Fish and Aquatic Life
Harrison Creek, located in central Vernon County, flows in a southeasterly direction for 3.5
miles before reaching the West Fork of the Kickapoo River near its mouth. This stream has a
gradient of 49 feet per mile and drains forested hillsides and an agricultural valley. Harrison
Creek is a Class II trout stream for its entire length.
The most recent survey, conducted in 1998, documented brown trout and numerous forage
fish species. The stream bottom was dominated by sand, followed by silt with small amounts
of gravel. In-stream cover consisted of undercut banks and woody debris. Problems noted
include streambank erosion and overgrazing of livestock. Harrison Creek would benefit from
the purchase of streambank easements from willing sellers and the restoration of in-stream
habitat. WDNR records indicate that Harrison Creek has been stocked with brown trout since
1960 and with wild brown trout since 1998. Access to Harrison Creek is from four road
From: Ripp, Coreen, Koperski, Cindy and Folstad, Jason. 2002. The State of the Lower Wisconsin River Basin.
PUBL WT-559-2002. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
Author Cynthia Koperski
Harrison Creek, T12N, R3W, Section 33. Surface Acres = 3.4. Miles = 3.5. Gradient = 48.7 feet per mile.
A clear. hard water stream that flows in a southeasterly direction and is a tributary of the West Fork Kickapoo River. The stream is Class III brown trout water. During the winter aerial groundwater survey, four scattered open water areas were found from two miles downstream from the head to the stream mouth. Sand dominates the bottom types, with some gravel, rubble, and silt present in near equal amounts along with small quantities of boulder and clay. There is access from five road crossings. Muskrat are significant. and wood duck broods are raised along the stream. Small numbers of migrant puddle ducks also use the water.
From: Klick, Thomas A. and Threinen, C.W. 1973. Lake and Stream Classification Project. Surface Water Resources of Vernon County. Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Harrison Creek (WBIC 1188000) was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new biological (fish Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) scores) sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Fish and Aquatic Life use. This water was meeting this designated use and was not considered impaired.
Author Ashley Beranek
Wisconsin has over 84,000 miles of streams, 15,000 lakes and milllions of acres of wetlands. Assessing the condition of this vast amount of water is challenging. The state's water monitoring program uses a media-based, cross-program approach to analyze water condition. An updated monitoring strategy (2015-2020) is now available. Compliance with Clean Water Act fishable, swimmable standards are located in the Executive Summary of Water Condition in 2018. See also the 'monitoring and projects' tab.
Wisconsin's Water Quality Standards provide qualitative and quantitative goals for waters that are protective of Fishable, Swimmable conditions [Learn more]. Waters that do not meet water quality standards are considered impaired and restoration actions are planned and carried out until the water is once again fishable and swimmable
Management goals can include creation or implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load analysis, a Nine Key Element Plan, or other restoration work, education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below online.
Monitoring the condition of a river, stream, or lake includes gathering physical, chemical, biological, and habitat data. Comprehensive studies often gather all these parameters in great detail, while lighter assessment events will involve sampling physical, chemical and biological data such as macroinvertebrates. Aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish communities integrate watershed or catchment condition, providing great insight into overall ecosystem health. Chemical and habitat parameters tell researchers more about human induced problems including contaminated runoff, point source dischargers, or habitat issues that foster or limit the potential of aquatic communities to thrive in a given area. Wisconsin's Water Monitoring Strategy was recenty updated.
Grants and Management Projects
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||633174||Harrison Creek at Harrison Valley Rd Near Reedstown WI||5/23/2001||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||10022574||Harrison Creek - Harrison Rd. (2nd Crossing)||9/14/2012||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||10022575||Harrison Creek - Fenceline Above 3rd Crossing On Harrison Valley Rd.||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||10041590||Harrison Creek at stream crossing 500 ft South of N Harrison Hollow Rd.||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||10022573||Harrison Creek - Larson Rd. Crossing||1/1/2015||10/19/2016||Map||Data|
|1188000||Harrison Creek||10041593||Harrison Creek at driveway crossing South of Harrison Valley Rd||1/1/2015||1/1/2015||Map||Data|
Harrison Creek is located in the West Fork Kickapoo River watershed which is 118.04 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (41.10%), grassland (29%) and a mix of agricultural (25.50%) and other uses (4.40%). This watershed has 283.75 stream miles, 49.18 lake acres and 672.36 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked High for runoff impacts on streams, Not Ranked for runoff impacts on lakes and High for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of High. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.However, all waters are affected by diffuse pollutant sources regardless of initial water quality. Applications for specific runoff projects under state or county grant programs may be pursued. For more information, go to surface water program grants.