Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve

1 Visitor Center Rd.
Lee Vining, CA 93541- Map It
(760) 647-6331

AAA Editor Notes

Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve includes several areas around Mono Lake in the Mono Basin National Forest Scenic Area. The combined Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve and National Forest Scenic Area is a 48,000-acre tract that preserves outstanding natural and scenic resources, including tufa, a calcium-carbonate rock created by the interaction of freshwater springs under the lake with the alkaline lake water. The lowering of the lake level due to stream diversions has exposed unusual tower formations. The Mono Basin National Forest Scenic Area Visitor Center, .25 mi. n. of Lee Vining off US 395, houses interactive displays describing the lake’s ecology, geology and history as well as galleries with changing exhibits. Information about guided 90-minute interpretive tours departing from various locations in the reserve is available. Guided tours are available. Recreational activities are permitted. Picnicking is permitted.
Free. South Tufa Area $3; free (ages 0-15).
Hours: Reserve daily 24 hours. Scenic Area Visitor Center in Lee Vining open daily 8-5, mid-May to mid-Oct; Thurs.-Mon. 9-4:30, early Apr. to mid-May and mid-Oct. through Dec. 1. Guided tours daily at 10, 1 and 6, late June-Labor Day; Sat.-Sun. at 1, late May-Late June and day after Labor Day-Sept. 30.