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The Panum Crater should not be missed by anyone interested in geology. This spectacular young volcano looks ready to erupt at any moment. Panum Crater is the northernmost and youngest of the chain, about 600 years old. It is a classic example of the rhyolitic eruptions that occured in the area. You can circumnavigate the top rim by way of the Rim Trail which offers spectacular vistas of the Sierra Nevada and the entire Mono Basin. There is also a trail that climbs to the top of the plug dome. There is little shade, so be sure to bring water and sunscreen. During the summer, there are naturalist guided tours that last about an hour and a half. Take the short dirt road to Panum off Highway 120 east of Highway 395.
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Dirt road, off Highway 120, to Panum Craters

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