Three generations of families have looked after Lake O’Hara Lodge, which might be why we think of ourselves as stewards of this beautiful place, and why we take environmental conservation and preservation so seriously.
This legacy and mindset impacts every decision we make with the goal of ensuring that the pristine beauty of Lake O’Hara will be enjoyed by guests for generations to come. For example we conserve water through the use of vacuum toilets, we operate an advanced membrane bioreactor tertiary wastewater treatment facility and an efficient hot water pre-warming system utilizing waste heat from our generators.
Environmental thinking is prevalent throughout our operation. It is challenging at times to work with such a historic property however we continually explore opportunities which will help us to lessen our footprint.
Here are just a few of the other ways we go about protecting nature and minimizing our environmental footprint:
- Utilize native plants and shrubs saved from the road allowance, to reclaim disturbed areas.
- Avoid phosphorus based laundry soaps and dishwashing soaps which can be so hard on aquatic environments.
- Offer financial support to the Lake O’Hara Trails Club, which seeks to maintain the area trails and help hikers enjoy the trails responsibly.
- Make use of LED technology in our low level path lighting as well as in our back areas of the lodge.
- Purchase seasonal produce from local producers, minimizing the environmental costs of food transportation in addition to supporting our local economy.
- Support our regional vineyards, which allows us to boast a wine list composed exclusively of award-winning British Columbia wines.
- Have an extensive in-house recycling program for paper, glass, tin and plastic products to ensure nothing is wasted.
- Support local charities through both in-kind and financial contributions.
- Contributing financial and in-kind support for ongoing environmental research activities in conjunction with various academic and government institutions.
- Utilize the latest membrane technology to treat our wastewater.
When things go wrong in the backcountry, you can’t just run to the hardware store or have the local handyman swing by. Instead we try to help the area stakeholders out when we can. We share the stewardship of the area with the Lake O’Hara Trails Club, Alpine Club of Canada and Parks Canada and help each other out by sharing firewood, road maintenance and lending extra hands when needed. In 2013 we partnered with this group to construct the beautiful and welcoming Bus Kiosk at the bottom of the O’Hara road. We are proud of our partnerships with the area stakeholders.