Clearwater River Dene Nation

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Clearwater River Dene Nation
Location of CRDN on NASA image of Lac La Loche
Location of CRDN on NASA image of Lac La Loche
Clearwater River Dene Nation is located in Saskatchewan
Clearwater River Dene Nation
Clearwater River Dene Nation
Village of Clearwater River in Saskatchewan
Coordinates: 56°31′49″N 109°29′47″W / 56.53028°N 109.49639°W / 56.53028; -109.49639
Country Canada
Province Saskatchewan
 • Chief Teddy Clark
 • MLA Athabasca Buckley Belanger
 • MP Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River Rob Clarke
 • Total 30.50 km2 (11.78 sq mi)
Population (2011)[1]
 • Total 778
 • Metro density 25.5/km2 (66/sq mi)
Time zone Central Standard Time (UTC−6)
Postal code S0M 3H0
Area code(s) 306
Highways Hwy 955

The Clearwater River Dene Nation is a Dene First Nations band government in the boreal forest area of northern Saskatchewan, Canada. It maintains offices in the village of Clearwater River situated on the eastern shore of Lac La Loche. The Clearwater River Dene Nation reserve of Clearwater River shares its southern border with the village of La Loche.[4]


Members receiving Treaty 8 payments at Portage La Loche (West La Loche). The HBC residence is in the background (1911)

Whitefish Lake, now called Garson Lake, was already an old established Dene village of 50 people in 1880. On August 4, 1899 the residents were gathered in Fort McMurray and selected Adam Boucher as headman to represent them in the signing of Treaty 8.[5]

The descendants of this group from Garson Lake became known as the Portage La Loche Band. At the La Loche Mission in 1907 these families asked that treaty payments be made to them at La Loche or Buffalo River so they wouldn't have to travel all the way to Fort McMurray.[5] On July 17, 1911 they received their treaty payments at Portage La Loche (West La Loche).[5] In 1920 the Portage La Loche Band (now known as the Clearwater River Dene Nation) had 66 members.

Land transfers

Clearwater River Dene Nation band office with the school in the background
CRDN community hall on Lac La Loche

In 1970 three parcels of land were transferred to the Portage La Loche Band (IR 221, IR 222, IR 223).[5] For a time the "La Loche Landing" (IR 223) was being developed as a village and in 1974 it had 70 residents, however most of the band members chose to live in the village of La Loche. The band had about 280 members living in La Loche and the La Loche Landing in 1975.

In 1979 the parcel at Palmbere Lake/Linval Lake (IR 222) area was traded for land bordering La Loche to the north.[6] This area also referred to as IR 222 is now home to the village of Clearwater River. The third parcel (IR 221) is on the south west shore of Lac La Loche. It had a few houses in the 1970s. In 1820 the trading posts of the Hudson's Bay Company and the North West Company were located on the lake in that area.

The village of Clearwater River has grown rapidly since 1979 when it was first officially created. The population increased from 301 in 1986 to 778 in 2011. Some of this increase was from members living in La Loche who relocated to Clearwater River as housing became available.[7]


As of June, 2016 there were 2040 registered members with 844 members living on-reserve or on crown land and 1196 members living off-reserve.[8] CRDN is a member of the Meadow Lake Tribal Council.[9] and the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN)[1]

In the 2006 Canada Census there were 590 registered members of the Clearwater River Dene Nation and other First Nations living in La Loche.[10] In 2011 there were 680 registered members.[11]


Village statistics

Historical populations
Year Pop. ±%
1986 301 —    
1991 455 +51.2%
1996 548 +20.4%
2001 584 +6.6%
2006 658 +12.7%
2011 778 +18.2%
Canada census – Clearwater River Dene Nation community profile
2011 2006
Population: 778 (+18.2% from 2006) 658 (+12.7% from 2001)
Land area: 30.50 km2 (11.78 sq mi) 30.50 km2 (11.78 sq mi)
Population density: 25.5/km2 (66/sq mi) 21.6/km2 (56/sq mi)
Median age: 22.0 (M: 21.2, F: 23.3) 21.2 (M: 21.3, F: 21.0)
Total private dwellings: 199 152
Median household income:
References: 2011[15] 2006[16] earlier[17]


Clearwater River Dene School offers a kindergarten to Grade 12 program. The students take part in the Dene immersion program offered at the school.

Clearwater River Dene School (Home of the Kodiaks)
Clearwater Beach on Lac La Loche within the Clearwater River Dene Nation Cultural Grounds. A pall of smoke from nearby forest fires obscures the sky.

See also


  1. ^ "2011 Community Profiles". Statistics Canada. Government of Canada. Retrieved May 29, 2012. 
  2. ^ Government of Saskatchewan, MRD Home. "Municipal Directory System". Archived from the original on 2016-01-15. Retrieved 2009-09-06. 
  3. ^ Commissioner of Canada Elections, Chief Electoral Officer of Canada (2005). "Elections Canada On-line". Archived from the original on 2007-04-21. Retrieved 2009-09-06. 
  4. ^ "AANDC (Clearwater River Dene Nation)". Archived from the original on 2013-10-14. Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  5. ^ a b c d "History of La Loche (CRDN)". Retrieved 2012-10-10. 
  6. ^ "Star-Phoenix (Saskatoon newspaper)". 1979-10-27. Retrieved 2012-10-10. 
  7. ^ a b "Saskatchewan Census Population (Indian Reserves)" (PDF). Retrieved 12 July 2015. 
  8. ^ "AANDC (Registered Population)". Retrieved 2013-03-15. 
  9. ^ "Meadow Lake Tribal Council (MLTC)". Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  10. ^ "2006 Aboriginal Population Profile (La Loche)". Retrieved 2014-05-11. 
  11. ^ "2011 Aboriginal Population Profile (La Loche)". Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  12. ^ "Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Geographical Names (Clearwater River)". Retrieved 2015-02-04. 
  13. ^ "Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Geographical Names (Clearwater River Dene Band 221)". Retrieved 2015-03-14. 
  14. ^ "Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Geographical Names (Clearwater River Dene Band 223)". Retrieved 2015-03-14. 
  15. ^ "2011 Community Profiles". Canada 2011 Census. Statistics Canada. July 5, 2013. Retrieved 2012-05-30. 
  16. ^ "2006 Community Profiles". Canada 2006 Census. Statistics Canada. March 30, 2011. Retrieved 2012-05-30. 
  17. ^ "2001 Community Profiles". Canada 2001 Census. Statistics Canada. February 17, 2012. 

External links

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