Smoky Hill River

river in Colorado and Kansas, United States

The Smoky Hill River is a 575-mile (925 km)[4] river in the central Great Plains of North America. It goes through the U.S. states of Colorado and Kansas.[5]

Smoky Hill River
Aahkawirarahkata, Chetolah, Oke-see-sebo[1], River of the Padoucas[2]
Smoky Hill River-0508.jpg
Smoky Hill River near Assaria, Kansas
Map of the Smoky Hill drainage basin
CountryUnited States
StateColorado, Kansas
Physical characteristics
 - locationCheyenne County, Colorado
 - coordinates38°57′01″N 102°34′49″W / 38.95028°N 102.58028°W / 38.95028; -102.58028[1]
 - elevation4,640 ft (1,410 m)
MouthKansas River
 - locationJunction City, Kansas
 - coordinates39°03′36″N 98°46′04″W / 39.06000°N 98.76778°W / 39.06000; -98.76778Coordinates: 39°03′36″N 98°46′04″W / 39.06000°N 98.76778°W / 39.06000; -98.76778[1]
 - elevation1,040 ft (320 m)
Length575 mi (925 km)
Basin size19,260 sq mi (49,900 km2)
 - locationUSGS 06877600 at Enterprise, KS[3]
 - average1,540 cu ft/s (44 m3/s)
 - minimum38 cu ft/s (1.1 m3/s)
 - maximum207,000 cu ft/s (5,900 m3/s)
Basin features
 - leftNorth Fork Smoky Hill River, Big Creek,
Saline River, Solomon River
 - rightLadder Creek
WatershedsSmoky Hill-Kansas-Missouri-Mississippi


The river gets its name from the Smoky Hills area in the Great Plains.[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Smoky Hill River
  2. 2.0 2.1 Root, George A. (February 1935). "Ferries in Kansas, Part VI -- Smoky Hill River". Kansas Historical Quarterly. 4 (1): 3–22.
  3. "Water resources data for the United States, Water Year 2009; gage 06877600, Smoky Hill River at Enterprise, KS" (PDF). USGS. Retrieved 1 August 2010.
  4. "National Hydrography Dataset". National Hydrography Dataset. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  5. Smoky Hill River. (2009). In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved July 22, 2009, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online: