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Devils Postpile National Monument, Mammoth Lakes

4.4
#1 of 8 in Nature in Mammoth Lakes
Geologic Formation Nature / Park
See rare geometrically shaped basalt formations and 30 m (100 ft) tall waterfalls at Devils Postpile National Monument, which is within the Ansel Adams Wilderness. The formations were created 100,000 years ago when lava was flowing and cooling down and glaciers eroded, polished, and fragmented the basalt into long, symmetrical columns. Reaching 18 m (60 ft) high and ranging from 61 cm (2 ft) to 1.1 m (3.5 ft) in diameter, the formations give an impression of tall posts stacked in a pile. At the park, you can hike, camp, fish and go horseback riding. Look for animals, such as black bears, coyotes, and mule deer. You can explore on 13 km (8 mi) of trails on your own or on a guided tour. To visit Devils Postpile National Monument and get the most from your holiday in Mammoth Lakes, create itinerary details personal to you using our Mammoth Lakes tour planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
748 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Nice walk to monument. Have to take shuttle to trailhead during summer because of numbers of people wishing to visit. Beautiful and breathtaking!  more »
  • I recommend hiking to Rainbow falls very long is easy. The basalt columns allow making pretty unusual photos.
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  • Its a little hike, but does take a toll for the non hiker. But, but it's totally worth the heavy panting. The area is beautiful, and the middle San Joaquin river flows right behind the DPP. We have a ...  more »
Google
  • You need more than one day trip for this monument. Beyond the science of this area, the scenes are truly amazing. Watching JMT adn PCT Hikers come into camp for supplies is so cool, and Rainbow Falls is a must see. Prepare for some hiking, but well worth every minute. Tip if you have your hiking legs on... get off at the first bus stop and walk all the way to Rainbow falls. You will have first half of the park all to yourself.
  • This remote National Monument can only be accessed in the summer by either hiking the JMT or by taking a shuttle from Mammoth. The Postpile itself is a rare formation with hexagonal-shaped rocks. Expect to spend a hour total on this hike. The other main site in the Monument is Rainbow Falls that is a 3 mile round trip hike from the shuttle stop.
  • Never got to see it, as I was expecting to be able to park at a trailhead somewhere and hike in and out. Nope. Park in a huge lot and wait to get on the next shuttle with dozens and dozens of other tourists. May work for plenty, but not my cup of tea.
  • If you're there you should go see it but honestly, it's not quite as amazing as you'd think from all the photos you see. The site isn't as large as you'd imagine and it's kind of tucked away. I'm sure there far more impressive and expansive basalt column outcrops elsewhere in the world - like Ireland for example. I think the hike to the top of the pile would be interesting but I didn't do it myself.
  • We're blessed to have National Monuments and this one is a must for any traveler in the area as it makes for a great day of learning and fun for the whole family. And while you're there be sure to continue on to Rainbow Falls for an amazing view and beautiful scenery along the way. Enjoy! S-

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