Rainbow Falls Trail

Lake Mary, California 93546

Rainbow Falls Trail

Rainbow Falls Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"The panoramic views of peaks and the Minaret Range along the ridge and across the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River are some of the most spectacular you will see from a car in the Sierra. This stunning high-country hamlet is loaded with unique and remarkable attributes. The paved road access is a phenomenon in itself in the heart of this pristine backcountry, wedged in a glacial fold between the eastern and western slopes of the Sierra. Then there’s the geological wonder of the 60-foot-high hexagonal basalt lava columns—Devils Postpile—and the fact that dogs are just as welcome as hikers in the national monument. This is just a perk along the mostly level, dusty pumice trail leading to the main attraction, Rainbow Falls. Be aware that you share the trail with horses and pack animals."

More Rainbow Falls Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

"The Sierra Nevada is justly famed for its fancy work with rocks and water, but few examples are more wonderful than this natural stone cliff of remarkable mathematical regularity, and the graceful waterfall that lives just down the stream. The Sierra Nevada has many examples of the kind of geological phenomenon seen in Devils Postpile—lava flows of columnar basalt. What makes Devils Postpile stand out is that it is the most awesome, most sweeping example of its kind anywhere in the world, with the possible exception of Giants Causeway in Northern Ireland. Judging by all the accents you will hear on this trail, people really do come from all over the world to see it—so arrive early in the day."

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Trail Information

Lake Mary
Nearby City
477 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
4.5 hours
Summer, fall
7,575 feet
Trailhead Elevation
7,680 feet
Top Elevation
Inyo National Forest, Mammoth Ranger District
Local Contacts
USGS Mammoth Mountain, USGS Crystal Crag
Local Maps

Trail Log