Mammoth is a very special place.
I could tell you the usual details, like "great terrain for all abilities" and "superior lifts" etc., but it's much more than that.
First of all, Mammoth is a very scenic place located in the Eastern Sierras. The famous "Minarets" – off to skiers left – kind of oversee the mountain with their beautiful towering formations. The area is surrounded by lakes (hence Mammoth Lakes) and Yosemite is close by.
The aprés on the mountain is very good and laid back. Make sure you check out the Yodler adjacent to Main Lodge and next to the Mammoth Mountain Inn (but if you get there after 5pm good luck finding a seat). Canyon Lodge has a decent bar (indoors) but is epic outdoors in the afternoon.
Generally, Mammoth is a pretty low-key place, on the hill and in town. Though Intrawest wants to make it very resort-ish (West coast Vail), and is packed with people from SoCal (like me), it's a pretty down-to-earth atmosphere where the locals generally accept visitors with open arms and are friendly. I hope that lasts.
As for the skiing and riding, what do you like? Boulevards of courd? Mammoth's grooming team is recognized as one of the best in the country.
- Glades? Check out the trees on Dragons Back and Lincoln Mtn. (chairs 9 and 22).
-Steeps? The whole upper mountain is Black and Dbl Black. Check out Climax, Upper Dry Creek and Viva for starters.
-Chutes? Your lucky day! Try Avalanche Chutes 1&2, Wipe Out Chutes and Philipee's (gnarly).
-Powder Days? Anywhere of the top (via Gondola or Chair 23) and Lincoln Mountain (I like Shaft), off Chair 22
-The instruction is also widely known as tops.
There's also a great backside to the mountain as well.
So, in a nutshell, nobody goes to Mammoth to be seen. You go for the incredible terrain and low-key attitude. All the jerks from L.A. (I live in L.A., I can say that) aren't in love with the sport to make the 5-6 hour drive. You'll find them at the lame local (SoCal) hills.
The best online resource I've found for familiarizing yourself with Mammoth (the Mountain and town) is here:http://www.mammothsecrets.com./
Other good resources are here:http://www.mammothmountain.com/http://www.gomammoth.com/http://www.rsn.com/community/msglist/1,1271,88,00.html
Have a great time. BTW, this is the longest post I think I've ever written about anything. THAT is how much I love Mammoth!
-Fernando Montes [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]