A watershed is an area of land that contributes, or drains water to a given a stream, creek, or another body of water. These drainage points are called points of interest. Small watersheds are part of the larger watersheds that drain to rivers, lakes, and oceans.
Here in the Borough, we are a part of the Spring Creek Watershed. The rain that falls on our town flows first into Spring Creek, and then into Bald Eagle Creek at Milesburg. Bald Eagle Creek flows into the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, which ultimately flows to the Chesapeake Bay.
Mountains, ridges, and highpoints are what dictate the path of stormwater as it makes its way across land into streams and rivers. But entering a river and flowing downstream is not the only way water moves. Percolation, infiltration, and groundwater flow are all other types of water movement within a watershed.
The Formation of Pennsylvania
The topography of the land has a major role in the direction of water flow within a watershed. As rainwater moves from mountains and ridges, through valleys and creeks into streams and rivers, it follows the path of least resistance. But why do some of it soak into the ground while more of it just continues downstream. And how does the water underground affect the path the surface water takes? These questions can be answered by taking a history lesson in the Geological Story of PA.