Lake O' Hara, Yoho National Park

4.6
#5 of 15 in Things to do in Yoho National Park
Explore the vistas and deep azure waters of Lake O' Hara amidst an untouched alpine landscape. You'll find a number of well-marked trails around the lake. Situated on an elevation of 2,020 m (6,627 ft), the lake can be a challenge to get to--the best way is via bus. A trek up an 11 km (6.8 mi) trail is a more adventurous option, and be aware that you’re not guaranteed a bus ride down unless you made the reservation for the journey uphill. Book tours early to avoid disappointment. For Lake O' Hara and beyond, use our Yoho National Park tour planner to get the most from your Yoho National Park vacation.
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Lake O' Hara Reviews
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4.9
TripAdvisor
  • I spent 4 days here at Elizabeth Parker Hut with my husband. You can either reserve a bus ahead of time or hike in. I wouldn’t recommend walking in. There is a parking lot off the Trans Canada Highway...  more »
  • We were fortunate to score bus tickets up to the lake. The staff are very friendly and efficient. The lake itself is very pretty and flanked by great mountains and waterfalls and there are a ton of gr...  more »
  • Incredible place. Simply incredible. Everything I was told about it was true. It all began with the registration process, 3 months in advance. Tip: try to do it from several computers simultaneously, ...  more »
Google
  • Nestled in a high bowl of lush alpine meadows, Lake O’Hara, 11 kilometers (6.8 miles) from the nearest public road, is surrounded by dozens of smaller alpine lakes and framed by spectacular peaks permanently mantled in snow. As if that weren’t enough, the entire area is webbed by a network of hiking trails established over the last 90 years by luminaries such as Lawrence Grassi. Trails radiate from the lake in all directions; the longest is just 7.5 kilometers (4.7 miles), making Lake O’Hara an especially fine hub for day hiking. What makes this destination all the more special is that a quota system limits the number of visitors.
  • After seeing 25 lakes, didn't expect yet another lake to take me by surprise anymore. Until I came to Lake O'Hara. Absolute WOAH moment. Pictures just don't do the place justice. Come see it for yourself! There's a bus that goes up every 2h, but it's still well worth the 11km hike up if you can't catch the bus!
  • Well worth the 11km (2-4hrs) hike upwards, this includes the sudden heavy snow experienced during mid hike mind you!
  • Awesome hiking place
  • A place you must visit before you die

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Where to stay in Yoho National Park

Despite its isolated location, Yoho National Park offers a handful of luxury accommodations, most along Scenic Route 1. Some of the park's more remote lodges are accessible only by private transport. These isolated retreats--many of which deliberately avoid TV reception or Wi-Fi--typically cost a pretty penny. If you're looking for something a bit more affordable, consider staying in nearby Lake Louise or Banff and head to the park on a day trip.
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