Northern California Nature August 10, 2018
This Incredibly Rare Landscape In Northern California Will Make You Do A Double-Take
The best thing about living in Northern California is experiencing the diversity of landscapes our region contains. Forests full of gargantuan trees, miles of pristine coastline, rolling hills and sweeping valleys—we truly have it all. However, our state is home to some of the weirdest landscapes and natural oddities you’ve ever seen as well. There’s one truly bizarre rock formation located near the town of Mammoth Lakes, hidden away in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. You’ll definitely want to make the trip to this one-of-a-kind landmark and natural wonder. Simply put, this is one of those things you have to see to believe!
There's no such thing as a dull landscape in Northern California. Especially when you take into consideration the fact that we are home to one of the strangest natural wonders on the planet: the weird and wacky landmark known as Devils Postpile.
This place is simply a must-see when you find yourself in the Mammoth Lakes area. Devils Postpile National Monument contains one of the most unique geological treasures you'll ever see, along with breathtaking mountain scenery and the delightful Rainbow Falls.
The natural landmark is usually open to visitors from June through mid-October, depending on the weather. The hike to Devils Postpile is short and sweet, at only a half-mile long. However, you can always extend the hike to reach the formation's summit and also see the nearby waterfall.
Prepare to be blown away by the sight of the landmark once you reach it. The first thing that will cross your mind is probably "What is it?" This natural wonder seems to be anything but natural.
Devils Postpile can best be described as resembling a tidy, man-made lumber pile....except it's definitely not man-made! These 60-foot-high basalt columns were originally formed as the result of a lava eruption in the valley 100,000 years ago.
Approximately 10,000 years ago, glaciers overrode the giant mass of lava and extracted one side of the postpile which exposed the wall of giant columns you see today.
You'll also notice that the columns have a distinct, nearly perfect hexagonal shape. This was the result of how the lava cooled. The lava's thickness caused it to cool slowly and evenly, which is why the columns are so long and so symmetrical. Nature is amazing, that's for sure!
Devils Postpile may be the main attraction in the park but you'll find that this region is full of wonders. All in all, there are eight miles of hiking trails which let you explore this fantastic area along with the nearby Ansel Adams Wilderness and San Joaquin River.
However, we definitely recommend making the 2.5-mile trek from the Ranger Station to the utterly magical Rainbow Falls. The sight of this breathtaking 101-foot waterfall is the perfect way to end your adventure at Devils Postpile National Monument.
Northern California is just full of surprises! This place looks unlike anything we’ve seen before. Be sure to check out our list of
11 Amazing Natural Wonders In Northern California Hiding In Plain Sight for awesome no-hike destinations!