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Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities

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Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Mammoth Mountain has a 11,053 foot summit, and 3,500 acres of rideable terrain. It is the only resort in North America to offer three different-sized halfpipes: Mini Pipe, Super Pipe, and Super Duper Pipe, (Olympic-size). Top-of-the-line pipe cutting snowcats, highly trained staff, consistent snow, sunny days and a long spring are reasons why the world's best pipe riders return to train year after year at Mammoth Mountain. Mammoth is known for its mammoth skiing and snowboarding terrains and abundant snowfall. There are 34 lifts, two aerial gondolas and miles of groomed trails for novices and expert skiers and snowboards. Snowboarding began in the Eastern Sierra in the mid-1980s and was one of the proving grounds of the sport's first pioneers. Since then, Mammoth and June Mountains have become top-rated ski resorts for snowboarding in the world. World-class mountains with expansive challenging terrain and outstanding terrain parks have created a paradise where even newcomers to the sport fall in love with the slopes.

Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Snow Boarding
An average of over 400 inches of snow is caused by weather patterns from the Pacific that form over the Sierra. Mammoth Mountain is traditionally among the first ski areas to open and sometimes operates as late as the Fourth of July. There are many different types of skiing. Alpine skiing is also called downhill skiing. Freestyle skiing is the type of skiing with which tricks are usually associated. The skis used are generally of a twin tip design, which allow the rider to ride switch (backwards) more easily. Tricks are generally spins and flips that can be conjoined with a grabbing of the ski to improve the image of the trick. Alpine skiing and Freestyle skiing are just two great ways to ski in Mammoth.

The spring brings Mammoth's West Coast Invitational and Orange Masters. The biggest names in skiing and snowboarding migrate to Mammoth for two back-to-back West Coast Invitational (WCI) events and the Orange Masters for skiers. The Who's Who of snowboarding and skiing are here. It's an opportunity for pro snowboards and amateurs to unite. The excitement mounts as winter athletes speculate on who will be invited to the next WCI. Spring Fest at Mammoth lets you enjoy longer days and warmer weather with great deals, exclusive events, concerts, live music on-snow demos and more.

During your stay with us receive discounts from Performance Athletics (1 block away) for your snow gear ranging from snowboards, snowshoes and clothing. Kittridge Sports is our recommendation for snow ski rentals or purchases.


Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Cross Country Skiing
The first choice one needs to make is what type of ski to use. Skis range from light racing "toothpicks" that are 40 mm wide at the tip with little or no sidecut to telemark skis as wide as any alpine ski with the sidecut to match. There are also specialty skis for skate skiing that are less than 40 mm at the tip, generally wider in the middle, and sized to the height of the skier. Coupled with poles that come up to ones ears, these skis allow rapid travel, but are not suitable for anything but the firm, smooth surfaces generally found only at groomed cross country centers. Skate skiing, as the name implies, uses a skating motion to go forward, but also requires a level of fitness, balance and technique not possessed by most beginners. The following discussion thus assumes that one will be skiing with diagonal stride or "classic" technique.

For classic skiing there is the choice of waxable or waxless skis. Waxable skis rely on a properly chosen wax to provide enough grip to propel you forward and to climb hills; and a perfectly waxed ski will outperform a waxless ski under nearly every condition. By contrast, a waxless ski, which uses a pattern on the base to provide grip, will provide consistent performance with little effort required to gauge both the temperature and the condition of the snow. Most learners start out on a touring ski that is 55-60 mm wide at the tip with moderate sidecut. This size ski with a waxless base is the most commonly rented ski, and is a good choice for a first purchase as well. This "plain vanilla" model will work well in set track at a groomed center, on an ungroomed golf course, and on most moderate backcountry trails. Later one can specialize, whether in the direction of performance racing skis or heavy-duty backcountry skis. Or both directions - remember that promised cellar full of skis.

Modern skis are made of fiberglass and have a double camber construction. There is first of all the "tip to tail" camber that spreads a skier's weight evenly along the length of the ski. Secondly, there is a camber in the middle portion of the ski that ideally keeps the "wax pocket" or "kick zone" less in contact with the snow except when one "kicks" to get grip. This double camber enhances performance, but requires careful sizing with regard to both length and flex so that the user can actually cause the center of the ski to make sufficient contact with the snow to obtain good grip. Renting for the first few times allows one to feel that a particular ski is "right", and many ski shops will apply some or all of the rental fees towards an eventual purchase.

Norwegian origins

Mammoth has some of the most pristine cross-country skiing in the World. Cross country skiing is the oldest type of skiing. It emerged from a need to travel over snow-covered terrain and developed as a sport at the end of the 19th century.

For centuries in the snow-covered North, skis were required to chase game and gather firewood in winter time. With long distances between the small, isolated communities and hard, snowy winters, skiing also became important as means of keeping in social contact. The word "ski" is a Norwegian word which comes from the Old Norse word "skid", a split length of wood. Cross-country skiing originated in prehistoric times. It was still widely practiced in the 19th century as a way of moving about in the winter. Elk, deer and other animals were hunted by skiing.

