The Pomme de Terre watershed narrows as the river flows south through cropland and pasture land, with very few lakes or wetlands in this section. Once the river reaches Appleton it flows west and empties into Marsh Lake, an impoundment of the Minnesota River. A portion of this sub-watershed flows through Swift County where it is well protected by forested riparian areas and deep narrow valleys. This section of the river contains impairments such as E. coli, turbidity, and low fish and macroinvertebrate diversity. These impairments are likely caused by altered hydrology, limited habitat, and elevated nitrate levels, according to the PdT Stressor ID report.
The lower section of the Pomme de Terre River was listed as impaired for dissolved oxygen until 2006, as a result of the Appleton Mill Dam removal in 1999. The dam removal on this section immediately improved oxygen levels, restored connection to the Minnesota River, and improved fish habitat.
From Swift County Road 20 to Appleton, the Pomme de Terre River is a State Water Trail with designated carry-in accesses to the river. Check the DNR State Water Trail page for more information, safety tips, and detailed maps.
A USGS Gage near Appleton, MN measures river height and cfs (cubic feet per second).