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Stroubles Creek
Stroubles Creek 1.jpg
Stroubles Creek just upstream of the Virginia Tech Duck Pond
Country United States
City Blacksburg, Virginia
Physical characteristics
River mouth New River
1,700 feet (520 m)
37°11′25″N 80°31′39″W / 37.1903°N 80.5275°W / 37.1903; -80.5275
Length 12 miles (19 km)
Basin features
Basin size 22.4 square miles (58 km2)
Landmarks Virginia Tech
  • Left:
    Slate Branch
  • Right:
    Walls Branch
Waterbodies Virginia Tech Duck Pond

Stroubles Creek is an approximately 12-mile-long (19 km) stream that runs through the town of Blacksburg, the Virginia Tech campus, and Montgomery County, Virginia until it empties into the New River. Most of the sections of Stroubles Creek that flow through Blacksburg and the Virginia Tech campus are piped underground, while the portion that flows through Montgomery County is above-ground. Stroubles Creek has been designated an impaired waterway since 2002.

Physical characteristics


Duckpond Virginia Tech
The Virginia Tech Duck Pond is formed by a dammed section of Stroubles Creek.

Stroubles Creek flows into the New River, which then flows into the Kanawha River, the Ohio River, the Mississippi River, and finally the Gulf of Mexico. There are two branches that merge at the Virginia Tech Duck Pond: the Main Branch and the Webb Branch. Downstream of the Duck Pond, many tributary streams flow into Stroubles Creek, including Slate Branch and Walls Branch.


The Stroubles Creek watershed, a subwatershed of the New River watershed, is 22.4 square miles (58 km2). The Stroubles Creek watershed is further divided into an upper and a lower watershed, with the Virginia Tech Duck Pond acting as a divider between the two. The Upper Stroubles Creek watershed is approximately 3 square miles (7.8 km2), and it is heavily impacted by urbanization in Blacksburg and on the Virginia Tech campus. The Lower Stroubles Creek watershed includes some urbanized areas on the western side of the Virginia Tech campus, but then it flows mostly through rural lands until it reaches the New River. The watershed is located in karst terrain, with limestone formations, sinkholes, and natural springs. The stream bed is made up of cobbles and pebbles with alluvia-floodplain deposits (stratified unconsolidated silt, clay, and sand with lenses).


European settlers first moved into the Stroubles Creek area in the 1740s. It acted as a water source for the settlers, although today the New River is used as the water source for the area. In 1798, the town of Blacksburg was founded in the upper Stroubles Creek watershed. In 1851, the Preston and Olin Institute was opened, which would later become Virginia Tech. In 1937, Virginia Tech's Drillfield was constructed, which resulted in the main branch of Stroubles Creek being culverted underground. The Virginia Tech Duck Pond was also created at this time when a dam was constructed where the two branches merged.

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