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Yoho National Park

Coordinates: 51°23′43″N 116°29′12″W / 51.39528°N 116.48667°W / 51.39528; -116.48667
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Yoho National Park
Takakkaw Falls
Map showing the location of Yoho National Park
Map showing the location of Yoho National Park
Location of Yoho National Park in Canada
Map showing the location of Yoho National Park
Map showing the location of Yoho National Park
Location of Yoho National Park in British Columbia
LocationBritish Columbia, Canada
Nearest cityGolden
Coordinates51°23′43″N 116°29′12″W / 51.39528°N 116.48667°W / 51.39528; -116.48667
Area1,313 km2 (507 sq mi)
EstablishedOctober 10, 1886
Visitors663,878 (in 2022–23[2])
Governing bodyParks Canada
Websiteparks.canada.ca/pn-np/bc/yoho Edit this at Wikidata
Part ofCanadian Rocky Mountain Parks
CriteriaNatural: (vii), (viii)
Inscription1984 (8th Session)

Yoho National Park (/ˈjh/ YOH-hoh)[3] is a national park of Canada. It is located within the Rocky Mountains along the western slope of the Continental Divide of the Americas in southeastern British Columbia, bordered by Kootenay National Park to the south and Banff National Park to the east in Alberta. The word Yoho is a Cree expression of amazement or awe, and it is an apt description for the park's spectacular landscape of massive ice fields and mountain peaks, which rank among the highest in the Canadian Rockies.[4]

Yoho covers 1,313 square kilometres (507 sq mi), the smallest of the region's four contiguous national parks, which also include Jasper, Kootenay, and Banff National Parks, as well as three British Columbia provincial parks—Hamber Provincial Park, Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park, and Mount Robson Provincial Park. Together, these parks form the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks World Heritage Site. Yoho's administrative and visitor centre is in Field, British Columbia, beside the Trans-Canada Highway.



Yoho National Park is in the traditional territories of the Secwepemc and Ktunaxa First Nations.[5] Before the establishment of the park, the Ktunaxa primarily used the area—specifically, Kicking Horse Pass—to cross the Rockies in order to access bison hunting grounds on the eastern side of the mountains.[6][7] The park was created following a trip by Prime Minister John A. Macdonald and his wife Agnes through the Rockies on the newly completed Canadian Pacific Railway, Canada's first transcontinental. After his return to Ottawa, Yoho National Park was created on October 10, 1886. Glacier National Park was created on the same day, making Yoho and Glacier the second and third national parks in the country, after Rocky Mountains Park (now named Banff National Park).

The contiguous national parks of Banff, Jasper, Kootenay, and Yoho, as well as the Mount Robson, Mount Assiniboine, and Hamber provincial parks, were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984.[8]



Common species of animals that roam in this park are the timber wolf, coyote, badger, moose, elk, mule deer, mountain goat, golden-mantled ground squirrel, rufous hummingbird, hoary marmot, wolverine, cougar, pika, lynx, grizzly bear, and black bear.



The weather in the park is localized and changeable.[9] Located on the western side of the continental divide, it receives more precipitation than areas east of the divide.[9] Precipitation in the park increases with elevation.[9] In winter, average temperatures are between 5 and −15 °C (41.0 and 5.0 °F) from the months November to April although temperatures can range between 10 and −35 °C (50.0 and −31.0 °F).[9] The coldest weather usually occurs in the months December to February.[9] In summer, mean temperatures average 12.5 °C (54.5 °F) with an average high of 20 °C (68.0 °F) and an average low of 5 °C (41.0 °F).[9] Snowfall and freezing temperatures can occur during the summertime at altitudes above 1,500 m (4,900 ft).[9]


Chancellor Peak and Kicking Horse River
Emerald Lake
Lake McArthur, 1924 painting by J. E. H. MacDonald
Natural Bridge in Yoho National Park

The Kicking Horse River, a Canadian Heritage River, originates in the Wapta and Waputik icefields in the park. This river has created a natural bridge through solid rock. This formation is located 3 km (1.9 mi) west of Field, accessible from the road to Emerald Lake.

The Canadian Rockies consist of sedimentary rock, with numerous fossil deposits. In particular, the Burgess Shale, in Yoho National Park, has among the world's richest deposits of rare[further explanation needed] fossils.[citation needed] The Burgess Shale was discovered in 1909 by Charles Doolittle Walcott. In the southeastern corner of the park is an igneous intrusion known as the Ice River Complex containing deposits of sodalite, an ornamental stone.




  • Takakkaw Falls have a total height of 373 metres (1,224 ft),[11] making it the 2nd tallest waterfall in Canada.[12][13] The main drop of the waterfall has a height of 254 metres (833 ft).[11]
  • Wapta Falls is the largest waterfall of the Kicking Horse River, at about 30 metres (98 ft) high and 150 metres (490 ft) wide.[14][15] Its average flow can reach 254 cubic metres per second (9,000 cu ft/s).[16][17]

See also



  1. ^ "Protected Planet | Yoho National Park Of Canada". Protected Planet. Retrieved 2020-10-13.
  2. ^ Canada, Parks. "Parks Canada attendance 2022_23 - Parks Canada attendance 2022_23 - Open Government Portal". open.canada.ca. Retrieved 2024-05-07.
  3. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: Parks Canada (2017-07-26). Parks Can Can Canada 2017. Retrieved 2019-05-19.
  4. ^ "Kicking Horse – Canadian Heritage Rivers System Canada's National River Conservation Program". chrs.ca. Retrieved 2019-06-18.
  5. ^ Parks Canada Agency, Government of Canada (2020-02-13). "What we heard - Yoho National Park". www.pc.gc.ca. Retrieved 2022-04-09.
  6. ^ "Yoho National Park | The Canadian Encyclopedia". www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca. Retrieved 2022-04-09.
  7. ^ Loy, Thomas H. (1972). Archaeological survey of Yoho National Park, 1971. National Historic Parks and Sites Service, Dept. of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. OCLC 59738737.
  8. ^ "Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks". World Heritage list. UNESCO. Retrieved August 26, 2010.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g "Yoho National Park Weather". Parks Canada. Retrieved August 22, 2015.
  10. ^ "Mount Balfour". cdnrockiesdatabases.ca. Retrieved 2023-08-06.
  11. ^ a b "Takakkaw Falls". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 25 February 2019.
  12. ^ Evans, David. "Takakkaw Falls". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 25 February 2019.
  13. ^ "Waterfalls in the Canadian Rockies: Field, British Columbia". www.field.ca. Retrieved 13 August 2018.
  14. ^ "Northwest Waterfall Survey". www.waterfallsnorthwest.com.
  15. ^ Wapta Falls at Berkeley
  16. ^ "Waterfalls of British Columbia - Wapta Falls; Yoho Natl. Park". www.waterfallswest.com.
  17. ^ "Wapta Falls - Waterfalls of the Northeastern United States". www.northeastwaterfalls.com.