Yoho National Park
Free entry to Canada’s National Parks? You heard right! We are gearing up for the most festive year across Canada and there are few things you should know to help you be part of it. Below is your guide to Yoho National Park for a great 2017.
Burgess Shale guided hikes
Walking to one of the Burgess Shale Fossil sites (Walcott Quarry or Mount Stephen) is like taking a time machine back in time. First identified by palaeontologist Charles Walcott, this is one of the world’s most significant fossil finds and dates back 505 million years!
Fossil found hiking along the Burgess Shale guided Hike
© Parks Canada; Photo: Paul Zizka
Visit a National Historic Site
Just as Canada celebrates a birthday, Canadian National Historic Sites will be 100 this year too. Why not tick one off of your list while you hike the Yoho Valley. Operated seasonally as a private lodge, this charming tea house is a fine example of the early rustic design in Canada’s national parks. Canadian Pacific Railway built the tea house in stages, beginning around 1908. The chalet is a vivid reminder of the early days of hiking, mountaineering and trail riding in the national parks.
Twin Falls Tea House is located in the Yoho Valley and can be reached via an 8 kms hike
© Parks Canada
When British Columbia joined Confederation in 1871, it was on the condition that Prime Minister John A. Macdonald would build a railway to link the province to the rest of the country. The steep grade in Kicking Horse Pass posed a serious challenge and the tunnels built remain a feat of engineering to this day. Part of the Kicking Horse Pass National Historic Site, the Spiral Tunnels are an easy place to stop before getting to the Village of Field.
Spiral Tunnels model as seen at the Spiral Tunnel exhibit in the Field Visitor Information Centre.
© Parks Canada
Do the classics: hike the Iceline trail; stroll to Takakkaw Falls
The Iceline Trail is one of the most iconic trails in the park. It offers kilometers of glaciers and mountain views! This is a strenuous full day hike.
For a shorter adventure, Takakkaw falls is a roaring waterfall within a short walk from your car. Local information: there’s also a rock climbing route that goes up at the edge of the waterfall. Try to spot the climbers!
Camping in the backcountry
Yoho National Park has amazing trails and backcountry campgrounds that offer visitors unique wilderness experiences. Instead of hiking the Iceline trail in a day, make your adventure a multi-day camping trip by trying “backcountry” camping for the first time!
Cross-Country Skiing and snowshoeing at Emerald Lake
Emerald Lake is a great winter wonderland destination. With its nordic trails and expansive views, this is truly a Canadian adventure! Make sure to check avalanche conditions and respect trail signage.
Nordic skis and snowshoes can be rented at Emerald Sports and Gift
Photo: Kicking Horse Ski Club
Ice Climbing close to town
For the adventurous and skilled climbers, Yoho National Park is host to some spectacular ice climbing routes near the village of Field. Be sure to check avalanche conditions before heading out (www.pc.gc.ca/avalanche).
Fall and Spring:
Walk the village of Field
Under a sea of yellow-leafed trees and snow-dusted peaks, Field is a gem in the fall. Find its historical houses, walk its garden-lined street and shop or eat in the local businesses.
Sunset walk to Wapta Falls
Located on the Kicking Horse River, Wapta Falls is the perfect end-of-day hike with its two kilometre walk. Local secret: you can also go in the fall when the snow covered mountains make a spectacular backdrop for that perfect photo!
Save the date and reserve early: January 12, 2017 is when the Parks Canada reservation system opens for camping and guided hikes. Lake O’Hara reservations open April 20, 2017. Make sure you reserve early!
Entry is free to Canada’s national parks. Save yourself time and get your free Discovery Pass online before you leave home or stop at any national park gate or visitor centre to get your daily entry pass.
Other fees still apply.