Yoho Hiking Tour
"Yoho" is a Cree word that translates roughly as "how magnificent" and, if anything, the Cree perhaps understated the utter magnificence of this Canadian Rocky Mountain region. Second smallest of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks, Yoho is a land of glacial lakes and towering, snowclad mountains whose steepness explains the park's many spectacular waterfalls. And not lost upon us is Yoho's 252-mile network of trails; without a doubt, Yoho is exciting as a hiking trip for Timberline in the season ahead.
Yoho assembles in Lake Louise early-afternoon of Day 1 (we'll provide a van shuttle from Calgary earlier in the day) with ample opportunity to hike to either of the famous teahouses above the Lake before dinner. We'll spend our first two overnights at lodging near the lake.
A word of warning about the hikes planned for Day 2 you won't believe what you will see on this day. Tucked away in the remote reaches above the Great Divide is some of the most amazing high alpine scenery that you will ever experience. We're headed for Lake O'Hara on this day and the myriad of alpine hiking opportunities that radiate in every direction from the lake. We'll climb from the lake, initially to Schaffer Lake and then well beyond along the McArthur High Route to the startling deep blue waters of Lake McArthur. We'll next return to McArthur Pass for a visit to the Odaray Prospect for what well may be the finest vista in the O'Hara area, including views of Morning Glory Lake and massive Cathedral Mountain (8 miles).
We're headed to beautiful Yoho Valley early morning of Day 3. From the Whiskey Jack trailhead, we'll climb to Yoho Lake near Yoho Pass and then beyond to the open slopes at the foot of Emerald Glacier. We'll settle in at the glacier's toe for lunch and enjoy the incredible views across the valley to Takakkaw Falls and up valley along the Iceline Trail (8 miles).
Lodging in Field will be "home" for the next three nights. On Day 4, we'll van shuttle to Emerald Lake for our encounter with the exciting Wapta Highline. We'll climb steadily from the lake's eastern shore in the shadow of the Presidential Range to Yoho Pass. Our trail moderates at the pass and we'll soon emerge from the trees into the open expanse of the Wapta Highline as it skirts the base of Wapta Peak. The views across valley of the heavily glaciated Presidents are incredible as we approach Burgess Pass. From Burgess, where we'll picnic, we'll be treated to the awesome panorama that includes Mt. Stephen, the town of Field in the Kicking Horse Valley and Emerald Lake. A long hiking descent follows and we're back to the Emerald Lake shoreline trail (12 miles).
We'll return to the Yoho Valley on Day 5, a day devoted to the many spectacular waterfalls of Yoho. Following a visit to Takakkaw Falls, which vies with Della Falls on Vancouver Island as Canada's highest waterfall, we'll hike upstream along the Yoho River toward Twin Falls. Waterfalls are everywhere Angel's Staircase, Point Lace, Laughing Falls and then a final climb to Twin Falls (11 miles).
We'll spend a final night and then hike leisurely to the glacier-green waters of Sherbrooke Lake above Kicking Horse Pass (5 miles), then our return to Calgary where our Yoho Hiking Tour concludes.
|Day 1||Plain of Six Glaciers Teahouse||3 miles|
|Day 2||Lake O'Hara - Lake McArthur - Odaray Plateay||12 miles|
|Day 3||Yoho Lake - Iceline Trail - Emerald Glacier||8 miles|
|Day 4||Wapta Highline - Burgess Pass - Emerald Lake||12 miles|
|Day 5||Yoho Valley - Angels Staircase - Point Lace - Laughing Falls - Twin Falls||11 miles|
|Day 6||Sherbrooke Lake||5 miles|
Total Hiking Mileage - 51 miles