Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 23, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club

The snow was good at Mammoth Mountain from the start today as it was only 31 degrees in Mammoth Lakes last night. That makes it so it’s not too firm and potentially icy in the mornings. Coverage is good, and the views, as always, are spectacular! Here’s what the Minarets looked like with some high clouds:

The views from Mammoth Mountain are impressive in every direction. I love the clouds around the Minarets with reds Meadows in the foreground.

Chairs 1, 2, 3 and 5 were the best places to start today. The upper gondola was also good. They had groomed Scotty’s, and that was fun to ski from chair 23. Here’s the coverage on the top from the bottom of chair 23:

The top of chair 23 at Mammoth Mountain has ample coverage, but watch out for obsticles at the entry points.

I skied over on chair 15 on the sunny side of the mountain, and the coverage and skiing were still excellent. Skiing is not epic at Mammoth Mountain, but it is really good especially on the groomed runs. Mammoth Mountain is doing an excellent job of making the skiing fun on a snow drought year.

I did ski West Bowl’s bumps 2 times, and they were fun as well. I saw some guys skiing Climax, but it looked too firm with too many rocks to be able to really fly. You kinda had to pick your way down. All the intermediate and beginner slopes have excellent coverage, and the crowds are light. So if you are wondering if you should visit Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort this weekend, I’d say go for it! You’ll be glad you did.

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 17, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-SMAO!!!

I skied yesterday at Mammoth Mountain, and it was spectacular! Everywhere is open, and the coverage is the best it has been all year. The main pack at opening hit the high traverse off the back of chair 3, so I went a different direction. I noticed that West Bowl had filled in nicely and was largely untouched, so I did about 4 laps down West Bowl. The bumps were perfect and soft, so you could really point them downhill.

After that, I hit chair 1 and skied The Wall and The Glades. People seemed it be avoiding this area probably due to the treetops, but if you use them as slalom poles they can be an asset. I had a blast skiing all over chair 1, and then I was going to take a break, but just as I got to the top of chair 1, I could see they just opened chair 23 and the top.

I scurried over to chair 23, and rode it to the top. Dropout 1 looked nice as it was Tuesday, so I pointed my skis in that direction. The entry was a little icy and rocky, but once you got below the first 30 feet or so, the coverage was good. By the time you got to the bottom of the rocks at Dropout, it was wide open, almost knee-deep powder runs. I opted for an unnoticed line, and skied it alone for 4 runs.

By now I needed a break so I went and drank some water with my Cliff Bar. Then I went back to chair 3 and skied Christmas Bowl to Waterfall which is kinda sketchy due to sparse coverage. I skied down to chair 5, and skied Face of Five 3-4 times. The bumps were soft and forgiving. I love bumps now as long as they aren’t icy.

Next, I skied Solitude to Back for More. It was nice there, but chair 15 wasn’t running, so I opted to traverse to chair 22. Went up chair 22 for a run, and then headed to chair 16 to add some variety. Every chair had no line so you could ski right into it. After skiing chair 16 a few times, I went back to chair 5, and noticed that they had finally launched the gondola to the top. Climax and Dave’s Run had not been touched yet because only chair 23 had opened.

I got to the top of the gondola, and the rope was down for Dave’s Run. I traversed down the cat track on the ridge, and was met with a stiff head wind about half way. I pushed myself to the top of Dave’s Run only to find a band of ice near the top marked by red poles. After skiing past the ice, it was untouched skier’s right, but it had firmed up with the wind and wasn’t worth a second lap.

I ended with some runs through the trees in 3 places on the mountain. There I found untracked powder that was still light. By 2: pm, I was skied out and ready to go home. Skiing at Mammoth Mountain this weekend will be excellent. Coverage is the best it has been all year and the snow is soft and forgiving. I recommend you wear a third layer on top and fleece on your face as daytime temperatures are still brisk.

More snow is forecast to fall Saturday, so make a plan to come to Mammoth Mountain as soon as possible. Until then I’ll See You On The Slopes!

