Pembina River Natural Area

Located about 30 km northwest of Onoway, this Natural Area has two portions. The northern part is adjacent to the Pembina River and the southern part is north of the western arm of Majeau Lake.

Pembina River NA Site Map (Government of Alberta)
Pembina River NA Site Map (Government of Alberta)

Map of the Area

Any maps and map views are for general information only. Do not rely on them for navigation or to determine legal boundaries.

Other Information

The north portion of this site is a narrow stretch of land along a bank of the Pembina River. The banks are steep and actively eroding. Vegetation is primarily dense shrub, second-growth aspen and sedge wetland. The south portion has dense second-growth aspen. The south portion adjoins Majeau Lake Natural Area‘s PNT portion. The intervening land between the north and southern portions is privately owned [1].

A Berry Nice River. Pembina River’s name was first recorded in 1810 by David Thompson and was thought to be a version of the Cree name meaning ‘summer berry’ [2]. It derives from the Canadian French ‘pembine’, in turn from the Cree ni-pimina-na, with the ‘min’ part meaning ‘berry’. It refers to the highbush cranberry shrub, Viburnum opulus var. americanum [3].

The river originates at Pembina Forks, about 65 km south of Edson. It flows easterly and northerly for 547 km before it merges with the Athabasca River 64 km west of the town of Athabasca [4].

Site Statistics

Site NamePembina River
Site TypeNatural Area
SubtypeOrder-in-council (OC)
Natural Region(s)Dry Mixedwood
O.C. No. (Land Ref. Manual)454/71
PASite ID (Map Ref #)386
Site # (Parks Website)560
Total Area75.45 ha. (186.44 ac.)
Recreation Activitiesnone noted
Operated ByParks Division
Notes and Comments
Statistics and Details for Pembina River Natural Area


The following links are provided as a courtesy but are not verified or endorsed by SAPAA. Clicking on the link will cause you to leave the SAPAA website. Primary source of information is: Information & Facilities – Pembina River Natural Area | Alberta Parks (All links accessed on 2023-02-19).

  1. Lac Ste. Anne County, Map 2021.
  2. Aubrey, Merrily K., ed. Concise Place Names of Alberta. Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 2006, p. 249.
  4. Wikipedia, Pembina River.

Further Reading

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