Explore Mammoth Lakes - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Mammoth Lakes Map
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hiking
20 hours ago

Tough hike for me as a beginner, but worth it. Bring water shoes for lower falls area. The rocks are sharp if you want to take a break and swim.

We started at stop 6 and hiked to Rainbow Falls. Not much shade because there was a fire in the region years ago and trees are growing back. The walk was worth seeing the falls at the end and there really is a rainbow!

hiking
5 days ago

WRONG PHOTOS Hikers beware, the photos uploaded by Tim are wrong (probably by accident). The large waterfall you see in his pictures is actually Rainbow waterfall, which starts from the same trailhead but goes in the opposite direction toward Devil's Postpile and Rainbow waterfall. I'm not sure if any of his pictures actually depict this hike.

We got in past the station before 7, and it was worth it. We could explore at our own pace and brought the dog (we didn’t have a muzzle for the shuttle). The monument is so unique, super easy, and surrounded by great views.

FANTASTIC trail. Rating is accurate at difficult. Would recommend for backpackers to leave early in the morning because there are countless breathtaking panoramics of the Minarets and mountain range around each corner, so taking your time to stop and appreciate it was really something that I'm glad we did. The total hike time was over 6 hours, with a heavy backpack, and we actually had to camp about .5 mile from Thousand Island due to a late start, it getting dark, and being EXHAUSTED! Would have been much quicker without the backpack full and ready for a weekend of camping with a heavy tent. We passed a handful of people doing this trail as a day trail who were making great time if that's the route you're hoping to go. Again, would recommend to leave early even then! Luckily summer days are long and offer sunlight until late in the evening.
There is a parking lot at the trailhead with Agnew Meadows Campsite just up the road. You can also reach the trail head via shuttle ($9 round-trip) and walk a bit. I would recommend to drive your car down to save time and money. The line for the shuttle was long, the shuttle was crowded, and we were itching to get started much sooner than the shuttle allowed us to.
There is a bathroom at the trailhead. The High Trail via the PCT almost immediately starts at an incline, and then is primarily uphill for majority of the trail. There is a long, open (Sunny) stretch that is relatively flat, and about .5 mile that is slightly downhill, but that meant heading back uphill. Two sets of switchbacks. Both are a short distance, one near the beginning and the other almost at the end.
This was difficult but very rewarding. One of the prettiest trails with everything still in bloom. A lot of butterflies, and A LOT of mosquitos. Treat your clothes, take deet and a bug net. Even with deet and a bug net we were still eaten alive and spent most of our time in the tent. There was a bit of wind at the lake itself which meant relief from the mosquitos which was very welcome. Lots of fish jumping, and other travelers fishing!
Again, tough trail, but very worth it! Met a lot of nice PCTers. You definitely earn your views!

backpacking
9 days ago

FANTASTIC trail. Rating is accurate at difficult. Would recommend for backpackers to leave early in the morning because there are countless breathtaking panoramics of the Minarets and mountain range around each corner, so taking your time to stop and appreciate it was really something that I'm glad we did. The total hike time was over 6 hours, with a heavy backpack, and we actually had to camp about .5 mile from Thousand Island due to a late start, it getting dark, and being EXHAUSTED!
There is a parking lot at the trailhead with Agnew Meadows Campsite just up the road. You can also reach the trail head via shuttle ($9 round-trip) and walk a bit. I would recommend to drive your car down to save time and money. The line for the shuttle was long, the shuttle was crowded, and we were itching to get started much sooner than the shuttle allowed us to.
There is a bathroom at the trailhead. The High Trail via the PCT almost immediately starts at an incline, and then is primarily uphill for majority of the trail. There is a long, open (Sunny) stretch that is relatively flat, and about .5 mile that is slightly downhill, but that meant heading back uphill. Two sets of switchbacks. Both are a short distance, one near the beginning and the other almost at the end.
This was difficult but very rewarding. One of the prettiest trails with everything still in bloom. A lot of butterflies, and A LOT of mosquitos. Treat your clothes, take deet and a bug net. Even with deet and a bug net we were still eaten alive and spent most of our time in the tent. There was a bit of wind at the lake itself which meant relief from the mosquitos which was very welcome. Lots of fish jumping, and other travelers fishing!
Again, tough trail, but very worth it! Met a lot of nice PCTers. You definitely earn your views!

on Devils Postpile Loop

hiking
15 days ago

You won’t be able to drive to the trailhead. Take the shuttle at Mammoth Main base. $8 for the round trip. Bring your patience. Shuttle can take a while. Overall, really great hike! Not super crowded and a beautiful day.

15 days ago

Nice trail, pretty easy with a great payoff — Postpile!

This is a really fun afternoon. we started at stop 6 for devil's postpile. Did the postpile then go up top of it and there's a trail entrance for rainbow falls. as someone else noted it is a sandy walk and can take it's toll. the falls are cool. go to lower falls the trail isn't bad and the river and small falls are great. Then back to stop 10. it ends up in the 5ish mile range. Tiring due to elevation and sandy trail, but totally worth it. Bring water and bug spray and a hat.

