Welcome to MammothSnowman.com - Winter 2023/24
November 21st, 2023 – @ 9:44 AM – Good morning, it’s a gorgeous Thanksgiving week here from Mammoth Lakes down to Bishop. If you’re coming up this week all roads are open and clear and there is no accumulating snow in the forecast through this Sunday.
Lot’s of people are out skiing and riding while others are taking advantage of the lack of snow in the area to mountain bike and hike. There are even still a few Fall colors left in Bishop.
For those of you looking into an Outdoor Adventure off the Mountain, the current snow line is up around the 8500 to the 9000 level. If you’re heading up in the Mammoth Lakes Basin the Road is closed but you can still walk or snow shoe in to access the hiking trails that now have 6-10 inches of snow on them.
Mammoth Mountain Snow Report: Out on the hill, the skiing and riding are good on the limited terrain that is open. Snow conditions have been packed powder on top of a firmer man made base. The best news from the hill is Chair 2 and the Mill is now open with ski back access via Mambo.
If you’re going out to ski and ride you just have to be ready for a crowded slope and lift lines at times. Slow down and watch yourself there are some real kooks out there going way to fast right now. Ski and Ride the sides and keep yourself safe. 🙂
There are now 16 open runs, with chairs 1, 2, 3, 6, and G1 running at this time. The base out on the hill is around 12-18 inches with a nice packed powder surface. > Low Tide Alert, stay on the open runs and expect to see and possibly hit some hidden rocks out there.
The runs that are groomed are: Broadway, Saddle Bowl, Mambo and the Lower Unbound
Ungroomed Low Tide Adventure Runs: Center Bowl, West Bowl, Andy’s Double Gold, Fascination (Tony’s), Silver Tip, St Anton ( real thin cover), Terry’s Run, The Wall, Exhibition, Ralphies, & Rusty’s.
Up Top the Cornice Bowl looked ready to go and then the NE winds came in and striped that snow off late Sunday Night. Going to need a big storm into the area to be able to get the top open.
Area Road Conditions: 395 remains Open and Clear this morning. The Mammoth Lakes Basin Road is Closed and is expected to remain closed for the winter. Tioga & Sonora Passes are closed, and they, too, might be closed for the winter. Check out Snowman’s 395/203 Road Report and Webcam Page at this link.
The Next Update will be on Monday Afternoon; I’m going to be out the door at sunrise on Monday and will report back what I find and see out there at that time.
Mammoth Mountain Weather Forecast: A ridge of high pressure is in the area the next couple days and will be replaced by an inside slider that will bring some very chilly air by Friday and into the weekend. Snowmaking will be running strong with this next pool of air coming in.
No big storms in sight over the next week to 10 days. There could be a few snowflakes later this week with the slider and then again out around day 10.
If you plan to be out skiing and riding the next few days, expect mostly sunny skies with mid-day highs in the low to mid-40s. Nighttime lows will be in the lower to mid 30s. By Thanksgiving mid days temperatures will start to drop and the NE winds will be returning to the area.
>>> Here is the link to our complete Mammoth Weather Forecast, the Snowmaking Outlook, and the Long Range Discussion.
Video Player: Snowman will be filming the next Mammoth Today video on Monday. (Note: Make sure to click on the gear settings tab and change the video view to 4k for the best quality.)
Mammoth Mountain Photo Snow Report - 11-20-2023
Late Fall & Winter Activities
It’s a great time to get out with the cooler days and little snow pack on the ground yet below the 8500 level. Above that level, you will find 0-5 inches on the ground on local hiking and biking trails. Everything in the shade is snowy, with some icey patches mixed in. Also to note that in the Mammoth Lakes Basin, it’s all smoked due to pile burning.
For Mountain Biking, Mammoth Rock Trail and Uptown / Downtown are in great shape. Lower Rock Creek Canyon Trail is also in great condition in all three sections. You can also ride down in Bishop in perfect 70-degree weather now. Check out our Mountain Bike Trail Report here.
The Fall Colors in the high country are done for the season. However, the Round Valley and Bishop areas have some charming colors to check out and should be around for the next couple of weeks.
For those planning on coming up this winter, while most of you will be coming up to spend all your free daylight hours on Mammoth Mountain, there are plenty of other things to do in the area during the winter months.
I know many people who want to come up but are not interested in skiing and snowboarding. Here are a few ideas of what else there is to do.
** NO Snow Yet, But It Won’t Be Long Now. Let’s Pray for a White Thanksgiving in the High Country
Scenic Gondola Rides: Starting for the Winter Season Full Time on 11-18-23 – Riding to the top of Mammoth Mountain is a fantastic experience. The views are breathtaking as you ride up and beyond once you’re standing at the top.
Once you reach the top station, you will have a 360-degree view of the Eastern Sierra and the Sierra Nevada. You will also get a chance to get a picture of the famous Mammoth Mountain Sign at 11,000 feet.
