Written by Al Agnew- Three forks form the headwaters of Black River. The West Fork, largest of the three, and the Middle Fork, second largest, both begin along the dividing ridge that separates the Black River watershed from the Meramec-Huzzah-Big River drainage, and both drain a large expanse of rugged, maze-like hollows, heavily wooded and formed in dolomitic limestone with abundant chert gravel. As a result, the two forks flow through vast gravel deposits and are almost always extremely clear, perhaps the clearest streams in the Ozarks. The West Fork is large enough to be floatable from about the town of Centerville, though it has been floated farther upstream in high water levels. The Middle Fork is less floatable but is often floated from the Highway 21-72 bridge.