We took the shuttle to stop 6, hiked to the bottom of the postpile (so unique!), then took the short loop to the top of the postpile (definitely a worthwhile perspective). We continued the trail to the aptly-named rainbow falls, and went an additional ~1/2 mi to the lower falls, where we found a lot of swimmers. On the way back, we hiked to shuttle stop 9, which shaved off a short distance. Fun and unique hike.

If you have time on your way to the Postpile, take an opportunity to see this fall. It’s a little way up the JMT and into the forest you go...lose your mind and find your soul. Cheers!

Summer months are hot up here so make sure you bring lots of water. It’s easy to get distracted and venture off trail since the infamous PCT and JMT run through here.

A simple walk through some beautiful forest!! Devil's Postpile was too cool with a nice little shaded area to eat lunch before the rest of the hike to Rainbow Falls. The trail is very sandy and therefore can tire you out a bit so just pace yourself because, although not difficult, we met with a few older folks on the trail that didn't find it to be so easy -- if that's the case for you there are two spots to cut the hike short and head up to Reds Meadow Resort, and you'll still see some amazing sights! Myself, my wife, my 12 year old daughter and 6 year old son did great but we were certainly tired at the end! Rainbow Falls is breathtaking, a great reward at the end of the hike! Just save your strength since you have to then hike back up and out 1.3 miles to the resort and/or shuttle.

backpacking
30 days ago

Gorgeous views and relentless climbing to reach the high Sierra backcountry, but absolutely worth the work. Parking is safe at the Rush Creek Trailhead near Silver Lake. Did this as a four day thru-hike to Tuolumne Meadows in June 2018, using the JMT/PCT over Donohue Pass. This was the most beautiful and committing backpack trip I've done, and is a must-do. Arrange for a ride back from T Meadows via YART, a private shuttle service or hitch a ride. This is a friendly area of California.

Beautiful in June! Shuttle drops you off at .4mi from Devil’s Postpile. After that, it’s another 2 mi to Rainbow Falls. While its kid-friendly, the trail isn’t stroller-friendly. A jogging stroller is fine if you are comfortable exercising with one. There are many sunny spots, so make sure you’ve got a hat.

This hike was short and sweet. It was a beautiful hike .

Tried to go today instead of boarding and the main road was closed :(

Started at Lake Mary campground and walked to Mammoth Pass Trailhead. Hiked through patches of snow on the way up. Not much shade on the way down to Red's Meadow Resort. Trail on the map looked like it went to Red's Meadow Campground but takes you more towards the resort. Went via the pack trail down to Rainbow Falls and the Lower Falls. Hiked up to Devil's Postpile and back to Red's Meadow Campground (Closed). There was luckily water at the Red's Meadow Resort that we could fill up from because it was very hot.

Breathtaking spot!
Awesome hike!
Highly recommend !!

backpacking
2 months ago

We stayed the night at Garnet lake VIA the JMT back in 2017. when we came up on Thousand Island and we knew we had to come back someday. We will be hiking back up from Silver lake this July. Can anyone tell us where is a good safe place to park for the trip? Thanks.

backpacking
4 months ago

The first time I did this hike, I was 10 years old and I never forgot it. It remains branded in my head. Now, I’m in my 50’s and its beauty hasn’t changed.

hiking
4 months ago

This is a fun, easy hike. The views and geology are really amazing. As you leave the ranger station, you walk past a beautiful meadow then along the San Joaquin River before arriving at the base of the basaltic columns of Devils Postpile. There is a trail that continues on towards Rainbow Falls. We chose, instead, to take the loop to the top of the columns. The views from the top are worth the few extra minutes. Enjoy!

Spent a rest day here. Beautiful area and great fishing.

Great easy hike for the family and kids. Great swim by the waterfall depending the on water level

backpacking
7 months ago

I’ve backpacked Thousand island lakes so many times it never gets old. The views and hike in and out are amazing.

Snow the day before made for an beautiful mid-October day hike, @ 19 miles via River Trail.

A Picture is worth a thousand words..but real life is priceless. Seeing pics of DPP does nothing for being there in real life. :)
Lots of trails to branch off and choose your route..but it all eventually heads back to the parking lot. Some hills...but most pretty easy to navigate. There are a few spots with steep steps.
Camp style bathrooms in parking lot. Road curvy & fairly narrow..suggest leaving the trailer at home.
Lots of great photo opps in road & hiking trail.

Enjoyed every step of this hike yesterday! We were not in great shape, and we took our time. We stopped often for breaks and picture ops. We took the High Trail in to 1000 Island Lake, which was approx 9 miles to the lake. Then we returned on the River Trail which was a mile shorter. Very happy we chose this route. Going in on the High Trail gave us plenty of beautiful scenery. Coming out on the River Trail was mostly easy descending with beautiful Fall colors and views of the River flowing over the rocks. It was a total of 17.5 miles for us. We were tired, so we didn't venture around the lake too much. We got an early 7 am start and returned to our vehicle at 5 pm. We are sore the next day, it was long hike. But I would say it's worth It! I would absolutely recommend this hike. And I would recommend doing the directional loop as we did. Happy Hiking!

hiking
9 months ago

Beautiful easy hike. The Postpile is fascinating and the hike to the falls is easy. Signage is excellent and the trail is dog friendly.

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