Milk River Ridge Reservoir
Constructed in 1956 by the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration, the Milk River Ridge Reservoir (MRRR) is an artificial oligotrophic waterbody with storage capacity of 86,437 acre-feet (127,297 Dam3) occupying 15.3 km2 in land area, with a basin area of 168 km2. The reservoir is owned by the Alberta Government and is managed by Alberta Environment and Parks since 1974. The reservoir is within the South Saskatchewan River Basin and is a water source for the communities of Raymond, Warner, New Dayton, Craddock, Wrentham, and Stirling.
The reservoir is supplied water from St. Mary, Belly and Waterton rivers to the St. Mary Reservoir which flows to Jensen Reservoir and into the reservoir via the Waterton-St. Mary Headworks main canal system which is 22km long and consists of two reaches, from Jensen Reservoir to Taylor’s Coulee Chute and the Taylor’s Coulee Chute to the MRRR (21 km). Water from the canal enters the reservoir from the west end and flows through the current wetland. The reservoir was created by the construction of the North Ridge Dam, and the East Ridge Dam. About 98% of the water flows out of the reservoir through the North Ridge Dam to Cross Coulee reservoir, to Raymond Reservoir, and through irrigation canals to the Medicine Hat area.
The reservoir features the Ridge Park Municipal Recreation Area, and East Bay day-use area and rustic camping. The reservoir and adjacent natural area provide substantial economic and social benefits to the region.