|Southeast BC Nature Viewing Region|
|Emerald Lake, Yoho National Park|
|Emerald Lake: photo by Bill Kinkaid||Emerald Lake: photo by Bill Kinkaid|
|A glacier fed lake in a valley surrounded by peaks.|
|Geographical Description||Rocky Mountains|
|Area/ Trail Length||5.2 km trail around lake.|
|Seasons to Visit||Year-round; free of snow roughly from late May through October.|
|Habitat||Montane lodgepole pine/Douglas-fir, Interior red-cedar/western hemlock and Englemann spruce/subalpine fir forests, avalanche zones, subalpine meadows, riparian, alluvial and glacial outwash plain.|
|Viewing Highlights||Different aspects of the lake present different ecosystems: cedar/hemlock on the cooler and wetter south side of the lake, pine/Douglas-fir on the warm and dry north side, and subalpine spruce-fir on the alluvial fan at the head of the lake.|
An excellent location to view the results of glaciation and water-caused erosion.
Emerald Lake Circuit is a moderately easy trail around the lake with interpretive panels.
Very good for spring and early summer wildflowers.
Subalpine birds and other wildlife.
Scenic views of mountains from all parts of the valley.
Natural Bridge, on the access road to Emerald Lake from the TransCanada Highway, is an arch of rock across the Kicking Horse River where the creek has eroded away the rock beneath.
The Burgess Shale site high above the lake is world famous for Cambrian marine fossils. They can be visited only on an organised tour involving a strenuous hike; there is an interpretive display at the Visitor Centre in Field.
|Main Access||From the Parks Canada visitor centre in Field, west 1.6 km on Highway 1 to Emerald Lake Road. Then 9 km to the end of the road at the outlet of the lake. This road is paved and good for all vehicles but the parking area can be very busy. National Parks permit is required for all vehicles on this road.|
|Cautions||Be aware of bears and cougars; do not disturb any wildlife.|
Trails other than the lake circuit are moderately difficult to strenuous and are in a lightly travelled wildland area; you need to be in good physical condition and be properly equipped with good hiking footwear, rain gear, food and water. Water is available from creeks but should be boiled or treated.
The south end of the trail runs through Emerald Lake Lodge property. Do not disturb the lodge or its guests or employees.
The avalanche path on the northwest side of the lake should be avoided in winter and early spring
There is no mobile phone service in this area.
|Jurisdiction||National Parks of Canada|
|Regulations||No camping or fires. Dogs on leash.|
|Facilities||Picnic site and pit toilets.|
Emerald Lake Lodge (privately operated) provides full service overnight roofed accommodation. There is a gift shop, canoe rentals and small coffee shop open to the public; all other lodge facilities are for guests only..
Basic services in Field; all services in Golden, 55 km west of Field, or Banff, 83 km east.
|Other Recreational Activities||Canoeing; snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in winter.|
|Other Connections||A network of strenuous hiking trails radiates from the lake, including connections to Yoho Valley via Yoho Pass trail and to the town of Field via Burgess Pass trail.|
|FMI||Parks Canada in Field 250-343-6783|
|Friends of Yoho National Park|
|Emerald Lake Lodge|
|© 2016 BC Nature|