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 15, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-WINTER IS HERE!!!

I skied Mammoth Mountain yesterday, and it was the best day I’ve skied so far this year. The 9” of new snow made it pillowy soft all day long. First, I skied chair 2 and it was uncrowded so you could find fresh lines everywhere.

Then I hit chair 3 for some runs down Center Bowl and West Bowl. Most of the skiers had gone on the high traverse off the back of 3, so that left West Bowl largely untouched. I made several laps through West Bowl testing to see how far I could go skiers’ right without hitting rock. I was able to cross my tracks twice before I sought different terrain.

Then I hit The Wall through The Glades. That was mostly untouched, and it was fun using the tree tops as slalom poles. That was worth about 4 laps.

I was about to take a break, when I saw chair 23 open.  I thought about skiing Monuments which had been good on Sunday, but as I was riding the chair up 50-70 skiers hit Monuments before I could get there. I saw that Dropout had only about 10 skiers, so I headed that direction. Dropout had only 1 entry point through the rocks at the top, but deep powder was your reward for picking your way through.

I skied that line back to chair 23 until there was no more fresh powder to be had. Then I took my short break. After my quick break, I went to ski chair 5.  Face of Five was really nice with boot top to almost knee deep powder if you knew where to look. I made 4 laps on that, and then tried the bowl skiers’ right off Solitude. That was excellent, but it always requires a short hike out of the low point.

I made my way over to Back for More on the cat track, and that was empty. I went into the trees there for the first time this year and it was a little sketchy, but I managed to not snag anything. After a few laps in the trees, I figured out that the best snow left was on Face of Five, so I went back there. I skied that until about 2: pm, and then headed home.

Now it finally feels like Winter is here because you can get into most of the chutes and the trees at Mammoth Mountain. Use caution on the Lincoln Mountain and Eagle sides of the mountain as the coverage is thinnest there due to the sun exposure.

More snow is falling today with 8” of fresh powder today adding to the 9” that fell on Monday. Skiing should be very good for the President’s weekend. I encourage you to make the pilgrimage to Mammoth Mountain this weekend. It will be worth it! I will be skiing again tomorrow, so my next Mammoth Mountain Ski Report will be after that.

 

 

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 13, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-FINALLY MORE SNOW!!

I skied this weekend with Mammoth Ski Club members, and the best snow was in the back bowls and in the trees if you knew where to look. The paranoids were also excellent. Right now, Mammoth Mountain is reporting 5″ of new snow as it will continue to fall today, Tuesday and part of Wednesday.

The storm has socked in the Owens Valley, and it is currently snowing in Bishop. I think tomorrow is going to be epic, and I hope the winds stay manageble. One more foot of snow will make the skiing alot better at Mammoth because it should open up all the chutes and tree runs.

I’ll be skiing tomorrow, and posting photos if I can get any during the storm. So stay tuned for an update tomorrow on how much snow has fallen at Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort. Until Then, I’ll See You On the Slopes!

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 9, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-SO NICE!

The storm that almost dumped on Mammoth Tuesday skirted the foothills of the Sierra, but never really made it over the crest. So Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort only got 1” of new snow from the storm. Here’s what the top looked like from the bottom of chair 23:

Mammoth Mountain's Dropout and Wipeout Chutes from the bottom of chair 23.

The new snow did make it nice and grippy, but it is still mostly the groomers that are the best runs due to the current snow drought. Here’s a skier enjoying the groomed run of Stump Alley:

Who doesn't love freshly groomed runs in the morning? Mammoth Mountain is one of the best at grooming their runs.

The crowds and winds were light, and you could ski into any chair all day long. The Wall got more snow, but the entry is still rocky. I found the runs on the back of chair 1 to be the most fun. Here’s what the Wall looks like after the new snow:

Mammoth Mountain's "The Wall" still has some tree tops showing through, but most of it is covered well.

The bumps are in at the top , and if Mammoth Mountain got only 1-2 feet of fresh powder, it would open up the chutes and the trees. Here’s what Corndrop (between Cornice and Dropout) looked like yesterday morning:

Corndrop is makable from the top off chair 23.

