Yoho National Park, Alberta, Canada, is part of Parcs Canada’s western park area located in Alberta, Canada. It is connected to the better-known Banff and Jasper national parks as well as the lesser-known Kootenay and Glacier National Parks. Yoho's most well-known attractions include Emerald Lake and Takakkaw Falls -- both of which shouldn’t be missed and are easy hikes for hikers of all skill levels and physical abilities. There are only a few hostels in or around Yoho, so be sure to book in advance, particularly during the high season (which occurs June through September).
Yoho National Park is nestled in the Canadian Rockies with a landscape that is diverse and picturesque, with a variety of sights to see. Activities such as canoeing Emerald Lake or the various other lakes in Yoho are available when the lake isn’t frozen; other activities, such as hiking, are available year-round. In the park, hiking ranges from easy to advanced; some of the most popular hikes, including a loop track around Emerald Lake and the hike to Takakkaw Falls, are rated as easy (flat tracks) and require no permits or reservations beyond the park pass. Some tracks in Yoho National Park, including to Lake O'Hara, require reservations and/or permits (which generally need to be made a couple of months or more in advance). Tracks that require permits and/or reservations can be identified by visiting the Parcs Canada website.
If you're interested in wildlife, there are plenty of animals to be spotted in and around Yoho National Park -- you might see a variety of birds, deer, coyotes, and more. Some of the wildlife present include animals that require a greater distance from to ensure safety, such as bears; Parcs Canada puts up notices in areas with higher levels of bear activity and encounters are easily avoided by attaching bells to your bag or clothing or making noise (such as singing or talking) to alert the bears of your presence, as the bears tend to avoid contact with humans.
The closest town to Yoho National Park is Field, which contains the information center for Yoho National Park as well as some restaurants, a gas station, and accommodation. Many businesses in Field close early (before 9 p.m., including the gas station). There are also trains that go through Field at various hours throughout the day and night, cutting off traffic from the highway for up to twenty minutes; so if you’re on a tight schedule, you may want to avoid the town. Additionally, the trains are noisier at night, so if you are a light sleeper, you may want to bring earplugs.
The easiest and most efficient way to get to and around Yoho (as well as the other parks in Canada) is by private motorized vehicle. As of this writing, public transportation to and around the parks in Canada is scarce and time consuming to nonexistent. As of this writing, options to reach the parks other than by private motorized vehicle include riding a Greyhound bus or train, walking, or biking.
When booked in advance, you should be able to find a bed in a Yoho National Park, Alberta, Canada hostel or nearby; the busiest times of year -- June through September -- experience the highest demand. If the Yoho National Park, Alberta, Canada hostels, hotels, and Airbnbs around Yoho are booked up, the best bet is to try to get to one of the campgrounds within the park as soon as possible, as they are first come, first serve (after reserving a site, you can leave to explore the park). Campgrounds in Yoho range from primitive (with only drop toilets at the trail head) to fully equipped (running water, showers, flush toilets, and cooking shelters) where campers can set up tents or park RVs.
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