Devils Postpile National Monument, Mammoth Lakes

4.4
#1 of 8 in Nature in Mammoth Lakes
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. Use our Mammoth Lakes road trip website to arrange your visit to Devils Postpile National Monument and other attractions in Mammoth Lakes.
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Devils Postpile National Monument Reviews
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  • A beautiful hike in combination with the Rainbow Falls. To run very well and is a great backdrop.
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  • My wife and I visited in mid October as part of a Fall Color Photo trip we do every few years along hwy 395. There are good hiking trails and I recommend you see the Postpile from below and then take ...  more »
  • Three words- stunning, go see! Good access for parking and walking. Easy walk to Postpile. A couple of other walks accessible from same site.  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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