HydroRIVERS Version 1.0


HydroRIVERS is a databaseĀ aiming to provide the vectorized line network of all global rivers that have a catchment area of at least 10 km2 or an average river flow of 0.1 cubic meters per second, or both.

The global coverage of HydroRIVERS encompasses a total of 8.5 million individual river reaches with an average length of 4.2 km, representing a total of 35.9 million km of rivers globally. Additional attributes for each river reach include estimates of theĀ river reach length, the distance from upstream headwaters or final ocean outlet, river order, and average discharge. Every river reach is also co-registered to the sub-basin of the HydroBASINS database in which it resides (via a shared ID).

Technical documentation

Please consult the HydroRIVERS Technical Documentation for more details on the database.

Data download

The data can be downloaded in 2 different formats (ESRI Geodatabase or Shapefile) and either as a global or regional coverage (see below figure for regional extents). Click on the zip-file link in the following table for download:


Global 590 MBDownload
Africa111 MBDownload
Arctic24 MBDownload
Asia98 MBDownload
Australia56 MBDownload
Europe68 MBDownload
Greenland10 MBDownload
North America69 MBDownload
South America107 MBDownload
Siberia51 MBDownload


Global 520 MBDownload
Africa103 MBDownload
Arctic21 MBDownload
Asia86 MBDownload
Australia47 MBDownload
Europe65 MBDownload
Greenland9 MBDownload
North America63 MBDownload
South America91 MBDownload
Siberia45 MBDownload

It should be noted that the quality of the HydroRIVERS data is significantly lower for regions above 60 degrees northern latitude as there is no underlying SRTM elevation data available and thus a coarser scale DEM has been inserted (HYDRO1k provided by USGS).

Project contact

For more information on this project please contact Dr. Bernhard Lehner