If you’ve visited Mammoth Lakes before, then you know how valuable the Eastern Sierra Transit Authority’s service is to locals and visitors alike. EST is still essential for getting around town, especially for overnight visitors hoping to avoid parking at Mammoth Mountain. However, Mammoth Lakes is still reopening and there are many unknowns for visitors coming back into town.
The ASO Mammoth team wants everyone who visits Mammoth Mountain and Mammoth Lakes to have the best trip possible, and a key part of that is staying safe while in town. To help you do that, we’ve listed what you need to know about COVID-19 and the Eastern Sierra Transit Authority so you can get around easily as well as safely. Keep reading to find out more and then stop by ASO Mammoth during your visit for Mammoth Lakes best ski and snowboard gear!
The EST Currently Requires Social Distancing and Masks.
The EST and all its vehicles are operating under local and state health orders. That means that masks are required for everyone over the age of two years old and social distancing is being enforced on all vehicles with reduced capacity limits.
Fortunately, the new COVID procedures have not affected most EST services. However, EST is recommending that riders make reservations ahead of riding the Reno and Lancaster routes. One other important route change is the Mammoth Night Trolley now only runs until midnight instead of on its previous schedule.
To get the most up to date information on the EST, check out their Twitter account here. You can also find information about their winter service routes in Mammoth Lakes here, and for general EST information check out their home page here. If you’re visiting Mammoth Lakes during the summer and plan on using the EST, then make sure you view the summer only routes ahead of your visit, and don’t forget that ASO Mammoth is easily accessible from the Purple line!
Public Transit Safety and COVID – 19
Once you’re on the EST or any public transit, it’s vital to practice safe habits to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Mammoth Lakes and beyond. That means wearing a mask and practicing social distancing at all times when riding of course, but there are less obvious steps you can take to stay safe.
For example, you can avoid travelling at peak usage time. Even with capacity limits in place, avoiding public vehicles when they’re at their most crowded will protect you even further as well as reduce the strain on the transit system. Not everyone has a flexible schedule though, so if you’re riding during peak hours, or anytime for that matter, do your best to avoid touching surfaces as much as possible. You’ll have to touch a rail in order to keep your balance if you’re standing though, which is why you should always wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and water or hand sanitizer at your first chance after contact. You should also avoid eating or drinking while on public transit so you can keep your mask on at all times.
Carpooling and COVID-19
We love road-tripping for a ski trip as much as anyone, but with the spread of COVID-19 we’ve had to question whether it’s safe or not.
Carpooling should be limited to those with an essential need to make the trip, especially if the riders are from different households. If you are carpooling with people out of your household, then wear a mask and try to improve the ventilation in the car with an open window when possible and setting the air conditioning to non-recirculation mode.
They say that there’s no such thing as a free lunch, but there is free Mammoth Public Transit shuttle that will drive you to lunch. Check out our Mammoth Shuttle Post!