Madawaska River (Ontario)

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Madawaska River
Madawaska River Whitney.JPG
Upper Madawaska River at Whitney
Name origin: From name of Algonquian band "Matouweskarini" meaning "people of the shallows"
Country Canada
Province Ontario
Regions Eastern Ontario, Central Ontario, Northeastern Ontario
Districts Renfrew County, Nipissing District
Part of Saint Lawrence River drainage basin
 - left Opeongo River
 - right York River
Source Source Lake
 - location Canisbay Township, Unorganized South Part, Nipissing District
 - elevation 450 m (1,476 ft)
 - coordinates 45°33′52″N 78°37′56″W / 45.56444°N 78.63222°W / 45.56444; -78.63222
Mouth Ottawa River
 - location Arnprior, Renfrew County
 - elevation 70 m (230 ft)
 - coordinates 45°26′35″N 76°20′56″W / 45.44306°N 76.34889°W / 45.44306; -76.34889Coordinates: 45°26′35″N 76°20′56″W / 45.44306°N 76.34889°W / 45.44306; -76.34889
Length 230 km (143 mi)
Basin 8,470 km2 (3,270 sq mi)
 - average 85 m3/s (3,002 cu ft/s)
Location of the mouth of the Madawaska River in southern Ontario

The Madawaska River is a river in the Saint Lawrence River drainage basin in Ontario, Canada.[1][2] The river is 230 km (143 mi) long and drains an area of 8,470 km2 (3,270 sq mi).[3] Its name comes from an Algonquian band of the region known as "Matouweskarini", meaning "people of the shallows".


For a map showing the river course, see this reference.[2]
The Madawaska River originates at Source Lake in geographic Canisbay Township in the Unorganized South Part of Nipissing District, in the highlands of southern Algonquin Park. It flows east, dropping 380 m (1,247 ft) before emptying into the Ottawa River at Arnprior.


In the late 19th century, the river was used to transport lumber from the forested areas surrounding the river. Beginning in the 1960s, the river was used to generate hydroelectric power. Undammed sections of the river are also used for canoeing, kayaking and recreational fishing.


Lakes and reservoirs[edit]

The lower portion of the Madawaska River supports several large lakes, including:


Most common species of game fish found in this river include: Walleye (Yellow Pickerel), Northern Pike, Muskellunge, Smallmouth Bass, and Large Mouth Bass.

Provincial Parks[edit]

Two sections of the river are designated and protected as provincial waterway parks:

Both parks are administered by Ontario Parks but are non-operating, meaning there are no visitor facilities or services available. Both are ideal for whitewater canoeing.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Madawaska River". Geographical Names Data Base. Natural Resources Canada. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  2. ^ a b "Madawaska River". Atlas of Canada. Natural Resources Canada. 2010-02-04. Retrieved 2012-03-12.  Shows the course of the river highlighted on a map.
  3. ^ "Rivers Flowing into the Atlantic Ocean". Atlas of Canada. Natural Resources Canada. Archived from the original on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2010-10-08. 
  4. ^ "Upper Madawaska River". Ontario Parks. 2002-11-12. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  5. ^ "Lower Madawaska River". Ontario Parks. 2004-01-05. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 

Other map sources:

External links[edit]