Lake Emerald, located at Yoho National Park, is Canada’s peaceful and amazing freshwater lake.
In this article, let us introduce you to one of the must-visit lakes for everyone, which is located in Canada.
This astonishing lake is also considered the Yoho National Park’s largest one. It has got its mesmerizing greenish-blue color because of the existing glacier silt.
Also, some fine particles carry some amount of sunlight and disperse it within the lake. Due to this, amazing hues have caught people’s attention for years.
1. History of Lake Emerald
The lake was founded in the 1920s. It was reconstructed entirely in the 1980s. Tom Wilson was the first person to encounter the lake in the year 1882. He was astonished by its beauty and named it because of the unique color it produces when sunlight falls on it.
He described it as: “For a few moments, I sat [on] my horse and enjoyed the rare, peaceful beauty of the scene.”
Wilson was the one to give the lake its name. It got its name due to its unusual hue due to the reflection of the sunlight’s green spectrum by a unique type of rock present in it.
The Trans-Canada Highway with Emerald Lake is connected with the help of a 2 lane paved road.
The lake is surrounded by a 5.2 km (3.2 mi) hiking trail, where pedestrians and wheelchairs are allowed to use in the first half. Several other advanced hiking trails go in different directions up into the mountains.
The lake Emerald is surrounded by some of the places of major importance, including forests and high mountain ranges.
The railway and timber town of Golden BC at the lake is situated nearby that is outside the Park boundaries.
It is located in the low valley of the Columbia River headwaters, about 30 miles away to the west, where several lodges exist.
Field, a small historic railroad community in Yoho Park, is close to the highway exit for Emerald Lake. It has a sizable visitor center run by the park.
The well-known resort town of Banff is located on the southeast edge of that Park. It is about 60 km (40 miles) from the east of Lake Louise.
Lake Louise is located about 30 km (20 miles) from Lake Emerald in the nearby Banff National Park. It is also surrounded by the President Range mountains, with many high peaks and forested areas.
A luxurious lodge or hotel called Emerald Lake Lodge is situated on a peninsula that projects into the lake. The setting is reminiscent of the inside of a snow globe with Emerald Lake Lodge in the middle of the lake.
2.1 Flora and Fauna
Park Law takes the responsibility of protecting the wild animals in this area. It is a habitat of most of the black bears. These animals co-exist very well with humans.
The lake does not encourage hunting, whereas fishing can be done only with proper permission.
It has a unique flora due to its high altitude above sea level, frequent summer rains, and huge winter snowfalls. Trees like the western red cedar, western yew, western white pine, and western hemlock are found in this region.
They are the trees that are more typical of the wet interior forests of The British. An abundant amount of wildflowers are produced here during the middle of the year.
3. Parking Facilities
Many vehicle parking and RV parks are widely available in the area, especially during summer. Hotel and campground bookings are highly recommended during the time period from the start of June to September end.
Making these bookings in advance is good and safe and strongly suggested. Emerald Lake’s one public parking lot fills up quite quickly. Parking can be somewhat of a challenge during the afternoon time.
The parking lot gets filled during mid-day, and parking can also be done on the road that ascends to the lake. A kilometer or so before the lake, there is a private parking area for the Emerald Lake Lodge.
You can use a phone to call the lodge and ask for a pickup at the lodge’s parking lot. You would find it so difficult to find a more breathtaking setting to kayak across as you survey the mountains and forests that surround Emerald Lake.
4. Climate Near Lake Emerald
Brief snowstorms that normally melt in a few days can be seen at the valley level in June or September. It is usually due to the latitude of 53 degrees and the high altitude. The average daytime temperature in June or September is between 20 C / 70 F; in July and August, it can get as high as 33 C / 90 F.
Winter temperatures from December to March are always below freezing, averaging -15 C / 0 F and sometimes down to -30 C / -30 F.
During winter, Snowfall is typically significant, remaining at the lake level for at least one meter. It attains up to a height of at least 10 meters on the mountain peaks. The Emerald Lake Lodge offers canoe rentals throughout the summer.
The lake is mostly frozen from November until May because it is located at a slightly high altitude. The powdered granite left over from the glaciers, which reflects the blue-green spectrum of sunlight, gives the lake its bright green color.
The color varies from lake to lake, month to month, and even week to week, depending on the type of rock and how much of it is present in the water.
5. Management of the Lake Emerald Park
As a rule, private or commercial land ownership is not permitted within the borders of Canada’s national parks, and Parks Canada closely regulates all development for environmental preservation.
They rarely grant development permissions, which is done only after thorough assessment and consultation by the government. The business leases the property it is on from Parks Canada.
Most enterprises in the national parks were created decades ago, and it is quite uncommon for them to receive current approval. The Canadian Rockies National Parks have a rigorous “need-to-reside” regulation; to live there, a person must either be employed or have a company.
6. When to Visit Lake Emerald?
There is no such thing as seasonal closures on Lake Emerald Road so that the lake can be accessed anytime. Also, it is not difficult to visit it as it is just a few kilometers from the TransCanada highway.
Most travelers prefer to plan their trip to Lake Emerald during the summer, as these months are the most popular. The year’s second half is roughly when Lake Emerald is still frozen. Plan your trip for mid-year if you want to see the lake unfrozen at its most bright color.
Lake Emerald’s color becomes less intense and vibrant as the season progresses because the rock flour from the glacial melt reaches the bottom of the lake.
In addition to the season, sunlight greatly impacts the vibrance of the lake. Therefore, to experience the lake’s peak color, go there on a sunny day. The most lovely times to visit Lake Emerald in the summer are early in the morning, close to sunrise, or in the late afternoon, close to sunset.
You must visit the lake in the summer to view the color at its brightest because the lake reflects light in a beautiful color due to the fine rock flour that melting glaciers high above the lake have dumped into the water.
7. What to Do in Lake Emerald?
There are several activities you may perform in the lake. Hiking along the shoreline and a canoe across the lake are some of the most well-known and enjoyable activities you should try at least once.
Three persons are allowed per canoe; rentals are priced by the hour. Most people have enough time—an hour—to paddle to the lake’s center and take a few pictures along the way. Plan on spending about two hours paddling the length of the lake.
Cross-country skiing is popular and well-known around the lake in the winter. Due to the occasional freezing of the lake, ice skating is not possible in the lake. Snowfall is abundant here from December through March.
Even when the lake does freeze over, it is nearly impossible to ice skate due to the high snow levels. If backcountry skiing is something you’re interested in, the Emerald Lake Slide Path is one of the best places to go.
8. Why Should We Visit the Lake?
This lake is definitely recommended as a spot to enjoy your holidays more peacefully and entertainingly, especially to make your summer awesome.
It is a peaceful lake nestled in the mountains and surrounded by lush, green forest, so this would be a great place for your relaxation by coming out from your daily busy schedule.
The mesmerizing color of the lake, along with its spectacular landscape, leaves you speechless. A 5.2 km walk around the lake would be an extremely refreshing activity, and it would serve as a wonderful family time during weekends or long holidays.
Spending some time in the forest is a great activity as the lake has a small microclimate due to the presence of a rainforest on the coast.
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