Near the entrance of Devils Postpile National Monument, and just half a mile from the Postpile formation, visitors can stay at a 21-site campground along the Middle Fork San Joaquin River. With sites backing up against a pine-covered ridge, Devils Postpile provides a fine camping experience in the Eastern Sierra near Mammoth Lakes with ample day hiking opportunities.
The 21 sites at Devils Postpile National Monument Campground are spread out on two loops. The A loop has the majority of the sites and backs up against the forest. The B loop is more of a cul-de-sac, with sites close to the Middle Fork San Joaquin River. The B loop is designed for walk-ins or people tent camping from cars. Don’t plan to park more than 20 feet of vehicles at each of these sites (which could be two small cars). Sites on the A loop have more room for vehicles and some accommodate trailers. The road to Devils Postpile National Monument has narrow and winding, so getting to the campground in an RV would be a challenge.
Sites are designed for up to six people and two vehicles. Most sites have good spots for a tent or two and others have room for even more. The campground offers a medium amount of privacy if all the sites are full.
Each campsite has a picnic table, a fire ring with built in grills, and a food storage locker. Place all your food and scented items in the storage locker and practice bear safety. Bears do visit this campground, and you may also see deer and squirrels.
Sites are $20 per night (as of 2015) for up to six people and two vehicles (there is no additional fee for a second vehicle). The sites are first-come first-serves (no reservations) with a 14-night limit. Additional campgrounds are located in the surrounding national forest. Quiet hours are 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. and checkout is by noon. Pets are allowed in the campground, but should be on leashes when outside of tents and vehicles.
Bring your own firewood as none is for sale at the campground. Collecting downed and dead wood is permitted (for use in the campground). The bathrooms have flush toilets and there are spigots for potable water. Garbage and recycling are collected in the campground.
To get to the campground: Take Route 395 to Route 203 and drive 3.6 miles to Mammoth Lakes. Turn right onto Minaret Road toward Mammoth Mountain. Pass the ski resort after another 4 miles (those not staying at the campground should park here to take the shuttle to Devils Postpile National Monument). In another 1.4 miles, pass through Minaret Vista Entrance Station where a $10 fee is charged for each vehicle.
Drive 6.7 miles over the ridge and down toward Reds Meadow. Turn right, following signs for Devils Postpile National Monument and drive the final 0.3 miles to Devils Postpile. You will come to a loop with parking at the end of the road. The ranger station is straight ahead and the trail to Devils Postpile is to the left. The entrance to the campground is on the right. Turn into the campground and you will quickly reach the A loop of the compact campground.
Campground address: Minaret Summit Road, Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546
Campground coordinates: 37.6306, -119.085 (37° 37′ 50.16″N 119° 05′ 05.99″W)
Use the map below to create your own directions:
This 1 to 1.35-mile hike visits the columnar basalt cliff that Devils Postpile National Monument is named after, with top-down and bottom-up views of the impressive formation.
This hike of 5.1 miles or more passes the Devils Postpile Formation to reach an attractive 101-foot waterfall with rainbows in its mist.
This 3-mile hike from Devils Postpile National Monument connects with Pacific Crest Trail to reach the base of a waterfall that tumbles and slides down a rocky slope.
This 8.5-mile hike crosses a picturesque canyon and passes a plunging cascade to visit a mountain lake in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest near Mammoth Lakes.
This hike of around 15 miles round trip ventures above Shadow Lake along a creek to a beautiful lake below Mount Ritter and Banner Peak in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest near Mammoth Lakes. Ediza Lake is an excellent destination for backpackers.
This beautiful lake along John Muir Trail is 8.55 miles from the trailhead at Agnew Meadows, making it an ideal lake to visit on a backpacking loop.
|Thousand Island Lake|
This exceptional lake is a true gem of the Sierra and is 8.75 miles from the trailhead at Agnew Meadows via High Trail, a section of Pacific Crest Trail, making it a great destination for an overnight trek.
|Ediza Lake – Thousand Island Lake Loop|
This multi-day backpacking loop of around 25 miles incorporates sections of John Muir Trail and Pacific Crest Trail to visit a series of stunning Sierra lakes in the Ansel Adams Wilderness of Inyo National Forest.
|More trails in the Sierra Nevada Mountains|
Explore other destinations in Ansel Adams Wilderness and the rest of the range.