Log off and switch on airplane mode—it’s time to disconnect from your stressors and reconnect to what means the most to you.
And what better place to do it than an RV camping trip to Yoho National Park.
Yoho National Park has everything you need to relax—fresh air, miles of hiking trails, numerous fishing opportunities and geological spectacles for your viewing pleasure.
Before you hit the road, arm yourself with sufficient knowledge to guide your trip.
Buckle up and get ready to cruise through this tell-all Yoho National Park RV camping guide!
Yoho National Park Facts
Yoho National Park is full of wonders! You don’t have to take our word for it. Read these Yoho National Park facts, and decide for yourself if this national park is worth the hype.
Yoho National Park is 507 square miles and is located in southeast British Columbia—east of Banff National Park.
Yoho is Canada’s second recognized national park after Banff National Park.
Yoho National Park sits to the west of the Continental Divide, receiving more rain than the east.
The national park is home to numerous natural spectacles, including Wapta Falls, Hoodoos, Emerald Lake, Takakkaw Falls and Lower Spiral Tunnel Viewpoint.
Yoho has 61 lakes and ponds and 28 mountain peaks that reach nearly 10,000 feet.
Yoho is the perfect habitat for black and grizzly bears, wolves, badgers, moose, lynx, pika, cougars, wolverines, marmots, mountain goats and elk.
Photo Credit: Instagram User @germainzlx
Best Yoho National Park RV Parks and Campgrounds
Time to find your home away from home! Yoho National Park has four campgrounds and 150 campsites, many that are RV-accessible, during peak season—just keep in mind that Yoho’s campgrounds are open mid-May to mid-October.
Kicking Horse Campground
Amenities: Just a short drive from Takakkaw Falls, Kicking Horse Campground is a secluded RV campground in Yoho National Park. The campground sits along Kicking Horse River and Yoho River, and it has access to several hiking trails. The campground has flush toilets, an RV dump station and is accessible. You must purchase a fire pit permit to establish a fire.
Capacity: 88 unserviced campsites
More information: Kicking Horse Campground
Amenities: Kick your feet up at Monarch Campground! Monarch is a bare-bones camping experience—you won’t find flush toilets or hot showers here, but you will find great hiking and biking opportunities. Monarch Campground is accessible to smaller RVs and has an RV dump station.
Capacity: 44 unserviced campsites
More information: Monarch Campground
Hoodoo Creek Campground
Amenities: Hoodoo Creek Campground sits along the roaring Hoodoo Creek and nearby Yoho’s greatest geological wonder, Leanchoil Hoodoos. The campground itself has dry toilets, a kitchen shelter and is accessible. Hoodoo Creek Campground is accessible to small RVs but does not have an RV dump station.
Capacity: 30 unserviced campsites
More information: Hoodoo Creek Campground
Best Time to Visit Yoho National Park for RV Camping
There is no wrong time to visit Yoho; after all, the park is open year-round. But there are preferable times to visit Yoho National Park based on the activities you want to do. Keep reading to learn more about Yoho’s dynamic weather patterns.
Pack a few extra layers if you’re planning a December, January or February trip—these months are coldest. How cold? December has an average temperature of 23°F.
The Trans-Canada Highway bisects Yoho National Park. Highway closures are not uncommon during winter due to avalanches, so check traffic reports before hitting the road and map out alternative routes. Also, winter tires are required from October 1 to March 31.
If you can bear the biting cold, there are plenty of winter sports to keep you busy. Skiing and snowshoeing are popular activities in the Canada Rockies as Yoho’s trails are maintained by Kicking Horse Ski Club and Emerald Sports. There is plenty of fresh powder, so you don’t have to worry about colliding with unsuspecting visitors in the backcountry.
Spring is short in Yoho National Park—March to May—but the long days of sunlight more than make up for the short season.
Yoho’s spring is the perfect dynamic environment. Temperatures steadily warm to the mid-40s from March to May, with lows reaching the single digits. Enjoy a morning ski run with friends, then return to lower elevations for a scenic day hike around Emerald Lake.
Also, male bears emerge from hibernation in March and April, roaming valley bottoms. Keep your distance and bear spray readily available—bears also make an appearance on low-elevation ski trails and at roadsides.
Yoho National Park’s summer is shorter than other national parks; however, it still draws a crowd. Many of Yoho’s popular attractions are open, including Takakkaw Falls, which opens mid-June.
Temperatures typically do not exceed the high-50s. But don’t let summer highs influence your packing decisions as temperatures can still dip below freezing at higher elevations and night. Pack an abundance of layers and sun protection to stay comfortable.
