The Oldman River is a
river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases, a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course without reaching another body of wate ...

in southern Alberta, Canada. It flows roughly west to east from the Rocky Mountains, through the communities of Fort Macleod, Lethbridge, and on to Grassy Lake, where it joins Bow River to form the South Saskatchewan River, which eventually drains into the Hudson Bay. Oldman River has a total length of and a drainage area of .


The Oldman River was, at one time, known as the Belly River. The Belly River is now a separate river that is a tributary of the Oldman. In 1991, the Alberta government finished construction of the Oldman River Dam. The Piikani Nation, Piikani renegade, led by Milton Born With A Tooth, had attempted to divert the Oldman River away from the Lethbridge Northern Irrigation District canal intake, leading to an armed standoff. The dam was constructed where the Oldman, Crowsnest, and Castle river systems converge. The ''Peigan Timber Limit B'' and ''Peigan 147'' Indian reserves of the Piikani Nation.

2013 floods

On June 21, 2013, during the 2013 Alberta floods Alberta experienced heavy rainfall that triggered catastrophic flooding throughout much of the southern half of the province along the Bow River, Bow, Elbow River, Elbow, Highwood River, Highwood and Oldman rivers and tributaries. A dozen municipalities in Southern Alberta declared local states of emergency on June 21 as water levels rose and numerous communities were placed under evacuation orders.


Oldman River in Alberta
From headwaters to mouth, Oldman River receives: *Livingstone River *Crowsnest River *Castle River (Alberta), Castle River *Pincher Creek *Beaver Creek *Willow Creek *Belly River **Waterton Lake, Waterton River *St. Mary River (Montana-Alberta), St. Mary River **Lee Creek *Little Bow River


Oldman River originates in the ''Beehive Natural Area'', an area of alpine tundra and old-growth spruce and fir forests. Downstream it flows through ''Bob Creek Wildland Park'' and ''Black Creek Heritage Rangeland''. ''Oldman Dam'' and ''Oldman River'' are other Provincial Recreation Areas established along the river. The river and some of its tributaries have formed coulees in Southern Alberta, and the strata revealed by these formations guide local prospectors to ammolite deposits.


The Oldman River contains fish species such as rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, bull trout, brown trout, hybrid trout species ("cutbow" rainbow and cutthroat cross), mountain whitefish, Esox, pike, walleye, lake sturgeon, catostomidae, goldeye, and Cyprinidae, minnows.

See also

*Oldman River valley parks system *List of rivers of Alberta


External links

* Oldman Watershed Council
{{authority control Rivers of Alberta Saskatchewan River Rivers of the Canadian Rockies Tributaries of Hudson Bay