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Home » Lakes of the Atlas » Beaver River Region » Beaver River Basin » Garner Lake

Garner Lake

    1.Introduction
    2.Drainage Basin Characteristics
    3.Lake Basin Characteristics
    4.Water Quality
    5.Biological Characteristics
    6.References
    7.Appendix

1. Introduction

Map Sheets:73L/4
Location:Tp60 R12 W4
Lat/Long:54°12'N 111°32'W

Garner Lake is a popular recreational lake located in the counties of Smoky Lake and St. Paul. It is situated 175 km northeast of the city of Edmonton and 5 km north of the hamlet of Spedden. To travel to the lake from Edmonton, take Highway 28 to Spedden, then a paved secondary road north from Spedden to Garner Lake Provincial Park (Fig. 1). A well-oiled gravel road extends north from the park and follows the western shore of the lake, and another gravel road extends east from the park entrance and follows the southeastern shore. The eastern bay can be reached by a gravel road that is connected to Secondary Road 866.

The lake was named for George C. Garner who began homesteading on a parcel of land in 1904 about 2 km to the east. Before the arrival of the Garner family, the lake had been named Hollow Lake by local Indians (Alta. Rec. Parks n.d.).

The first settlers arrived in the area during the early 1900s. The hamlet of Spedden was established around 1912. By 1920, the Canadian National Railway arrived and a railroad station was built at Spedden. Most of the area that is now the provincial park (Fig. 2) was reserved for public recreation by the Alberta government in 1927, but road access from Spedden to the park reserve was not completed until 1949. In 1953, the reserve became Garner Lake Provincial Park (Alta. Mun. Aff. 1982[a]). The park offers 66 campsites, 2 picnic shelters, cold-water showers, sewage dumping facilities, 3 playgrounds, 2 change houses, tap water, picnic areas, a hand boat launch, a boat launch for trailers and a swimming area. Several walking trails are available and one leads to a viewpoint.

The sport fishery at Garner Lake is one of the most popular in the area, and fishing for walleye, northern pike and yellow perch is the preferred recreational activity of lake users. No commercial or domestic fishing is allowed. There are no sport fishing regulations specific to Garner Lake, but provincial limits and regulations apply (Alta. For. Ld. Wild. 1989). Other favourite activities on and around the lake include swimming, sightseeing, general relaxation, water skiing, power boating, rowing, canoeing, snowmobiling, skating and cross-country skiing (Barber 1978). There are no boating restrictions over most of the lake, but in posted areas such as designated swimming areas, all boats are prohibited. In other posted areas, power boats are restricted to a maximum speed of 12 km/hour (Alta. For. Ld. Wild. 1988).

The water in Garner Lake is clear for much of the summer, and although it turns green during the warmest months, it remains quite transparent. Aquatic vegetation is abundant, and mats of filamentous algae float to the surface in most years.

Physical Information
Area (km2)6.19
Max. Depth (m)15.2
Mean Depth (m)8.1
Dr. Basin Area (km2)25.5
Dam, WeirNone
Drainage BasinBeaver River Basin

Recreational Information
Camp GroundPresent
Boat LaunchPresent
Sport FishNorthern Pike, Walleye, Yellow Perch

Water Quality Information
Trophic StatusMesotrophic
TP x (µg/L)42
CHLORO x (µg/L)11.0
TDS x (mg/L)575

2.Drainage Basin Characteristics »

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