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Home » Lakes of the Atlas » North Saskatchewan Region » Battle River Basin » Driedmeat Lake

Driedmeat 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:83A
Location:Tp44, 45 R19 W4
Lat/Long:52°52'N 112°45'W

Driedmeat Lake is a long, narrow lake that was originally formed above a natural constriction of the Battle River; it is now stabilized by a weir. The lake is located 7 km south of the city of Camrose in the County of Camrose (Fig. 1). Driedmeat Lake is situated in a glacial meltwater channel incised 40 m into the surrounding plain. From the top of the valley, the view of the lake is very attractive; from the lake, the impression is one of being surrounded by rolling, wooded hills.

Before the arrival of the white man, the area near the lake was used by Blackfoot and Cree Indians. The word "driedmeat" comes from the Cree word for drying buffalo meat and making pemmican. The lake took its name from Driedmeat Hill, just east of the centre of the lake (Gould 1939). The hill has recently been disturbed by gravel extraction, but Saskatoon berries, an ingredient of pemmican, still grow luxuriantly in the area. The Cree tended to stay to the east of the Battle River and the Blackfoot to the west; the river provided a natural barrier and was the site of numerous skirmishes, hence the name Battle River.

By 1900, settlers had arrived to farm the rich soil in the area (MacGregor 1972). Roads were hard to maintain, especially in the spring when snowmelt and rain turned the dirt tracks to gumbo. At that time, the lake was an important transportation corridor. About 1903, a 30-foot motorboat powered by a woodburning steam engine provided ferry service along the lake (Edberg Hist. Soc. Book Club 1981).

Access to the lake is available at Tillicum Beach Park, a County of Camrose campground that is open from May to September. The park is located halfway along the eastern shore (Fig. 2). The facilities available include 31 random campsites, a boat launch, a beach, tap water, flush toilets, a picnic shelter, food service, ball diamonds and a playground; in winter, a skating rink is maintained. The only commercial resort on the lake and a few cottages are located just north of Tillicum Beach. Another access point, where canoes and small boats can be launched, is located at the south end of the lake where Highway 56 crosses the Battle River near the weir (Fig. 2).

Aquatic vegetation, which grows luxuriantly at both ends of Driedmeat Lake, provides excellent waterfowl habitat but inhibits boat traffic. Recreational activities enjoyed at the lake include fishing, swimming, canoeing, power boating and wildlife viewing. There are no boating restrictions specific to Driedmeat Lake, but general federal regulations apply (Alta. For. Ld. Wild. 1988). Provincial sport fishing regulations apply and angling is not permitted within 25 m of the weir at the south end of the lake (Alta. For. Ld. Wild. 1989). The lake is rich in nutrients and supports dense algal blooms during most of the summer.

Physical Information
Area (km2)16.5
Max. Depth (m)3.7
Mean Depth (m)2.2
Dr. Basin Area (km2)7220
Dam, WeirDam
Drainage BasinBattle River Basin

Recreational Information
Camp GroundPresent
Boat LaunchPresent
Sport FishNorthern Pike

Water Quality Information
Trophic StatusHyper-Eutrophic
TP x (µg/L)453
CHLORO x (µg/L)87
TDS x (mg/L)363

2.Drainage Basin Characteristics »

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