Yoho National Park is one of the many national parks that help to make British Columbia such a fine destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Found on the western slopes of the Canada Rockies in southeastern British Columbia, this 507-square-mile park is one of four contiguous mountain parks that serve to protect some of the world's most scenic lands. Yoho National Park in particular is known for its famed rock walls, high waterfalls, lofty peaks, and railroad history. It also boasts the Kicking Horse River, which is a white water rafting enthusiast's dream. As for the park's railroad history, you can get can get in touch with it by visiting the interpretive area at Big Hill's Lower Spiral Tunnel Viewpoint. At this same viewpoint area, you can also watch trains enter and exit one of two spiral tunnels that were built in 1909.
Yoho National Park borders Kootenay National Park and the Alberta province's Banff National Park. It was established in 1886 and is named for a Cree word that expresses the sentiment of awe. The name is an apt one, as this park is indeed awe inspiring. Snowcapped peaks soar high into the sky, and peaceful forests provide refuge for a variety of animal species. Mountain goats, wolves, coyotes, moose, and elk are among the animals that call Yoho National Park home. One of the waterfalls here is the third highest waterfall in Canada. Known as Takakkaw Falls, this waterfall drops an impressive 833 feet.
One of the best ways to see Yoho National Park is to hiking. There are more than 249 miles of trails to choose from, and they offer something to suit most everyone. Many people who go hiking in Yoho National Park hit the relatively easy Emerald Lake Trail, partly because of the wonderful lake views that it offers. If you're up for a longer hiking experience, you might hop on the Yoho Glacier Moraine Trail. It measures out to five miles and offers awesome views of waterfalls and glaciers.
If you are really up for doing some unforgettable hiking in Yoho National Park, you might book one of the guided tours that have the Burgess Shale as the main focus. This fossil bed area boasts some of the most exquisitely preserved fossils that you will find anywhere, and these fossils depict some of the earliest modern animals on the planet. The hike to the Burgess Shale area is moderately difficult, and you'll cover twelve miles if you complete the round trip. The guided hikes last around ten hours on average.
The list of things to do at Yoho National Park doesn't only include hiking and learning about the park's railroad history. During the warmer months, taking scenic drives, going cycling, enjoying a mountain biking excursion, and doing some mountaineering are some of the other activity options. Ice climbing, cross-country skiing, ski touring, and snowshoeing are among the top winter activities. Whatever you have in mind for your Yoho National Park visit, the place is bound to leave an impact on you.
If you are planning on visiting Yoho National Park while traveling through western Canada, you might first stop at the visitor center that can be found in the small town of Field. The center is more specifically found near the entrance of the town off Highway 1. Field offers some cost effective Yoho National Park lodging establishments, mostly low frills hotels. You can also consider staying at one of the more upscale resort lodges at the park. These lodges include the Cathedral Mountain Lodge, which offers relatively luxurious cabin units, and the Emerald Lake Lodge, which also provides comfort in its 85 cozy guest units. Enticing facilities complement the guest units at both lodges.
Staying in a room or cabin unit isn't the only option when it comes to Yoho National Park lodging. The park also boasts campsites. There are five campgrounds to choose from if you want to do some Yoho National Park camping. The most complete in terms of facilities and amenities is the Kicking Horse Campground, which is found just a mile and half east of Field. Thanks in part to its facilities and its excellent location near the main Takakkaw Falls road, this campground fills up fast during the peak visitor months of July and August. If you want to be even closer to the falls, you might prefer one of the 35 sites at the Takakkaw Falls walk-in campground.