Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Cape Fear River
The Cape Fear River is a 202 mi (325 km) long river in east central North Carolina in the United States. The longest river entirely within North Carolina, it flows into the Atlantic Ocean near Cape Fear, from which it takes its name.
It is formed at Haywood, near the county line between Lee and Chatham counties, by the confluence of the Deep and Haw rivers just below Jordan Lake. It flows southeast past Lillington, Fayetteville, and Elizabethtown, then receives the Black River approximately 10 mi (16 km) northwest of Wilmington. At Wilmington, it receives the Northeast Cape Fear River and turns south, widening as an estuary and entering the Atlantic approximately 3 mi (5 km) west of Cape Fear.
During the colonial era, the river provided a principal transportation route to the interior of North Carolina. Today the river is navigable as far as Fayetteville through a series of locks and dams. The estuary of the river furnishes a segment of the route of the Intercoastal Waterway.
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