This report describes selected environmental- setting features for 11 fixed surface-water sites in the Western Lake Michigan Drainages study unit of the National Water-Quality Assessment Pro- gram. The study unit, which includes 10 major river systems draining to Lake Michigan, is bounded on the south by the Illinois State line and extends north to about 31 miles north of Escanaba, Mich. The fixed sites are on the following streams: Peshekee River, Popple River, Menominee River, Pensaukee River, Duck Creek, Tomorrow River, East River, Fox River, North Branch Milwaukee River, Lincoln Creek, and Milwaukee River. Drainage basins above these sites receive runoff from land uses and land covers, bedrock types, and surficial deposits representative of the main types of each of these characteristics in the study unit. Data types collected at the fixed sites include water chemistry; organic compounds and trace elements in streambed sediment and biological tissues; algal, benthic-invertebrate, and fish communities; and aquatic habitat. Field measurements include water temperature, pH, specific conductance, alkalinity, and dissolved oxygen. Results of water- quality field measurements indicate little variation in temperature among the fixed sites. Specific conductance and alkalinity were generally higher at sites underlain by carbonate bedrock than at sites underlain by igneous/metamorphic bedrock. Differences in pH among the fixed sites were less than those for specific conductance and alkalinity, but pH seemed to increase slightly from north to south. Dissolved-oxygen concentration varied more at agricultural sites than at forested and urban sites, perhaps because of higher nutrient inputs at agricultural sites. The information included in this report has been assembled as reference material for ongoing studies at the fixed sites.