USGS - science for a changing world
Logo and link to
The National Map

Hydrography

This is a formatting graphic.

Links to Data Products and Map Services

The NHDPlus High Resolution (NHDPlus HR), National Hydrography Dataset (NHD), and Watershed Boundary Dataset (WBD) are available for download and as map services. All NHDPlus HR downloads contain a copy of the NHD and WBD datasets used to create the the NHDPlus HR. The copies are current only to the date the NHDPlus HR was created. All NHD downloads contain a copy of the corresponding WBD dataset that is current only to the date the NHD dataset was created.

Department of the Interior (DOI) users may experience faster download times when using the “DOI users” link.

Downloads

The National Map Download Viewer

The National Map Download viewer provides an online mapping tool for downloading the NHDPlus HR, NHD and WBD as a shapefile or file geodatabase by Hydrologic Unit (HU), including Subregion (HU4) or Subbasin (HU8), by state, or nationally. A Download Manager application also is available for conveniently managing downloads of multiple datasets.

NHDPlus High Resolution (NHDPlus HR) Direct Download Links

Please note: The NHDPlus High Resolution is being released for download in Beta version (NHDPlus HR Beta) by Subregion (HU4) as it is built. Please see the NHDPlus High Resolution (NHDPlus HR) page for more information about this building process, to find out the current availability by Hydrologic Region, and to learn about participating in reviews of the Beta version data.

The NHDPlus HR data includes both vector and raster components for each geographic area mapped. NHDPlus HR Beta vector data is available in file geodatabase (GDB) format, zipped (.zip) to reduce the file size. NHDPlus HR raster data files are available for download as zipped (.7z) files.

National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) Direct Download Links

The NHD High Resolution can be directly downloaded in shapefile or file geodatabase (GDB) format by Hydrologic Unit (HU), state, or the entire nation. Also, an extract containing only streamgages and dams is available.

Watershed Boundary Dataset (WBD) Direct Download Links

The WBD can be directly downloaded in shapefile or file geodatabase format by Hydrologic Unit - Region (HU2) - or as a file geodatabase for the entire nation.

Map Services

Hydrography web-based map services are available from The National Map Service Endpoints page as cached and dynamic services.

*On occasion, maintenance will be performed on these map services causing limited access. Contact nhd@usgs.gov if you encounter service-related issues or need assistance with these services.*

Full Name Service Name Category Type Data Scale Update
Hydrography - Cached (Tiled) USGSHydroCached Base Maps and/or Overlay Raster Tile Cache NHD High Resolution Down to 9K (Level 17 in Google map tiles) Annual
National Hydrography Dataset NHD Theme Overlays Dynamic NHD High Resolution 1:288K and larger Quarterly
Watershed Boundary Dataset WBD Theme Overlays Dynamic WBD 1:18M and larger Quarterly

Which service should I use?

  • Hydrography - Cached (Tiled): This nationwide cached overlay uses a variety of hydrography layers and depicts them in standard USGS Topographic Map symbology. It is updated and re-cached once yearly. It is useful for adding hydrography over other map layers down to 1:9,000 scale. It draws more quickly and is more reliable than the dynamic layers, but is updated less frequently and does not provide access to attributes nor the ability to change the style in other applications. This service is also available as a WMTS.
  • National Hydrography Dataset (NHD): This nationwide dynamic service displays the NHD High Resolution at scales from 1:288K and below. NHD symbology is used and it includes all symbols, for example, flow direction and connectors are shown at large scales. It draws more slowly than the tile cached service, but the data is updated quarterly and it supports access to attributes and dynamic styling (the ability to change the style representation in ESRI clients). This service is also available as a OGC Web Map Service (WMS).
  • Watersheds (WBD): This nationwide dynamic service displays the WBD at scales from 1:18M and below. It provides ability to either show all WBD levels at all scale ranges or the most appropriate HUC level at a given scale (default setting). The data is updated quarterly and it supports access to attributes and dynamic styling (the ability to change the style representation in ESRI clients). This map service is also available as a OGC Web Map Service (WMS) and a Web Feature Service (WFS).

Some of the files on this page are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Acrobat Reader, free of charge.

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

USAGov: Government Made Easy U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
URL: http://nhd.usgs.gov/data.html
Questions or Assistance: Contact USGS
Last modified: Tuesday, 09-May-2017 11:21:39 EDT