U.S. Department of the Interior


Date of this Version



Pick-Sloan Missouri Basin Program, 2008


U.S. Government work


1. Setting

The North Loup Division (Division) is located in east-central Nebraska. Project lands (Figure 1, “North Loup Division, Nebraska, General Map”) are within the drainage basins of the North Loup and Loup Rivers. They extend southeast from near the northwest corner of Valley County through the upland valley of Turtle, Dane, and Mira Creeks and along the North Loup and Loup Rivers from Ord to Fullerton, Nebraska. The irrigable lands are located in Valley, Greeley, Howard, Nance, and Merrick Counties. Diversion facilities are located on the Calamus River in Garfield and Loup Counties and on the North Loup River in Loup County.

The North Loup Division is a multipurpose project supporting irrigation, recreation, and fish and wildlife. Virginia Smith Dam (formerly Calamus Dam) and Calamus Reservoir store and divert water from the Calamus River. The Kent Diversion Works diverts water from the North Loup River into the system for direct use or for storage in Davis Creek Reservoir. Davis Creek Dam and Reservoir, located on a tributary of Davis Creek in Valley County, serves as a storage and regulating feature. Irrigation diversions and releases to five principal open ditch canals; one major pumping plant and one smaller pumping plant; and several open ditch and pipe laterals supply water to approximately 54,900 acres of irrigable land.

Incorporated municipalities within the project area are: Burwell in Garfield County; Fullerton in Nance County; Cushing, Elba and Cotesfield in Howard County; Scotia in Greeley County; and North Loup and Ord in Valley County.

2. Water Appropriations

The water sources for the North Loup Division are the Calamus and North Loup Rivers. The project was planned and constructed to conform with the applicable rules and regulations for water appropriation mandated by the State of Nebraska, Department of Natural Resources. The Twin Loups Reclamation District is the holder of the storage1 and natural flow2 water appropriations for the North Loup Division.