The Catawba River and the Wateree River are essentially one river that begins in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina and flows through the Charlotte metropolitan area into Lake Wateree in South Carolina. The name of the river changes to the Wateree River in Lake Wateree and eventually joins with the Congaree River in Lake Marion.

Most of the Catawba River is dammed. There are eleven major lakes in the basin and numerous smaller lakes. The 14 major dams and many smaller dams that form these lakes have a major impact on the flow of the river.

  • Lake James
  • Lake Rhodhiss
  • Lake Hickory
  • Lookout Shoals
  • Lake Norman
  • Mountain Island Lake
  • Lake Wylie
  • Fishing Creek Lake
  • Great Falls Lake
  • Rocky Creek Lake
  • Lake Wateree