Cold Lake, Alberta

Cold Lake
—  City  —
City of Cold Lake


Cold Lake is located in Alberta
Cold Lake
Location of Cold Lake in Alberta
Coordinates: 54°27′51″N 110°10′57″W / 54.46417°N 110.1825°W / 54.46417; -110.1825
Country Canada
Province Alberta
Region Central Alberta
Census division 12
Incorporated [1][2]
 - Village 

December 31, 1953
 - Town July 2, 1955
 - City October 1, 2000
 – Mayor Craig Copeland
 – Governing body
 – CAO Kevin Nagoya
 – MP Brian Storseth
 – MLA Genia Leskiw
Area (2006)[4]
 – Total 59.30 km2 (22.9 sq mi)
Elevation 544 m (1,785 ft)
Population (2006)[4]
 – Total 11,991
 – Density 202.2/km2 (523.7/sq mi)
  Population rank: 87
Time zone MST (UTC−7)
 – Summer (DST) MDT (UTC−6)
Postal code span T9M
Area code(s) +1-780
Highways Highway 28
Highway 55
Website City of Cold Lake

Cold Lake is a city in northeastern Alberta, Canada, named after the lake it is situated near.



The city is situated in Alberta's "Lakeland" district, 300 km northeast of Edmonton, near the Alberta-Saskatchewan provincial border. The area surrounding the city is sparsely populated, and consists mostly of farmland. The Cold Lake Air Weapons Range, located to the north of the city, is the Canadian equivalent to the United States Air Force's Nellis Air Force Range.


Cold Lake was first recorded on a 1790 map, by the name of Coldwater Lake.[2] Originally three communities, Cold Lake was formed by merging the Town of Grand Centre, the Town of Cold Lake, and Medley (Canadian Forces Base 4 Wing) on October 1, 1996. Grand Centre was renamed Cold Lake South, and the original Cold Lake is known as Cold Lake North. Because of its origins, the area is also known as the Tri-Town.


The population of the City of Cold Lake according to its 2009 municipal census is 13,924.[5]

In 2006, Cold Lake had a population of 11,991 living in 4,834 dwellings, a 4.1% increase from 2001. The city has a land area of 59.30 km2 (22.90 sq mi) and a population density of 202.2 /km2 (524 /sq mi).[4]

About 8.7% of residents identified themselves as aboriginal at the time of the 2006 census.[6]

Almost 89% of residents identified English and more than 7% identified French as their first language. Almost 1% identified German, 0.5% identified Chinese, 0.4% each identified Dutch and Ukrainian, and 0.3% each identified Cree and Arabic as their first language learned.[7]

About 82 percent of residents identified as Christian at the time of the 2001 census, while more than 17 percent indicated they had no religious affiliation. For specific denominations Statistics Canada found that 40% of residents identified as Roman Catholic, 14% identified with the United Church of Canada, 5.5% identified as Anglican, 3% as Baptist, 2.5% as Lutheran, and 2% as Pentecostal.[8]


The city's economy is inextricably linked to military spending at CFB Cold Lake. The region also supports oil and gas exploration and production. The Athabasca Oil Sands project in Fort McMurray is having a growing influence in the region as well. The Cold Lake oil sands may become a significant contributor to the local economy.

Every year Cold Lake hosts military forces from around the world for Exercise Maple Flag, a training exercise where pilots and support staff of NATO allies can take advantage of the Air Weapons Range and relatively open rural air space. Running from 4 to 6 weeks and starting in May of each year, commercial accommodations in the entire region are left with little to no vacancy. This annual exercise contributes a substantial amount of capital into these industries and other hospitality-related businesses.


Cold Lake is situated near a large number of campgrounds due to its proximity to the lake. The M.D. campground has powered sites, shower facilities with flush toilets, a covered camp picnic area, and a lookout. The Cold Lake Provincial Park has a large number of sites, and is more secluded than the M.D. site (which is surrounded by development). The Provincial campground boasts a wilderness trail system, a beach, boatlaunch and a powered section. Nearby Meadow Lake Provincial Park to the east, across the border in Saskatchewan, has facilities similar to Cold Lake Provincial Park.

Kinosoo Beach is a favorite destination during the hot summer months between June and August.

The Iron Horse Trail, a recreational trail situated on a former railway line (see rail trail) has its eastern-most terminus in Cold Lake.

Recreational past times include, among others:

  • Hockey[9]
  • Box Lacrosse[10]
  • Geocaching
  • Martial Arts
  • Rugby
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Bowling
  • Curling
  • Golf
  • Horseback Riding
  • 4H (in Cherry Grove)
  • Rodeo (Cold Lake Ag Society)
  • Dance
  • Sailing[11]
  • Boating
  • Fishing
  • Downhill Skiing[12]
  • Cold Lake Museums


The last local election was held in October 2010, seeing 14 councillor candidates and 2 mayoral candidates. The incumbent mayor was re-elected, and 3 incumbent councillors were re-elected to council.

  • Raymond Coates, 1996–1998
  • Hansa Thaleshvar, 1998–2004
  • Allan Buck, 2004–2007
  • Craig Copeland, 2007–present

The current councillors of Cold Lake are Bob Buckle, Duane Lay, Victoria Lefebvre, Darrell MacDonald, Kelvin Plain, and Chris Vining.

At the provincial level, the city is in the district of Bonnyville-Cold Lake. Its current representative is Genia Leskiw, from the Progressive Conservatives.

At the federal level, the city is in the district of Westlock—St. Paul, and is the largest community in the riding. Its current representative is Brian Storseth, from the Conservative Party of Canada.


