Water Quality Monitoring

What is James River Watch?

James River Watch is a river conditions map that communicates bacteria levels and other river conditions to the public. During the summer, weekly swimming, and paddling conditions are made available at www.jamesriverwatch.org, so before you head down to the banks of the James and take the plunge, remember that it pays to know before you go!

Why Monitor Bacteria?

While the James River is a great place to cool off, it can carry extra pollutants during periods of high water and after heavy summer downpours. Some segments of the river are impaired due to excessive harmful bacteria—which can make an afternoon on the river less enjoyable. James River Watch was designed to report bacteria levels and communicate them to the public, so you can have a better time on the water!

James River Watch website

Want to learn more about James River Watch?

Volunteers help us track the health of the James by collecting water samples every Thursday between Memorial Day and Labor Day. No monitoring or science background is required. We will assign volunteers to sampling teams, and work with each volunteer to help establish a sampling schedule that fits individual schedules and availability.


Upper James Water Quality Training Session

Apr 29, 2021 5:30 PM

Register if your preference is to volunteer at

Buchanan Public Boat Landing
Maury River at Ben Salem Wayside
Riveredge Park in Lynchburg
Scottsville Public Boat Landing
New Canton Public Boat Ramp
Farmville Main Street Bridge
Tucker Park at Maidens Crossing
Robious Landing Park
Harvell Dam Petersburg

Middle James Water Quality Training Session

May 4 2021 5:30 PM

Register if your preference is to volunteer at

 City Point at Hopewell
Osborne Landing
Grapevine Bridge
Rockett’s Landing
14th Street Takeout
Rope swing at Tredegar Beach
Reedy Creek
42nd St Access
Pony Pasture
Huguenot Flatwater

Lower James Water Quality Training Session

April 27, 2021 5:30 PM

Register if your preference is to volunteer at

 Chickahominy Riverfront Park
Jamestown Beach
Powhatan Creek
College Creek Beach
College Landing Park

Sampling Locations:

  • Hampton River, Hampton
  • Riverside Park, Newport News
  • Denbigh Park, Warwick River, Newport News
  • Jamestown Beach, James City County
  • Powhatan Creek Park, James City County
  • College Creek Beach, Williamsburg
  • College Landing Park, WIlliamsburg
  • City Point, Hopewell
  • Harvell Dam, Petersburg
  • Osborne Landing, Henrico County
  • Grapevine Bridge – Chickahominy River, Sandston
  • Pony Pasture, Richmond
  • Huguenot Flatwater, Richmond
  • Robious Landing, Chesterfield County
  • Rockett’s Landing, Richmond
  • 14th Street Access Point, Richmond
  • Rope Swing beach at Tredegar, Richmond
  • Reedy Creek, Richmond
  • 42nd Street JRPS Access, Richmond
  • Tucker Park at Maidens Crossing, Goochland County
  • Public boat ramp, Scottsville
  • Public Boat Ramp, New Canton
  • Riveredge Park, Madison Heights
  • Ben Salem Wayside Park, Lexington (Maury River)
  • DGIF Public landing, Buchanan
  • Riverview Park, Charlottesville (Rivanna River)
  • Main Street Bridge, Farmville (Appomattox River)

For more information

For more information contact us at ereilly@thejamesriver.org.

water quality monitors