Herring Highway

Herring Highway (HM26QE)

Location: Washington, DC 20012
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 57.907', W 77° 2.879'

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A natural low area made this portion of Rock Creek a perfect place to ford the creek on foot, horseback or by carriage. Concrete paving was installed at Milkhouse Ford in the early 1900s to accommodate heavy carriages and automobiles. Unless the creek was running high, the pavement allowed only 1 inch of water to flow over it, blocking migrating fish from reaching areas further upstream.

To restore the ancient migratory route of native herring while restoring the historic creek crossing, the paved ford was rebuilt at a lower level. Boulder step pools were added to make a flowing "ladder" for fish to swim up and around an active sewer line. Because of alterations such as these Rock Creek can be a "Herring Highway" once more.

Please leave the rocks where they are. Future Herring populations depend on these pools and channels for migration upstream in their ancestral spawning ground.

Milkhouse ford is 7 miles upstream from the Potomac River.

Rock Creek meanders 33 miles from its source is Montgomery County, Maryland through suburban and densely populated urban areas until it reaches the Potomac River. From there the water continues to flow southeast 112 miles to the Chesapeake Bay and another 80 miles to the Atlantic Ocean.
HM NumberHM26QE
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, April 11th, 2018 at 7:01am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 322566 N 4314900
Decimal Degrees38.96511667, -77.04798333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 57.907', W 77° 2.879'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 57' 54.42" N, 77° 2' 52.74" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202
Closest Postal AddressAt or near Rock Creek Trail, Washington DC 20012, US
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