Mammoth snowboarder

The improvements over the summer at Mammoth Mountain were relatively modest, but they further solidified the 60-year-old resort as the top day and overnight destination for Southern Californians.


Still, the biggest news wasn’t at the resort but 20 miles to the north where June Mountain, which is owned by Mammoth, will reopen after a year’s hiatus from operations. The initial closing in 2012 shocked many of the townspeople of June Lake, Calif., who rely heavily upon the skier-snowboarder business at the mountain. (See Aug. 28, 2013 report).


After a year of work on the hill, Mammoth officials announced the reopening of June Mountain this summer, with new Chair 1, more snowmaking and a greater emphasis on families and beginners.


Airline service from California cities into Mammoth Yosemite Airport continues to grow. From Dec. 19 to April 13, Alaska Airlines runs two daily flights from Los Angeles (LAX) to Mammoth – and two return flights – plus extra flights on Saturday morning. Alaska Airlines also has one daily roundtrip scheduled from San Diego, plus added flights on Saturday.


United Airlines picks up the San Francisco-Mammoth route with two roundtrips scheduled Monday, Thursday and Friday, and extra flights on Saturday, Tuesday and Wednesday. United also has a Monday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday flight to and from Orange County to Mammoth.


On the hill, Mammoth reinforces its reputation as one of the most comprehensive terrain park mountains in the country with interactive enhancements at the beginner and children’s terrain park, called Unbound Playgrounds and Adventure Zones. 


As an added bonus, the U.S. Freeskiing and Snowboard teams will train on the slopes, jibs and jumps at Mammoth, in preparation for the Sochi 2014 Olympics.


At slopeside, skiers and riders can pause to chow down at the new CAMPO restaurant in The Village at Mammoth. Along the lake, visitors can try out new organic, locally grown offerings at the Lakefront Restaurant. The Underground Lounge debuts with “a Hollywood vibe and an alpine twist,” according to resort promoters.


Further, the venerable Mammoth Mountain Inn is undergoing $700,000 worth of internal renovations that should be completed for the new season.


Photo: Mammoth Mountain snowboarder (Mammoth Mountain)