Wild & Scenic Rivers

The National Wild & Scenic Rivers (WSR) System was created by Congress in 1968 to preserve rivers that contain outstanding natural, cultural, and recreational values in a free-flowing system, and are for the enjoyment of present and future generations. 

For a river to be eligible for WSR designation, it must be free flowing, and possess one or more outstandingly remarkable values. Outstanding remarkable values include: scenery, recreation, fish, historic and cultural, geography, and other values. Further information on the process of selecting National Wild & Scenic Rivers can be found in Chapter 80 of the Land Management Handbook.

Photo Credits: Tim Palmer

For more information on the Wild & Scenic Rivers process check out the WSR Presentation presented  at the Wild & Scenic Rivers Educational Forums in June 2016.  

View our WSR Story Map for maps and detailed information on the Wild & Scenic Rivers Process. 

The maps at the Wild & Scenic Rivers Educational Forums are available here