Watersheds 101

A watershed (or a catchment area) is defined as an area of land, large or small, where all of the rain that falls on, through it (underground) or drains off of it, flows to the same place such as a creek. Based on the creeks within our urban area, the City of North Vancouver is divided into four main watersheds, with each one flowing into a specific creek or directly into the Burrard Inlet.

Common Watershed Challenges

Everything that happens in the watershed affects everything downstream, including our creeks and the health of Burrard Inlet. Some of the biggest issues affecting our watersheds include:

  • Development and urbanization
  • High levels of hard (impermeable) surfaces
  • Development very close to creek banks
  • Water quality issues from stormwater discharge, spills, and non-point source pollution
  • Loss of Burrard Inlet estuaries
  • Highly engineered and channelized creeks
  • Risk of increased peak flows and reduced base flow due to increasing development
  • Degraded fish and river habitats

Where Does The Water Go?

Choices at home make for healthy waters. In our rainy city, anything dumped outside enters our storm drains, flowing to our creeks and ocean, harming fish, birds and humans.

Help us keep pollutants out of the stormwater!

Where Does The Water Go


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Watersheds & Catchments in the City

There are four watersheds and one catchment area in the City. View map of all watersheds and catchment areas.

From west to east they are:

Mackay Creek

Mosquito Creek

Wagg Creek

Lynn Creek

Lower Lonsdale Creek Catchment Area

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