Hot Creek Geological Site

Eastern Sierra

For a graphic view of the area’s geothermal power, journey south of Mammoth Lakes to where chilly Mammoth Creek blends with hot springs and continues its journey as Hot Creek. This small gorge forms a series of steaming, bubbling cauldrons, with water shimmering in shades of blue and green reminiscent of the tropics. The site is a result of a 700,000 year old volcanic explosion and is where the earth releases internal pressure.

Signs at the location warn of scalding water, arsenic in the water, sporadic high pollution and unpredictable geyser eruption, so understandably swimming is banned. To reach the site, turn off Hwy 395 about 5 miles south of Mammoth Lakes and follow signs to the Hot Creek Fish Hatchery. From here it’s another 2 miles on gravel road to the parking area, and a short hike down to the canyon and creek. Pets must be kept on a leash. Vault restroom in parking lot.

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