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Battle River
North Saskatchewan basin map.png
North Saskatchewan River drainage basin
Country Canada
Provinces Alberta, Saskatchewan
Physical characteristics
Main source Battle Lake
849 m (2,785 ft)
52°56′57″N 114°08′41″W / 52.94917°N 114.14472°W / 52.94917; -114.14472
River mouth North Saskatchewan River
Battleford, Saskatchewan
463 m (1,519 ft)
52°42′42″N 108°15′13″W / 52.71167°N 108.25361°W / 52.71167; -108.25361
Length 570 km (350 mi)
Basin features
Basin size 30,300 km2 (11,700 sq mi)

Battle River is a river in central Alberta and western Saskatchewan. It is a major tributary of the North Saskatchewan River.

The Battle River flows for 570 kilometres (350 mi) and has a total drainage area of 30,300 square kilometres (11,700 sq mi). The mean discharge is 10 m³/s at its mouth.


The river did not gain its current name until relatively recently. When Anthony Henday passed through the region in the 1750s, he did not mention a river with this name. But by 1793 Peter Fidler mentions arriving at the "Battle or Fighting River", likely so named because of the beginning of a period of rivalry between the Iron Confederacy (Cree and Assiniboine) and the Blackfoot Confederacy.


Fabyan Trestle Bridge over the Battle River Valley near Wainwright

The headwaters of Battle River is Battle Lake in west-central Alberta, east of Winfield. The river meanders through Alberta eastward into Saskatchewan, where it discharges into the North Saskatchewan River at Battleford. Over its course, the river flows through Ponoka and by Hardisty and Fabyan within Alberta. Big Knife Provincial Park is situated on the south bank of the river west of Highway 855, approximately 15 km (9.3 mi) southwest of Forestburg. The Fabyan Trestle Bridge crosses the river.


  • Sunny Creek
  • Wolf Creek
  • Pigeon Lake Creek
  • Stoney Creek
  • Pipestone Creek
  • Driedmeat Creek
  • Meeting Creek
  • Paintearth Creek
  • Castor Creek
  • Iron Creek
  • Ribstone Creek

Battle Lake, Samson Lake, Driedmeat Lake and Big Knife Lake are formed along the river, and numerous other lakes (such as Pigeon Lake, Coal Lake, Bittern Lake, Vernon Lake, Ernest Lake, Soda Lake) lie in the Battle River hydrographic basin.

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