Part of the RV experience is the ability to see some of the most beautiful places on Earth from the comforts of your home on wheels. When you are planning your Canadian Rocky Mountain itinerary, plan to spend a few days in southeastern British Columbia at Yoho National Park. Yoho National Park is flanked by some of the most picturesque landscapes in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Banff National Park rests along the eastern border, and Kootenay National Park borders Yoho’s southern end of the park.
The park’s name, Yoho, means awe and wonder in Cree, and Yoho National Park lives up to its name. The park has no shortage of stunning views. The snow-covered peaks and cascading waterfalls provide hikers many opportunities to hike among nature’s purest settings. While hiking, spend time learning about the area’s geology by visiting a half-billion-year-old fossil bed.
RVers staying in any of the RV-friendly campgrounds should arrive early as sites are assigned on arrival. Campers services are located in and around the park. Most RV camping areas have dumpsters and a sanitary dump station. If your campground doesn’t have a dump, you may use one from another campground. Laundry facilities are located in the village of Radium.
All campers and guests must adhere to the Bare Campsite regulations. The Bare Campsite program is an initiative created to keep wildlife and visitors safe by requiring that guests store wildlife attractants whenever they are not in use. Food, pet food, and food and pet-related items must be kept in a hard-sided vehicle, motorhome, trailer, or the park’s storage lockers.
Yoho National Park is located 140 miles (224 km) west of Calgary.
Yoho National Park is located in the Canadian Rockies in British Columbia. Because the park rests in a mountainous region, the roads leading in and around the park may have steep grades and switchback roads. Visitors should always be aware of weather conditions as well as other road restrictions when heading out toward the park.
The park is open year-round. The Visitor Services Centre is open during peak season. Entry fees apply for admission to the park. Fees vary. Contact the park for details.
The Monarch Campground is a pet-friendly, seasonally operating campground with 44 primitive spaces that accommodate smaller RVs. This campground is best for campers who are self-contained. Campers wishing to stay at Monarch may reserve their sites online. Sites are assigned on arrival, so it's best to check in as early as possible. The campground has a dump station and a potable water hydrant that is located centrally within the facility. No fires are permitted at the Monarch Campground. Please keep noises and conversations to a minimum during quiet hours, which are from 11:00 pm to 7:00 am daily. Generators are permitted but only between the hours of 8:00 am to 9:30 am and 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm only. This campground sits next to an operational train track, so if you don’t find the sounds of trains soothing, bring your earplugs for the night.
The Kicking Horse Campground has 88 reservable sites for RVers. The campground accepts reservations and is open seasonally. Sites are assigned on arrival, so it's best to check in as early as possible. The gravel driveway spaces accommodate RVs and trailers up to 45 feet in length. Some sites may accommodate larger rigs. Call the park for specific questions on the sizes of RVs allowed in the campground. The sites are primitive-style with no hookups, and each space has a picnic table and grill. Campers who want a campfire should purchase a fire permit and firewood. The campground is leashed-pet friendly, and the facility offers campers access to potable water, flush toilets, hot showers, and a sanitary dump. Please extinguish fires and keep noises and conversations to a minimum during quiet hours, which are from 11:00 pm to 7:00 am daily. Generators are permitted but only between the hours of 8:00 am to 9:30 am and 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm only.
The Hoodoo Creek Campground is a first-come, first-served, pet-friendly facility. Hoodoo Creek has 30 gravel driveway spaces and allows small RVs and trailers. Hoodoo Creek is a primitive-style campground with no hookups and it operates during the warmer months of the year. The campground provides a community potable water hydrant, and each camping area has a picnic table, and a fire ring. Campers who want to have a fire must purchase firewood and a fire permit before making a fire. Please extinguish fires and keep noises and conversations to a minimum during quiet hours. Bring your ear plugs if you don’t like the lulling sounds of trains at night. Quiet hours are from 11:00 pm to 7:00 am daily, and generators are permitted between the hours of 8:00 to 9:30 am and 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm only.
Yoho National Park is more than just a place to get outside and explore. The park has much more than outdoor activities and camping. Guests should plan a trip to the Visitor Services Center to check out the events and other activities happening in the park or to pick up maps and additional pertinent information and then head to Field, B.C. which is located in the heart of Yoho National Park. Field is a small village that sells items from local artisans as well as souvenirs and food. The village is home to approximately 200 Canadians who came to the town to share their love of art and a small community way of life.
During much of the summer, the park aims to provide fun activities for visitors of all ages. Almost daily, there is an event or program provided for park guests with a valid parks pass free of charge. Park rangers present programs and guided activities that focus on the outdoors, the local wildlife, and other natural areas of interest. Find the event schedule online or ask a member of the park staff what is going on during your visit. Reservations are required for many of the programs, so don’t wait to call and reserve your place if you find something that looks interesting.
People who love the outdoors and adventure have many choices of activities to pick from when they visit Yoho National Park. The vast trail system gives hikers, mountain bikers, and backpackers plenty of opportunities to spend more than one day outside exploring the wilderness. The park publishes a detailed trail map that outlines the different types of trails and separates the paths into segments based on short walks, half-day hikes, full-day hikes, and backpacking trails. Some of the trails outlined allow mountain bikes and even horses, so people with all interests will find paths that fit their athletic ability or interest. Experiencing the Canadian Rockies immersed in the trees and mountains never seemed so fun!
Wearing waders and standing knee-deep in some of the purest rivers is undoubtedly part of many anglers’ ideal fishing trip. Yoho National Park offers anglers fishing during every season, and it’s not just river fishing. Lake and River fishing is all part of the fishing experience, and because there are so many waterways, there is a good chance that you can fish every day of your trip. Before taking to the water, ensure you are aware of the fishing season, catch limits, and other restrictions. All anglers 16 and older must have a valid fishing license issued by the national park.
One of the most exciting parts about visiting a park in the Canadian Rockies is seeing some of the wildlife in its natural habitat. Because you are a visitor in the animal’s territory, it is your responsibility to protect both yourself and the animals by maintaining a safe distance from any animal. Yoho National Park is home to elk, bear, deer, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, cougar, coyote, and wolf. Smaller animals like marmot, squirrels, and pika also wander freely, so your chances of seeing your favorite creature is favorable. Remember to observe park speed limits, keep your pets on a leash at all times, and report any illegal activity to a member of the park staff.
Calling all geology fans! Take a guided tour to the Burgess Shale Fossil Site to witness what life was like over five hundred million years ago. The Burgess Shale Fossil Site contains fossilized remains of oceanic creatures that once inhabited the area around Yoho Park. Touring the site allows you to touch, feel, and learn about the different fossilized animals, and the information you acquire is educational, informative, and fun! Check with the park staff to see how you can be a part of the fossilized fun!