There is also an interpretative center with more information about the Eastern Sierra, Mammoth Mountain, and the mountain peaks you can see from the 11,000-foot level. Here is the link to the scenic ride information page.
Snowmobiling: This is a blast just outside of Mammoth Lakes. However, the fun is dictated by how much snow we have. During years of average and above snowfall, the amount of riding you will find is fantastic.
If you’re new to the sport, you will want to take a 2-hour trip with Mammoth Mountain Snow Mobile Adventures, located out of the Main Lodge area. When there is ample snow, you can access miles and miles of riding on groomed-out service roads.
Cross-Country Skiing: There are some incredible options for Cross-Country skiing here in Mammoth Lakes and the Eastern High Sierra
The best cross-country skiing will always be up in the Mammoth Lakes Basin at the Tamarack Cross-Country Ski Center. As we get into winter, the snow levels and colder air move down into the lower elevations. That will give you many options for Cross-Country skiing beside the Tamarack Resort in the Mammoth Lakes Basin.
Sledding: The Snowman loves Sledding and snow play with the Family in Mammoth Lakes. On storm days when the hill is mainly shut down, Sledding can keep you and your kids occupied for hours.
I think almost nothing beats a couple of hours of sledding out on the hills around your yard, the town, or the mountains of the Eastern Sierra with the family. Grab the kids, the helmets, and a variety of sleds, and get ready for some major fun. Here is a link to learn some good locations for Sledding in Mammoth Lakes.
Ice Skating: There are several options for ice skating in the Eastern Sierra. The town of Mammoth Lakes runs a brand-new ice rink on Old Mammoth Road. The ice rink opens for the first time for the Thanksgiving Holiday.
Hiking / Walking: Depending on the snow levels, you will find some fun hiking/walking options during the winter months.
First, during the drier seasons, the Mammoth Lakes town trail system is an excellent option for a walk. The paved trails that start by the Blue Park off of Old Mammoth Road are the best places to venture as they’re the most likely paths to be free of snow and ice.
The second option is the Lower Rock Creek Trail, about 10 miles south of Mammoth Lakes, just past Toms places if you’re heading south of 395. This trail holds ice and snow, so be prepared even if the terrain is snow-free.
Winter Mountain Biking: For the hearty soul who knows how to layer up for cold biking, there are a ton of trails to ride during the winter months, depending on what elevation the snow line is at.
Near Mammoth, when the snow line is above 7500 feet, there are tons of forest service roads you can ride. You will find all sorts of unmapped single-track trails to explore off these service roads.
Rock Creek Canyon is amazing for downhill action, using two cars to shuttle back up from the bottom. You can ride back up the trail or use the road if you cannot shuttle; watch for ice on the road as it’s in the shade most of the winter months.
The Bishop area also has many trails you can ride during winter, and the temperatures are more favorable than riding up in the high country. Check out our Eastern Sierra Mountain Bike Report for Current Trail Conditions and Where to Ride.
Winter Fishing: The Owens River and the Hot Creek area are open for fishing during the winter months. Yes, it’s cold, and your hands will get frozen, so be prepared. Fishing the Owens River out of Bishop is my call for winter fishing.
Rock Creek Canyon Snow Park:3 miles up from Toms Place, there is parking for access to snow play up in Rock Creek Canyon.
Mill Pond Park & Disc Golf: A great place to hang out just at the bottom of the Sherwin Grade. There is an entire 18-hole disc golf course to keep you busy for hours. Have you got Kids? The park has a playground for energy output.
Laws Rail Road Museum: I recommend everyone visiting the Eastern Sierra to experience this unique museum setting. You’ll find 11 acres of indoor and outdoor exhibits, including the original depot and steam locomotive, the Slim Princess. Experience what life was like over 100 years ago in Owens Valley. https://lawsmuseum.org/welcome-museum
Bishop City Park: Over the years, we have spent many hours at Bishop City Park enjoying the warmer climate and being out of the snow. This is a great place to have lunch and let the kids out to play without all the snow in Mammoth Lakes. You will see many Mammoth locals down here during the winter months trying to get a taste of winter below the snowline.
Ski Ya Later, Snowman
Website Author – Steve Taylor – Mammoth Snowman – Over the last 35+ years, Snowman has spent countless hours studying and learning about Mammoth Mountain Weather and Snow Conditions first hand. He has been skiing around the hill with marked ski poles since March of 1991 so he can measure the fresh snowfall amounts out on the hill.
Snowman started blogging this information back in 1990 on the old Mammoth BBS system, then the RSN Forums and then on to MammothSnowman.com in 2004 with the Video & Photo Blog report. (No YouTube back then). Facebook got added to the fold back in 2008 and then the Facebook Group in 2016.
Reports, videos, and photos from the website have been featured on both local TV Stations here in Mammoth, along with AP, Fox, ABC, CBS, and NBC News. You can learn more about the MammothSnowman.com team here.