Cold Lake hosts several public schools:

Northern Lights School Division No. 69(Publicly funded)

Northern Lights School Division was the recipient of the Alberta Premier's Award for Innovation and Excellence for its Literacy Programs

Lakeland Catholic School District (Publicly funded)[13]

Lakeland Catholic was the recipient of the "2005 Alberta Premier's Award for Innovation and Excellence" for their "Anti-bullying/Moral Intelligence" Initiative.

  • Assumption Junior/Senior High School (Catholic) (7-12 French Immersion and English)
  • Holy Cross Elementary School (Catholic) (K-6 French Immersion and English)
  • St. Dominic's Elementary School (Catholic) (K-6 French Immersion and English)
Francophone School (Publicly funded)
  • Ecole Voyageur (pre-school-12 French, Catholic)


Cold Lake's climate is humid continental (Köppen climate classification Dfb).

Climate data for Cold Lake
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 10.6
Average high °C (°F) −11.4
Daily mean °C (°F) −16.6
Average low °C (°F) −21.7
Record low °C (°F) −48.3
Precipitation mm (inches) 17.9
Sunshine hours 88.3 118.5 169.1 223.6 263.8 269.7 288.4 273.1 175.6 145 82.3 67.2 2,164.6
Source: Environment Canada[14]


Cold Lake has a variety of sports, including:

  • Hockey (Home to the Cold Lake Ice, Junior B Team) & (Home to the Cold Lake Freeze, Minor Hockey Teams)
  • Lacrosse (Home to the Cold Lake Heat, Minor Lacrosse Teams)[15]
  • Volleyball(Assumption and CLHS)
  • Football (CLHS Royals)
  • Basketball (Assumption and CLHS)
  • Soccer (Indoor and outdoor)
  • Baseball
  • Rugby (Assumption and CLHS combined team and Cold Lake Penguins Men's RFC)
  • Hapkido
  • Tae Kwon Do (unified taekwondo, and occasionally International Taekwon-Do Federation or World Taekwondo Federation)
  • Figure Skating (Cold Lake Figure Skating Club)[16]
  • Figure Skating (Norlight Skating Club)
  • Downhill Skiing (Kinosoo Ridge Snow Resort)[12]
  • Dancing (Pirouette School of Dance with award winning dance team)[17]
  • Mixed Martial Arts (Team Sparta)
  • Roller Derby (Lakeland Ladykillers Roller Derby League)

Cadet Summer Training Centre

Cold Lake is also home to the Cold Lake Cadet Summer Training Centre (CLCSTC). CLCSTC is situated in the heart of 4 Wing Cold Lake and hosts around five hundred Cadets (Air, Sea and Army) and 200 staff members including both Cadet staff and CF officers.[citation needed] Courses at CLCSTC include the Senior Leaders Course (6 weeks) which comprises a wing of two squadrons, each named after the two fighter squadrons of 4 Wing Cold Lake, Nighthawk Squadron and Cougar Squadron, each with 4 flights of about 30 cadets, the Survival Instructor Course (6 weeks) and Basic Survival Course (3 weeks), which includes roughly 300 cadets a summer and the Service Band Course (6 weeks) which includes around 30 cadets.[citation needed] There is also Basic Fitness and Sports (3 weeks).[citation needed] CLCSTC is run by the Department of National Defense in conjunction with the Air Cadet League of Canada.[citation needed] The Service Band and Senior Leaders Course are situated on the main base, whereas the Survival Wing is situated in a more suitably wild area a small distance away from the base.[citation needed] The 56-year old Service Band and Senior Leaders Course ceased in 2010, with the latter moving to a regional camp in 2011.[citation needed]

Notable residents

  • Alex Auld, NHL goaltender
  • Alex Janvier, Artist

See also


  1. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2010-09-17). "Municipal Profile – City of Cold Lake". Retrieved 2010-10-02. 
  2. ^ a b Sanders, Harry (2003). The Story Behind Alberta Names How Cities, Towns, Villages and Hamlets Got their Names. Red Deer Press. pp. 92. ISBN 978-0-88995-256-0. 
  3. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs: Municipal Officials Search
  4. ^ a b c Statistics Canada (Census 2006). "Cold Lake - Community Profile". Retrieved 2007-06-30. 
  5. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2009-09-15). "Alberta 2009 Official Population List". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  6. ^ "Cold Lake". Aboriginal Identity (8), Sex (3) and Age Groups (12) for the Population of Canada, Provinces, Territories, Census Metropolitan Areas and Census Agglomerations, 2006 Census - 20% Sample Data. Statistics Canada. 2008-01-15. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  7. ^ "Cold Lake". Detailed Mother Tongue (186), Knowledge of Official Languages (5), Age Groups (17A) and Sex (3) for the Population of Canada, Provinces, Territories, Census Metropolitan Areas and Census Agglomerations, 2001 and 2006 Censuses - 20% Sample Data. Statistics Canada. 2007-11-20. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  8. ^ "Cold Lake". Religion (95A), Age Groups (7A) and Sex (3) for Population, for Canada, Provinces, Territories, Census Metropolitan Areas and Census Agglomerations, 1991 and 2001 Censuses - 20% Sample Data. Statistics Canada. 2007-03-01. Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  9. ^ Cold Lake Minor Hockey
  10. ^ Lakeland Lacrosse
  11. ^ Cold Lake Sailing Club
  12. ^ a b Kinosoo Ridge Snow Resort
  13. ^ Lakeland Catholic - Home Page
  14. ^ Environment CanadaCanadian Climate Normals 1971–2000. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  15. ^ Lakeland Lacrosse Lakeland Lacrosse
  16. ^ Cold Lake Figure Skating Club
  17. ^ Pirouette School of Dance- Dance Studio

External links

Coordinates: 54°27′51″N 110°10′57″W / 54.46417°N 110.1825°W / 54.46417; -110.1825 (Cold Lake)

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