Things To Do in Mammoth Lakes
Mammoth Lakes is tucked along California’s eastern border, hidden among the peaks of Mount Morrison and a collection of Gold Rush reminders. This tiny community stands alone within Mono County, sprawling over 60 square miles along the Long Valley Caldera. Established in 1923, this rugged area is a peculiar mix of old charm and modern appeal. There are a wealth of activities to find year-round on vacation in Mammoth Lakes.
Look for these attractions, and try something new:
The Devil's Postpile National Monument: Explore the wild in California. The Devils Postpile National Monument is a 798 acre park. It was established in 1911 to preserve its namesake formation -- the Devils Postpile, which is a 60 foot column formed from lava remains. Within the area visitors will find waterfalls, hiking trails and the San Joaquin River. Observational points will offer pristine photography opportunities. The park is open all year. Pets are allowed, as long as they remain leashed; and wheelchairs can access many of the paths.
Owens Valley: Experience geology with Owens Valley. This ragged basin is cradled between Mount Morrison and the High Sierras. It reaches across 75 miles and offers distinctive characteristics, such as: exposed fault paths, rain shadows and glacial debris. Trek along its protected trails to discover the San Andreas line and a scattering of dry lakes. Owens Valley can prove to be challenging to inexperienced hikers. Guides are therefore recommended.
Belladonna Mammoth Massage and Day Spa: Settled in the heart of Mammoth Lakes is the Belladonna Center. Providing European treatments, this day spa ensures that no guest will be without luxury. Indulge in hot sea shells therapy, couples massages, facials, pedicures and more. Belladonna is open daily. Reservations are not required but could prove to be essential during the busy summer season.
Bodie State Historic Park: Journey into the past. Bodie State Historic Park -- established in 1962 -- allows visitors to uncover the secrets of a ghost town. Chart out the evolution of what was once an area rich in gold and ore (until the economy plummeted in 1915, forcing citizens to flee). Stroll down carefully restored streets. Seek out shops that are still filled with 20th century wares. Explore homes that have been painstakingly secured, ensuring that they remain in a state of arrested decay. There’s much to see. Bodie State Historic Park is open throughout the year. Winter weather often causes early closures, however. Be aware of snow and rain patterns.
Parallax Snowcat: Discover California’s best views with Parallax Snowcat. This unique dining experience takes guests on a tour of Mammoth Mountain, using a snowcat machine to scale the peaks. Once at the top individuals are offered five-star dining at the Parallax Restaurant. Champagne and gourmet cuisine await at over 9,000 feet in the air. The scenery is breathtaking; the atmosphere is romantic; and the trek back to the base will prove to be exhilarating. Parallax Snowcat requires reservations. Those with breathing difficulties should note the high altitude and consult with their doctors before attempting this activity.
The Mono-Inyo Craters: Settled beyond Mammoth Lakes are stunning cinder-cone valleys. The Mono-Inyo Craters were formed over 40,000 years ago. They stretch across 25 miles and reach depths of 200 feet. Travelers will be amazed by the volcanic designs and shifts, which have created massive domes, fissures and buttes. Hike along established pathways and explore the uncommon ecology (which includes bears, marmots and mule deer). The craters can be accessed throughout the year. No reservations are required.
The area boasts some of the best fishing in America, and Mammoth Mountain ski area is known for some legendary snow. Mammoth Lakes is a California vacation destination like no other - seek it out.