This past summer my best friend, Autumn, and I had the exciting opportunity to visit Lake O’Hara.
It is quite difficult to get into Lake O’Hara as only a limited number of people per day at certain times of the year are allowed in. On April 20 at 8 am my mom had me up trying to get our tickets, but the reservations filled up pretty much right away. Luckily, I was able to get her a ticket as she was the one who really wanted to go. After she went and I heard all about it and I knew I had to go. I kept checking the website and luckily someone cancelled and I was able to get two tickets for Autumn and I.
According to one news article, ” About 17,000 people log on to the Parks Canada website each spring in an attempt to snag tickets on the limited bus service to Lake O’Hara in Yoho National Park. About 1,000 succeed” (source: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/lake-ohara-bookings-bus-parks-canada-1.4634797).
Lake O’Hara was so magical, words and pictures do not do it justice. It is a quiet unlike I have never heard before. It was not crowded at all as compared to other hiking trails. There are different hikes and scrambles you can do, but Autumn and I did the walk around the lake. Then we stopped in at the little store and had their world famous carrot cake (it was SOOOOO good!).
If you cannot get tickets to take the bus in you are allowed to hike in, but it is 11km one way and that’s before you even explore around the lake or anything like that. I would recommend trying to get bus tickets as the hike in looks quite boring and long, but it’s totally up to you.
My tips for going to Lake O’Hara:
- If you don’t get tickets right away, don’t worry keep checking back as people do cancel
- Bring warm clothes (it was warm at my house, but FREEZING at the lake)
- Make sure to be early for the bus, they won’t wait for you
- Bring cash to buy carrot cake
- The bus ride is quite bumpy, so be prepared for that
- Check the times for when the bus leaves Lake O’Hara as you do not want to get stuck there
I REALLY hope to go back to Lake O’Hara this year and maybe it will be less cloudy.