Great plan, for sure a good time to camp and ski. Totally agree about the snowpack not being like 2017.
If you haven’t already, check out:
It’s fun to compare this year too past memorable years. The stand out is ‘82-‘83 which appperntly had fewer inches of snowfall than ‘17 but way more water content.
California/Nevada 2018 - 2019 Mammoth Mountain
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The ski area I patronize most on the East Coast has gotten 12 feet. Over the entire season. And that's well above normal !
I've been thinking more and more about considering a late spring trip to Mammoth and/or Squaw. 60" forecast over the next week and a half according to OpenSnow. Let's keep the snow coming.
Keep in mind the tentative closing dates for Canyon Lodge, Eagle Lodge and lifts near them is Easter, April 21, regardless of conditions. After Easter there will definitely be good skiing out of Main Lodge, including the gondola, but it might seem like long way to travel from Boston for a partially open mountain.
The skiing has been great the last few weeks. Windy though!
Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
Appreciate the advice! Will the lifts that access the challenging alpine terrain like Chair 23, 14, the upper stage of the Panorama Gondola (I can't tell from the map if it's one lift with a midstation or two lifts, I'm thinking the former) be open in late May? That's what I'm really hoping to ski.
Generally the Gondola to the top and 23 will be open to the end, with 23 closing first. Mammoth doesn’t usually close just runs (except for avalanche closing) so any lines you can find off of those lifts will be open too. 14 probably won’t be open then. If you’re looking for above tree line steep skiing, my guess is that it’ll be real good (and forgiving after ~10am due to the slushy) in the end of May. Broadway, Face Lift and maybe Stump Alley will be open too.
In my opinion the skiing in the late spring and summer (June +) at Mammoth is more novel than it is excellent. If you haven’t enjoyed skiing in jeans and a t-shirt at a sunny, uncrowdedish, kinda windless, mountain with a good chance of corn and great apres’ fishing you might have a blast. I sure do.
RJS likes this.
Heading out to Mammoth on Friday night. First flying out to Reno, then driving down to Mammoth. Looks like a fairly simple drive, even if the current forecast calls for some lingering snow on Fri?
Hopefully I'm timing this right, as the storm and high winds seem to pass through by the time the weekend rolls around. Really looking forward to skiing the good stuff off the gondi and chairs 23, 22. Would love to catch a few turns together, if any one is amenable? Thanks!
Yeah, I definitely agree! It's been much more difficult to find reasonable prices in the area. It's like you need to go with a large group to share the pain. It's like $200 is the new bottom for hotel prices for Mammoth. "Oh, look, it went on sale, it's at $170/night!"
socalgal likes this.
Just wondering how your drive from RNO to Mammoth went. We're headed there for the first time on 3/20. Supposed to fly into MMH, but in search of a good backup plan in flight gets cancelled (which seems as likely as not). Obviously RNO would be best re-route option as long as roads are good. If the RNO route looks bad, I'd imagine it would take me just as long to fly into somewhere south like Bakersfield, Burbank, etc. What would be the best airport strategy for a cancelled flight into MMH? Any suggestions are appreciated. Flying United out of DEN, btw.
Viking9 likes this.
Thanks for the info on Ontario Airport. I didn't think RNO had any chance of being shut down. If diverted from MMH, I was just looking for options in case the drive from the north was going to be bad, or if we simply can't get a flight (for 4 of us) into RNO the same day. If that's the case, just wondering about my other more distant options. Looking at a map, it seems like Vegas may even be a good option. Not much further than Ontario Airport, but seems like it would be a drier drive with less traffic?
Reno to Mammoth is on the backside of the Sierras. Often, storms don't make it across the Sierras. Chain controls are often 2wd with snow tires OK for short sections. It's a pretty safe backup bet, even with a 2wd rental. Walmart next to the Reno airport sells chains for less than a 4wd rental.
This year, every storm has affected 395 so @Viking9 has been right. Last few years I haven't had to put chains on on that drive.
Ontario is not without LA traffic but it is the safest bet. Getting from the highway to the slopes might be the toughest part of the drive. Walmart chains? But not as good a stock as Reno. Ontario doesn't have lots of flight options though.
Vegas might be fun with the detour through Death Valley but even a "quick" Death Valley tour is a full day. Worth it, especially if weather is messing with more than just flights (like lift closures or skiing in rain). Death Valley rarely gets weather - if it does it's unusual enough to rate seeing.
Mountain Man Saturday was crowded because of the Freestyle competition but on Sunday for some strange reason everyone left, at ten o clock there were still spots to park between main lodge and 2.
Six to eight inches Saturday night and sun all day, weather man had it cloudy for Sunday but for once he was wrong.The snow was light and had no problem with my new Experience 84.
My funnest run was the upper race course run that for some reason did not have a race, big fat GS turns and a perfect pitch, Blue Ox were perfect powder bumps !!
MountainMonster likes this.
The drive from Reno to mammoth is an easy 3 hour drive. No chains were necessary for me on fri night 3/8. I had an suv rental with AWD, but never really needed it. The snow all came either before fri night or on sat night -- outside of my driving time windows. Make reservations for an SUV and a regular sedan and then cancel one or the other on the day-of, depending on current weather conditions. All the rental car companies allow reservations without credit card info.
Fly out of ontario or vegas only if you enjoy trading a 3 hour drive for one double that.
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