Runs off chair 15 were also really fun in the morning before they got too much sun. There is a 30% chance of new snow this Saturday, and more snow is expected on Monday.

I noticed that Mammoth Mountain snow making crews had dug out the snow guns at many locations so they could add man-made snow to the snow base and keep the coverage good. We are in the middle of one of the biggest drought winters in recorded history, but the good news is the skiing is really nice and fun at Mammoth Mountain. I Look Forward to Seeing You On the Slopes!

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Mammoth Mountain Ski report February 3, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club – BEAUTIFUL!

I skied Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort today for about 5 hours. Here’s what Mammoth Mountain looks like for coverage overall:

Mammoth Mountain as you see it entering Mammoth Lakes is mostly covered with snow, but could use more.

I started about 9 am, and there was virtually no wind. The air temperature was still cold, and I wound up putting some fleece on my face. I skied chair 3, and it was really carvable in Center Bowl, especially skiers’ left. Then I skied the upper Gondola and Cornice had a soft, fresh groom on it. By the time I got to the bottom I had a big grin on my face. “That was as nice as I’ve skied it so far this year.”, I thought to myself.

Always in search of the “greener grass”, I skied Dave’s Run to Solitude. Dave’s was funky, and not too good. Lots of small cross-cut bumps and still a lot of rocks that will need more snow to be covered. I planned to ski Gold Hill, but the ski patrol had put round red signs across the run as a cautionary measure. It looked boilerplate, so I kept going. Solitude was groomed as smooth as the 405 fwy, and you could enlarge your turns into some nice GS.

Followed that to the track to Back for More. I love to do the variations off chair 25 and Back for More. It doesn’t get as effected by the sun as the runs more towards chair 9. I did some screamers down there, as there were only maybe 3-4 people on the entire run.

I came back after those runs and skied Solitude again off chair 5. It had good coverage and some lose, carvable snow on it. By this time I came to the conclusion that the best snow I had skied was on Cornice. So I skied to chair 2, and went to ride the upper gondola again.

I did top to bottom runs down Cornice and then over the back of chair 1 to Fascination, and back to the gondola. Again the snow on Cornice was really nice, and the loose snow had built into soft pillows you could use to turn and check your speed if you had to.

Mammoth Mountain should be fun for those of you traveling up this weekend. Next snow potential as of now is this Tuesday. We’ll see what happens.

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report February 1, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-Pray for More Snow!

This last week I skied Mammoth Mountain Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday and Monday. The 55” of snowfall Mammoth received from the 2 storms that hit made it so much better. Tuesday was my daughter’s birthday, so I didn’t ski, but I met some Mammoth Ski Club members on Wednesday and Thursday that are advanced skiers.

We skied Dave’s Run and Cornice off the top, and both were nice and soft. We skied the back bowls, and it was easy to find untracked snow in the trees and glades. You can ski most any run and ski right into the chair. We skied Solitude on the ridge of the new high-speed chair 5, and the coverage was good.

Other areas we enjoyed were Center Bowl on chair 3, and Andy’s run off chair 1. The coverage after the 2 storms was dramatically improved, but by Sunday rocks were again starting to show through. Late Sunday I made the mistake of entering Cornice skier’s left at high speed only to find Mammoth Mountain’s rocky base sticking through the snow. I hit numerous embedded rocks that should have been marked with poles at least.

The rocks tore a 1″ long gash in my ski base on the edge, so I was done for the day. I can say, ski technicians at what was Mammoth Sporting Goods last year (they changed their name this year), did a great job of fixing the ski base and fully tuning my skis in time for skiing on Monday.

Skied all over the open runs on Monday, and more rocks were showing through the snow base. It was nice to have a good tune on my skis, but I was disappointed that the unloading ramp off chair 1 had so many rocks you had to run over. I opted to avoid chair 1 to not destroy my fresh ski tune-up. The coverage over by chair 9 is good, but it suffers from being on the sunny side of the mountain and it gets compacted and icy more quickly than the rest of Mammoth Mountain.

