Fossil Falls is a unique geological basalt rock formation in the Coso Range of eastern California. Ancient volcanic activity, along with glacier melt water from the nearby Sierra Nevada mountains, played a role in its creation. Fossil Falls is located on the east side of US 395 at the Cinder Road exit, near a large red cinder cone, named Red Hill. The trailhead is well posted, easily accessible, and the trail is no more than a half mile round trip. These falls are now dry offering opportunity for artifacts to be discovered.
Fossil Falls was placed on the National Register of Historical Places, and is listed as an area of Critical Environmental Concern by the US Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management. Native American artifacts and shards of obsidian may be found at the site but may not be removed from the area. Native Americans would camp near Fossil Falls and carve obsidian from the nearby Coso Mountains into sharp tools and other objects. Additional information is available from the Bureau of Land Management.
Continue exploring California’s wilderness with the XplorMor Team through expedition photographs and insights shared in Beaches and Sunsets, Bodie Ghost Town, Central Coast & Big Sur, Death Valley, Inyo National Forest, Los Padres National Forest, Mono Lake, Sequoia National Park and the Ojai Valley.