If you’ve ridden Mammoth Mountain, then you know a thing or two about riding in windy conditions.
Thanks to its high altitude and location, high winds are common all across Mammoth Mountain, especially at the top of the mountain. Mammoth wouldn’t be as popular as it is if the winds were unmanageable though, and with a little insider knowledge you can avoid high winds and other bad weather.
The Mammoth Mountain pros at ASO Mammothtalked it over and decided to share our favorite places to avoid bad weather so you can make the most of your day no matter how windy it may be. Check out our tips below!
Ride Trails that are Naturally Protected from High Winds
This tip seems obvious, but if everyone could do then there would be no need for this post. The higher you go up the mountain the more weather you’ll have to deal with, but with high winds at lease there are areas at the top of the mountain that are naturally protected.
While the entire backside of the mountain takes the worst of the wind, the trails off the Gondola are naturally protected from high winds and offer a good mix of challenging terrain with manageable winds. Another area that is generally protected from high winds is off Chair 22. While the terrain in this area may not be as challenging as that off of the Gondola, there is a mix of blues and blacks as well as opportunities to duck into the trees that could make this area a trip saver if you get stuck with bad weather.
Lastly, Chair 23 also offers runs that are naturally protected from high winds and plenty of challenging terrain. While these runs may be the most difficult and there is no guarantee that they will be open when there is bad weather, they can also be what saves your trip.
Head to the Canyon Lodge Area During Whiteouts
Storms mean more snow, but more snow can be a bad thing when it’s hurting your visibility and putting you in danger.
The area around Eagle and Canyon lodge experience lower winds than the rest of the mountain, which means better visibility during storms. Of course, the higher you go up the more likely you are to get stuck in a whiteout, so be prepared to get creative and do a little exploring to find the best lines in the limited area that is not affected by bad weather.
Your Trip is not Ruined Due to Bad Weather
If your chances to ride are limited to a few days every year, it’s easy to see how a bad weather report could make you think that your trip (and season) are ruined. Storms and high winds can actually improve your trip though.
A dump will make any regular trip to Mammoth Mountain legendary, but if you have to miss a day or ride on a limited part of the mountain due to high winds don’t despair. High winds pick up snow that has been packed down or pushed to the sides of trails and spread it out again, which means that even if you have a bad day the next one could make up for it thanks to fresh snow.Even if your plans are not flexible enough to schedule and re-schedule around weather, do your research ahead of time online and by talking to the pros at ASO Mammoth. We are happy to share everything we know about the mountain, whether it’s where to ride out bad weather or advice on renting ski and snowboard gear!