Wabasca, also known as Wabasca-Desmarais, is a hamlet in northern Alberta, Canada, within the Municipal District of Opportunity No. 17. It is located between and along the South and North Wabasca Lakes, at the intersection of Highway 813 and Highway 754. It is approximately 123 kilometres (76 mi) northeast of Slave Lake.
Wabasca, which is the location of the M.D of Opportunity No. 17’s municipal office, consists of two communities – Wabasca and Desmarais. The hamlet has a population of 1,569, which is largely Native Canadian. Another 2,207 additional residents live on five Indian reserves in the immediate surrounding area. These reserves include Wabasca 166, 166A, 166B, 166C and 166D of the Bigstone Cree Nation, a Woodland Cree First Nation.
The name Wabasca originates from the Cree word wapuskau, meaning “white rapid” the name for the Wabasca River. Desmarais was named after Father Alphonse Desmarais, the first missionary in this area