Elk Point's water supply

By Steve Andrishak

From the time the hamlet of Elk Point was founded in 1908 to the year of 1954 our residents obtained their water supply either from a water well located on their property or from some neighboring well. During this period of time there were few hamlet or village regulations and if a resident wanted to keep a milk cow, a horse or two, or a flock of chickens on his property there was little to stop photos This created a serious problem during the spring run off, a time when many water wells became polluted or contaminated making water unfit to drink.

To offset this problem the Village of Elk Point voted to install a water and sewer system in 1953. The water and sewer lines were soon laid down and the project was completed in 1954. Elk Point's first water supply came from a deep well located two miles west of the village. The water was pumped into a wooden water tower which was located near our old elementary school. This water supply had an excessive amount of iron in it and in no time all water appliances had dark rust stains on them which were difficult to take off. The water tower served its purpose for 14 years. In the winter time small leaks in the tower created massive icicles which hung on all sides of this wooden structure.

In 1968 the town of Elk Point had a huge reservoir built south west of town. Its capacity when filled totaled more than 20 million gallons of water. This reservoir drew its water from the Dog Rump Creek and Armistice Lake during the spring runoff.  During dry years this water supply system created many problems.  The town crew had to constantly destroy dams built - by beaver in order to maintain a constant flow of water. At this same time a water treatment plant was built near the reservoir. Here the water was treated so it was fit for human consumption. Next it was piped to a large underground storage tank which was located in the north end of town. Soon after the huge reservoir was put to use, the old wooden tower was demolished.

About 3 or 4 years ago the town decided to pump water from the North Saskatchewan River to the reservoir. A pipeline was laid on top of the surface (about two miles long) and about twice a year the reservoir was filled to capacity. This new system allowed a steady flow of water to the reservoir at all times and eliminated water shortages which often occurred when other methods were used.