Earliest form

Different types of skis emerged at various regions at about the same time. One type had a horizontal toe-piece binding. The modern ski bindings are based on the Fennoscandian model of the 19th century. The East Siberian type was a thin board with a vertical four-hole binding. Sometimes it was covered with fur. The Lapps used a horizontal stem-hole binding. Present-day cross country skis were developed from the type used by the Lapps.

First competition

Norwegian army units were skiing for sport (and prizes) in the 18th century. Skiing for sport appeared in Norway in the mid 19th century; the first race on record is 1842.The famous Holmenkollen ski festival started in 1892, with the focus initially on the Nordic combined event. However in 1901, a separate cross country race was added to the festival.

Scandinavian dominance

The men's event debuted at the first Winter Olympic Games in Chamonix in 1924 and the women's event debuted at the 1952 Oslo Games. The sport has traditionally been dominated by the Nordic countries.

Nowadays many people in countries with strong cross-country skiing traditions have used skis to get from one place to another. There are over 40 Kilometers of groomed ski trails and skating tracks to try. If that is not enough there are plenty of ungroomed blue-diamond trails to escape from it all and take in the unparalleled views of the high Sierras. Cross-country skiing is both easy and accessible. Between the Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center and the Mammoth Lakes Nordic Trail System, there are miles of trails for outdoor fun! Recreational cross-country skiing is most frequently known as touring. Some skiers stay out for extended periods using tents and equipment similar to hikers, whereas others take relatively short trips from ski resorts. Today, there are several types of cross-country competitive events, involving races of various types and lengths, as well as biathlon, involving a combination of cross-country skiing and target shooting with a rifle.


Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Snow Mobiling
Have you ever been snowmobiling? Well now is your chance. For those of you who enjoy snowmobiling the opportunities are endless with mountain terrains that stretch as far as the eye can see. There are over 100 miles of groomed snowmobiling trails leading to thousands of acres of ungroomed snowmobile play areas that are maintained by the Forest Service. Snowmobiles were originally intended as a winter utility vehicle to be used where other vehicles cannot go. Hunters and workers who transported material across snow-covered land, frozen lakes and rivers, put them to good use. In the late 20th century, they started being put to use for recreational purposes as well. People who ride them commonly are known as snowmobilers.

The origin of the snowmobile is not the work of any one inventor but more a process of advances in engines for the propulsion of vehicles and supporting devices over snow. It parallels the development of the automobile and later aviation, often inventors using the same components for a different use.

The challenges of transporting people and their possessions cross-country during the winter season drove the invention of the snowmobile, an all-terrain vehicle specifically designed for travel across deep snow where other vehicles floundered. During the 20th century, rapidly evolving designs produced machines that were most commonly two-person tracked vehicles powered by gas engines that enabled them to tow a sled or travel, initially at low-to-moderate speeds, depending on snow conditions, terrain and the presence of obstacles protruding above the snow, including brush and trees. Originally utility vehicles, many manufacturers now provide a full range of recreational. special-purpose, and competition versions. Where early designs had 10 horsepower (7.5 kW) two-stroke engines, there has been a move toward newer style 2-stroke and 4-stroke gas engines, some with over 150 hp (110 kW).

The contemporary types of recreational riding forms are known as snowcross/racing, trail riding, freestyle, mountain climbing, boondocking, carving, ditchbanging and grass drags. Summertime activities for snowmobile enthusiasts include drag racing on grass, asphalt strips, or even across water. The Inyo National Forest has a wide winter trail system integrated into the surrounding mountains, forests and meadows. Blue diamonds mark ideal terrain for ski touring. Try your hand at the Mammoth Winter Biathlon held every March. This race is designed for both the beginner and the experienced biathlete. The biathlon takes place in the beautiful upper Lakes Basin at Tamarack Lodge and Cross Country Ski Center and starts and finishes at 8,800 feet. Destinations include Inyo Craters, Obsidian Dome and Hot Creek.

Mammoth Snowmobile Adventures is the perfect outfitter for first-timers or seasoned experts. Experienced guides and top-of-the-line equipment grant you access to California's greatest playground including: thousands of acres of trails, pristine backcountry, spacious meadows, historic landmarks and lush pine forests.

Snowmobiling in the High Sierra's offers endless miles of exploration. Are you ready to explore?<>


Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Remember being a kid and building a snowman and sledding how much fun it was? Well experience that fun carefree feeling all over again. Build that snowman, make those snow angels and have fun sledding. There are hillsides, slopes and trails that beckon you to laugh, scream and be that kid all over again. The generic U.S. term sledding refers to traveling down a snowy hill using a wooden slat. The activity has been known to exist as a fringe recreational activity far into the distant murky past in toboggan-type sleds which seasonally supplant the ubiquitous cart, wheelbarrow, and small hand-pulled wagon for winter work needs in the agrarian societies of the day, or winter yard work even today. A sled, sleigh, or sledge, as a work vehicle, is far more efficient and easier to motivate in ice and snow covered terrain than wheeled vehicles, including even the simple wheelbarrow. Wheels simply pile up snow in front of themselves in the direction of travel and create a great deal of rolling friction which must be overcome to move a load of firewood or fodder for the cattle.

Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Modern sledding began in St Moritz during the early 1870s when British visitors with more time than activities began to experiment and play around with boys' delivery sleds (much like the first picture) for recreation at the dawn of winter resorting in winter climes. Soon they were brainstorming on how to steer the old-fashioned flat-bottomed toboggans (toboggans coming from the words to and bargain. These sleds were created after citizens of St. Moritz would bargain over lumber to create sleds.) typical of the time and added runners whilst terrorizing the pedestrians as they used the narrow lanes and streets of the picturesque town as a run and subsequently took to racing.

The first ride down a hill on a sled is the most important, but most also the most difficult, because it determines the path of the sled for further runs down the hill. It is essential to steer the sled along the most exciting course, perhaps adding twists and turns to make the run down the hill faster or more exciting. Other techniques to improve the ride include turning around, lying on your stomach, or closing both eyes. Running up to a sled and jumping onto it can create additional momentum and improve ride speed. This technique can be referred to as "Flopping." There are four types of sleds commonly used today: disks, toboggans, tubes, and runner sleds. Each type has advantages and disadvantages if one is trying to get the most out of a given slope.


Mammoth Lakes Area Winter Activities
Ever considered snow snowshoeing? It's easy, fun and everyone can participate. There is no better way to begin snowshoeing than just going and doing it. A snowshoe is footwear for walking over the snow. Snowshoes distribute the weight of the person over a larger area so that the person's foot does not sink completely into the snow. In the past, snowshoes were essential tools for fur traders, trappers and anyone else whose way of living depended on the ability to get around in areas of deep snowfall. They remain necessary equipment for forest rangers and others who must be able to get around areas inaccessible to motorized vehicles when the snow is deep. Today, snowshoes are mainly used for recreation, primarily by hikers and runners who like to continue their hobby in wintertime. Snowshoeing is easy to learn, safe, and inexpensive. Pack a lunch and take a hike to experience the quiet and solitude of the mountains. Hear the wind blowing through the trees and see wildlife footprints in the untouched snow. Can you guess what woodland creature went by? Come across a creek and see the beauty of frozen icicles and perhaps a fish or two.


Oh, and don't forget the snowball fights. With so much snow you will never run out of activities to share with your friends and family, show them how much you care, throw a snowball and see how good your aim is. Have fun!


Having a pet on vacation can be difficult, but not if you take them dogsledding! Mammoth Dog Teams trains Malamutes, Siberian Huskies and Alaskan Huskies. You'll learn their names and personalities along your ride. These are working dogs who are well-trained and love what they do. Take a seat in a real, traditional dog sled. Mammoth Dog Teams provides authentic dogsled rides for families and people of all ages. Leave the modern world behind, cover up in a thick blanket and sit back while friendly huskies and malamutes pull you through the snow. In the winter the tremendous snowfalls and moderate temperatures create a fantastic winter wonderland.


Mammoth is known as being one of the most spectacular and rewarding fishing destinations in the west. The California Department of Fish and Game opened up year round, catch-and-release fishing in Mono County on excellent fisheries. Hot Creek and the Upper Owens River are 3 miles and 7 miles, respectively. It can be below freezing with snow and high winds in town and only a short drive away you'll find anglers enjoying a great day of fishing. The beauty of the Eastern Sierra with crystal clear lakes and streams is absolutely breathtaking. Fishing can be done in many ways - from shore or a boat, from a dock, in lakes and rivers and streams. There are a variety of fishing techniques, in addition to gear, baits and lures. Mammoth Lakes has Sporting Good Stores and Guides that can help you with your fishing needs. With all the different possibilities, there's something for everyone! What are you waiting for? Don't forget to throw your rod and reel in the car along with the skis and snowboards before you head up the hill.


The summit of Mammoth at 11,053 feet is perhaps the most stunning view you'll find in California. But don't be fooled by the remote elevation - once you reach the top you'll discover there's plenty to do. From the Sierra Interpretive Center to the Top Of The Sierra Caf‚, you'll be amazed at what you find above 11,000 feet.

Hours: 8:30am - 3:30pm (wind and weather permitting).
Call 800.MAMMOTH / 800.626.6684 to reserve in advance.


New Year fun begins at Mammoth. Each year the town of Mammoth Lakes throws a giant party. Every restaurant, nightclub and pub has food and drink specials, many have special entertainment, and are coupled with the classic hats, party favors, and good spirits. However, Many of the lodging providers will have availability on short notice starting 12/30 or 12/31 so book quickly!

The fun actually begins during the day with music and concerts everywhere. Most of the restaurants will have live music and a DJ. You do need reservations as it is crowded.

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Nomadness Corporation®
Phone: (818)883-2488 or (888)472-5777
Fax: (818)710-9847

Nomadness Corporation® Nomadness Corporation®
22287 Mulholland Hwy, Suite 429    1934 Meridian BLVD #100-121
Calabasas, CA 91302 Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546


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