This river system creates the largest single tributary and watershed in the entire Great Lakes. Draining over 4 million acres, this river courses from the confluence of the St. Joseph and St. Mary’s rivers in Fort Wayne, IN through the remnants of the Great Black Swamp to the western Lake Erie Basin at Toledo.
This waterway boasts some of the best walleye pike fishing during the Spring spawning season and is also deemed an Ohio Scenic River. Its mouth is capable of floating ocean vessels in the Port of Toledo.
Upper Wabash River
The origins of the Wabash are from two distinctly different sources. The assumed main flow is derived from channels and smaller streams in Mercer County, OH. The northern fork is referred to as the “Little (Wabash) River.” It and the Eel River, flow west out of Allen County.
This watershed and its tributaries were the heart of commerce, settlement and trade through much of the early history of Indiana. It dominates the state as a watershed, draining most of it. The influence it holds even inspired the state song, “On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away.”
Saint Joseph River (of the Maumee)
Originating near Hillsdale, MI, this river runs through northwest Ohio before entering Indiana. This river receives the runoff from parts of Allen, DeKalb, Noble, and Steuben Counties.
Flowing through mostly agricultural regions of the tri-state area, the character of this watershed lends itself to fishing, hunting, and boating. One of it’s main tributaries, Cedar Creek, is quite picturesque.
This river originally flowed into the Wabash River system.
Saint Mary’s River
Flowing out from St. Mary’s, OH and partly supplied from the Grand Lake St. Mary’s, this watershed travels through the Indiana counties of Adams, Allen and part of Wells before its final northward bend toward Fort Wayne, IN
This river system was diverted from the Wabash River system by the cataclysmic draining of ancient Lake Maumee at the end of the last Ice Age. It and the St. Joseph River, were ‘pirated’ into the developing Maumee River system.
The Eel River originates from the old ‘Heller’s Corners’ area of NW Allen County, just east of the junction of US 33 and Carroll Rds. A part of the Upper Wabash River watershed, it merges with the Wabash in the town of Logansport.
The name, as it implies, comes from the freshwater eel that was abundant in this waterway.
This waterway originates near Van Wert, OH and only makes a brief appearance in the most SE part of Allen County. Running through Monroeville, IN it exits the state back into Ohio just to the NE of town. It converges with the lower part of the Greater AuGlaize waterway. All of these waters then merge to form the Lower Maumee River watershed in Defiance, OH.