creek
04050004 0410 Doan Creek
04050004 0411 Squaw Creek-Red Cedar River
04050004 0501 Deer Creek
04050004 0502 Sloan Creek
04050004 0503 Coon Creek-Red Cedar River
04050004 0504 Pine Lake Outlet
04050004 0505 Mud Creek
04050004 0506 Headwaters Sycamore Creek
04050004 0507 Sycamore Creek
04050004 0508 Red Cedar River
04050004 0601 Headwaters Looking Glass River
04050004 0602 Howard Drain-Looking Glass River
04050004 0603 Kellog Drain-Looking Glass River
04050004 0604 Buck Branch-Vermillion Creek
04050004 0605 Vermillion Creek
04050004 0606 Leisure Lakes-Looking Glass River
04050004 0607 Mud Creek-Looking Glass River
04050004 0608 Remey Chandler Drain
04050004 0609 Turkey Creek Drain-Looking Glass River
04050004 0610 Summers Drain-Looking Glass River
04050004 0611 Husted and Landenburg Drain-Looking Glass River
04050004 0612 Looking Glass River
04050004 0701 Columbia Creek
04050004 0702 Skinner Extension Drain-Grand River
04050004 0703 Silver Creek-Grand River
04050004 0704 Carrier Creek-Grand River
04050004 0705 Sandstone Creek-Grand River
04050004 0706 Frayer Creek-Grand River
04050004 0707 Winchell and Union Drain-Sebewa Creek
04050004 0708 Sebewa Creek
04050004 0709 Cryderman Lake Drain-Grand River
04050004 0710 Goose Creek-Grand River

Information on other Lake Michigan subwatersheds can be found at Lake Michigan Subwatershed Information