A sea of lava flows with scattered islands of cinder cones and sagebrush describes this "weird and scenic landscape" known as Craters of the Moon. Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve contains three major lava fields covering almost half a million acres. These remarkably well preserved volcanic features resulted from geologic events that appear to have happened yesterday and will likely continue tomorrow...
Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve is one of the best places in the world to see the awesome effects of volcanism. For 15,000 years, lava eruptions have created a landscape that has forced animals and plants to adapt, and people to endure or detour, and to ponder.
Established by Presidential proclamation in 1924, Craters of the Moon National Monument has been enlarged by additional proclamations. The expanded Monument and Preserve are co-managed by the National Park Service and the Bureau of Land Management.
The monument is part of the Snake River Plain, a volcanic terrain that spans all of southern Idaho. In places, this plain is 60 miles wide and drilling into it has shown its lava deposits to be over 10,000 feet deep in some locations. Eruptions that took place 2,000 years ago at Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve are the most recent volcanic activity to take place anywhere in this immense geographic area.
Today at Craters of the Moon, you can explore such features as cinder cones, spatter cones, lava tubes, and several types of lava flows. You can also have the unique opportunity to encounter the plants and animals associated with the varied lava habitats, enjoy hiking on a variety of trails, or enjoy the solitude and beauty of this incredible place.