Purple Springs

Established: 1957
Area: 6684 acres (2785.9 hectares) with 1,100 acres (445.3 hectares) flood irrigation and 2,000 acres (809.7 hectares) dryland tame pasture
Terrain: Gently rolling
Vegetation: Dryland tame pasture, irrigated tame pasture, and native rangeland
Region: Dry mixed grass sub-region of the grassland natural region
Nearby municipalities: 0.8 km east of the village of Purple Springs
Irrigation sources: St. Mary River Irrigation District
Taber Irrigation District
Livestock management: Purple Springs Grazing Association
(effective April 1, 1998)

Maintains the fences, dugouts, corral sites and buildings at the headquarters.

Provides the bulls for the breeding programs.

Grazing season: Mid-May to mid-October
Cattle: Charolais
Dry cows
Yearling heifers
Capacity: 1300 head of livestock
Wildlife and game: Deer
Upland birds
Recreational activities: Hunting in fall
Industrial activities: Natural gas production

The Purple Springs Grazing Reserve is the first irrigated reserve in Alberta. Although the Purple Springs Grazing Reserve is quite small in area, it requires two corral systems because the reserve has two separate parcels, divided by the Canadian Pacific Railway tracks and Highway 3. This makes it impractical to move animals from one parcel to the other.

In 2004, the grazing association began a project to upgrade the flood irrigated fields by replacing open ditches with 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) of gated pipe. In 2006, another 1.3 miles (2.1 kilometers) of gated pipe were installed. In 2008, the grazing association began a project to develop 130 acres pivot irrigation.

Access routes have been provided for those wishing to visit the reserve.

Provincial Grazing Reserves are popular recreational sites for the general public. Following is a list of conditions that need to be adhered to when recreating on the Purple Springs Provincial Grazing Reserve.

Industrial Guidelines and Industrial Operational Guidelines

Regulatory Conditions of Recreational Access

Under Sections 9(3) and 9(4) of the Recreational Access Regulation, recreational users must:

  • Not litter;
  • Have direct control of any animal brought onto the agricultural disposition land;
  • Not park vehicles so that they block an approach to land;
  • Not enter or use any building or improvement on the disposition;
  • Not cause any damage to the agricultural disposition land or the property of the disposition holder;
  • Leave gates and other property as they were found;
  • Comply with an applicable recreational management plan, if any; and
  • Comply with the restrictions, prohibitions, terms and conditions, if any, imposed by the Local Settlement Officer, or Director.

For more information, see:

Specific Access Conditions for this Disposition

  • LSO conditions - No recreational access is permitted in pastures where livestock are grazing.
  • LSO conditions - Recreational motorized vehicles allowed on existing gravel trails and roads only.
  • LSO conditions - No fires permitted at any time.
  • LSO condition - No recreational motorized vehicles allowed during a fire ban imposed by the Local Fire Authority.
  • LSO condition - No overnight camping is permitted.


Page Information

Updated: Sep 17, 2015