In addition to flocking crowds, bears and elk come out of hibernation. Keep your distance! Summer is the calving season for female elk, and they can become aggressive. Keep a vigilant eye and ear on the trails. While bears are typically gorging on berries to prepare for winter, they too can be aggressive.
Fall crowds in Yoho are not as abundant, making it the perfect season for visitors who don’t mind the steadily decreasing temperatures. September highs hold steady at the mid-40s; however, temperatures drop below freezing as October and November progress.
Wildlife watching is a popular activity; however, you must be careful and adhere to the park’s safety precautions. Again, be wary of your surroundings. Bears are preparing for winter, and male elk are rutting; both are extremely dangerous. Don’t feed either animal, keep a safe distance, and don’t provoke either. After all, you are a visitor in their home.
Things to Do in Yoho National Park
Adventure awaits at Yoho, but don’t get caught without a plan; plan your visit with this list of things to do in Yoho National Park!
Investigate the Burgess Shale fossils. For amateur archeologists, the Burgess Shale fossils are a once-in-a-lifetime experience as they are the oldest and most complex fossils in the world! Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Burgess Shale fossils are over five million years old and are well preserved. Don’t take our word for it—get down and dirty, and check out the Burgess Shale fossils on your Yoho National Park RV camping trip.
Journey to Paget Lookout on a guided conservation hike. Tighten your laces and fill your CamelBak—the Paget Lookout hike is not for the light-hearted. The 8-hour guided hike ascends 1,706 feet or the equivalent of 122 flights of stairs! This challenging, backcountry trek gives way to sweeping views of the Continental Divide and peaks in the Bow and Kicking Horse Valleys.
Take a scenic drive on the Yoho Valley Road. Enjoy Yoho National Park from the comfort of your RV. Yoho Valley Road winds through the national park, with landmarks dotting the road. Stop at Canada’s second tallest waterfall, Takakkaw Falls. Standing at 833 feet, “takakkaw” means “wonderful” in Cree, and we must say, this tourist attraction is a wonderful sight to see.
Picnic on Emerald Lake. Emerald Lake is Yoho National Park’s largest lake and premier tourist attraction. Wapta Mountain, Mount Burgess and President Range encompass the turquoise lake, creating a secluded atmosphere, but there’s much to do at Emerald Lake. A three-mile hiking trail encircles the lake, and canoe rentals are available during summer.
The Yoho National Park tour doesn’t stop here. Keep reading to learn insider tips on visiting Yoho National Park.
Tips on Visiting Yoho National Park
Wait one second, happy camper, don’t get ahead of yourself! Before you hit the road, check out these tips on visiting Yoho National Park.
Check for seasonal closures. Avoid disappointment—review Yoho’s seasonal closures before you arrive at the national park. Yoho Valley Road, which leads to several popular tourist sites and campgrounds, is open late June to mid-October. And high alpine hikes close for several months due to avalanche risks.
Reserve your campsite. Mid-June through mid-September is Yoho’s busy tourist season. Reserve your Yoho National Park RV campsite before you hit the road to ensure you have a safe place to set up camp. For first-come, first-served campsites, plan to arrive early and have a back-up plan.
Check the avalanche forecast. There are plenty of safe activities that you can do with the family, but you don’t have to wander far to encounter avalanche terrain. Familiarize yourself with common avalanche warning signs, and equip yourself with the survival knowledge and tools in the event of an avalanche. And most importantly, if you are in doubt, visit a visitor center for safer travel routes or activities.
Leave a detailed itinerary with a friend. We’d all like to think that we’re hiking experts, but it only takes one wrong turn to become lost. Cell coverage is spotty, and the backcountry can be unforgiving. Tell a trusted friend your destination, anticipated path and estimated timeframe.
Don’t feed the wildlife. A fed animal is a dead animal. Feeding animals encourages animals to rely on humans for sustenance, forgetting their foraging abilities. Animals fed from cars may also congregate near roadways, increasing the likelihood of car collisions. Secure your food and garbage in bear-proof bins to protect the wildlife.
RV Rental for Yoho National Park
Campsite reservation: check! Camping itinerary: got it! RV camper: working on it?
Cruise America is your one-stop-shop for an RV rental in Yoho National Park. Every RV has air conditioning, a freshwater toilet, a gas cooktop, a generator, a refrigerator, a microwave and a shower.
The RV rentals are also pet-friendly, and they allow towing. In the end, your RV will be equipped with all the amenities you need for your Yoho RV adventure!
Rent your RV today with Cruise America and plan your trip to Yoho National Park!