Realistically, Mammoth Mountain is going to have a lean snow year this year in all probability, and they really need another storm to cover the obstacles as snowmaking has ceased. For now, my recommendation is to stick to mostly intermediate slopes where the coverage is best, and leave the advanced runs for the ones who are skiing their rock skis. Pray for snow! Mammoth still needs it.

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report January 26, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club

I skied at Mammoth Mountain yesterday and today, and the conditions are light years better after the 2 storms that hit Jan. 20-23. The upper mountain now has better coverage, although it will take another storm to really get the chutes open as there are some rocky entries currently. Here’s what Dropout and Wipeout Chutes looked like with Cornice groomed today:

Here's Mammoth Mountain's Chair 23 with Wipeout and Dropout Chutes coated in a fresh coat of powder, and Cornice is groomed.

The lower mountain got a lot of snow too, and The Wall has just small treetops showing in some areas and through the Glades:

The Wall has ample coverage once you pick your way through the obsticles at the top.

West Bowl and Center Bowl filled in nicely and Center Bowl was sweet with about an inch of wind-blown, buttery-soft powder over the top today. In this shot, you can see Center Bowl, West Bowl and Climax which still has obstacles:

West Bowl, Center Bowl, and Climax shot from Mammoth Mountain's Chair 2.

So if you are coming up this weekend, it will be wide open skiing top to bottom, for real. Yesterday I even got into the back bowls, and they are covered well. Overall the crowds were light both days with skiing right into the chair being the norm.

Keep praying to Uller and hopefully Mammoth Mountain will get more snow in about 7 days. Until then, I’ll See You On the Slopes!

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Mammoth Mountain Snowfall Contest Winner Announced! – 55″!

Last week, I posted a contest to the Mammoth Ski Club blog to guess the official Mammoth Mountain snowfall for January 20-24 with the 2 approaching storm systems. We had 44 entries with lots of good guesses, but it was Travis Williams that made the correct guess with 55″ of snowfall.

According to the official snowfall listed in the History tab on the Mammoth Mountain Ski Area website, here are the snowfall totals by day:

January 20 – 17″

January 21 – 11″

January 22 – 18″

January 23 – 9″ for a total of 55″ over the 4 days.

Travis Williams can email me (see “Contact” tab on the navigation bar) with his shirt size and address so I can Priority Mail him his Prize of the Hooded Mammoth Ski Club sweatshirt ($55.00 Value). Look for additional contests and free stuff in future posts. Until Then, I’ll See You On the Slopes!

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Mammoth Mountain Ski Report January 21, 2012 for Mammoth Ski Club-IT’S DUMPING!!!

19″ of wet snow have fallen so far this storm, so Mammoth Mountain is finally getting the snow base neeeded to open up more of the mountain. When I look towards the Sierra now, it is black with clouds and moisture which means it is DUMPING!

Mammoth Mountain is initiating a new flag system to indicate if and when chairs will open. I have been asking for some sort of indication of chairlift activity for years, so this is a good development. Here’s how they describe it, “At the bottom of all chairlifts, 1 of 4 flags will be displayed. A green square indicates the chair is open. A red diamond indicates it’s closed. A yellow triangle means 30 minutes or less and a Blue Circle indicates expected.”

Mammoth Ski Club is having a “guess the Snowfall” contest with a Mammoth Ski Club hooded sweatshirt as the prize ($55.00 Value). To Enter, simply go to the blog post below this one, click on the comments, and make your best snowfall guess for the days indicated. Details are described in that post of when the prize will be awarded.

The National Weather Service assures me that there is more weather out there, so stay tuned for up to date Mammoth Ski Reports from Mammoth Ski Club as the snow accumulates… Awooooooo!

Videos of Lindsey Vonn’s GS runs have been uploaded to the Mammoth Ski Club Faccebook page. Check it out! Next Mammoth Ski report will be tomorrow morning. See You On the Slopes!

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