The Dobson River is a river in the South Island of New Zealand. It flows south between the Neumann and Ohau ranges for 45 kilometres from its source to the east of Mount Hopkins, in the Southern Alps, before joining with the Hopkins River, close to the latter's entry into the northern end of Lake Ohau in the Mackenzie Country. The river flows over wide shingle beds, and has no rapids of interest to whitewater enthusiasts. It was named by Julius von Haast in the 1860s for his father-in-law, Edward Dobson, who was the Canterbury Provincial Engineer.
The New Zealand Department of Conservation maintains a tramping track and several backcountry huts in the river valley. Two of the huts are accessible by 4WD vehicle.
There is no direct geographical link with the West Coast town of Dobson.
Coordinates: 44°05′S 169°52′E / 44.083°S 169.867°E