The Getaway
15 Things to Do in Summer and Fall in Mammoth Lakes

Nestled in the Eastern Sierra, Mammoth, California, is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. With its stunning landscapes and diverse activities, Mammoth offers a unique blend of adventure and relaxation. Whether you're seeking the thrill of mountain sports or thetranquillityy of alpine lakes, this destination promises an unforgettable experience in both summer and fall. The region's natural beauty is accentuated by the dramatic peaks of the Sierra Nevada and the lush, green valleys that bloom in the warmer months, while the fall brings a symphony of colors with the changing leaves.

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01 Explore the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park

Mammoth Mountain Bike Park

Experience the rush of mountain biking at the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park. With over 80 miles of singletrack, the park caters to riders of all skill levels. Summer brings the perfect weather for hitting the trails, and the fall colors provide a breathtaking backdrop for your ride. The bike park is known for its well-maintained paths and variety of terrain, from gentle banked turns to challenging technical descents, ensuring that every rider finds their thrill.

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02 Take a scenic gondola ride

mammoth gondola

Soar to new heights with a scenic gondola ride to the summit of Mammoth Mountain. The panoramic views of the Sierra Nevada range are especially stunning during the summer months, while the fall foliage offers a spectacular display of colors. At the summit, visitors can enjoy interactive learning experiences at the interpretive center and dine at the mountaintop restaurant with vistas that stretch for miles.

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03 Go fishing in the Mammoth Lakes Basin

fishing charter

Anglers will find their paradise in the Mammoth Lakes Basin. Summer and fall are ideal for casting a line in the crystal-clear lakes and streams, where trout are abundant. Whether you're fly fishing or using a traditional rod and reel, the serene environment is perfect for a day of fishing. The basin is home to numerous alpine lakes, each offering a unique fishing experience and the chance to catch a trophy-sized fish.

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04 Hike to Rainbow Falls

man hiking in mammoth lake

Embark on a hike to Rainbow Falls, a breathtaking 101-foot waterfall within the Inyo National Forest. The trail is accessible during the summer and early fall before the snow sets in, offering a rewarding hike with a stunning natural feature as your destination. The journey to the falls is just as picturesque, with opportunities to spot local wildlife and enjoy the lush forest scenery.

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05 Relax at the Hot Creek Geological Site

Hot Creek Geological Site

Unwind at the Hot Creek Geological Site, where naturally heated water flows through hot springs and fumaroles. The geological wonders are a sight to behold and provide a relaxing soak during the cooler fall days. This area is not only a place for relaxation but also an educational experience where visitors can learn about the geothermal forces that shape the Eastern Sierra.

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06 Visit the Devil's Postpile National Monument

Devil's Postpile National Monument

Marvel at the unique geological formations at Devil's Postpile National Monument. The towering basalt columns are a must-see, and the monument is open from summer through October, weather permitting. The symmetry and sheer size of the columns are a testament to the natural forces at work in the region, and the surrounding trails offer more exploration and stunning views of the Ritter Range.

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07 Enjoy a round of golf at Sierra Star Golf Course

Tee off at Sierra Star Golf Course, the highest golf course in California. The summer greenery and fall colors make for a picturesque round of golf amidst the beauty of the Sierra Nevada. The course is renowned for its challenging layout and well-kept fairways, providing a premium golfing experience at an elevation that adds an extra dimension to the game.

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08 Attend the Mammoth Festival of Beers and Bluesapalooza

Join the fun at the Mammoth Festival of Beers and Bluesapalooza, an annual event featuring craft beers and live blues music. Held in the summer, it's a perfect way to enjoy the local culture and festivities. The festival attracts beer aficionados and music lovers from all over, creating a vibrant atmosphere that celebrates the best of Mammoth's community spirit.

09 Take a horseback ride through the wilderness

Woman horseback riding in autumn Sitikka / Getty Images

Saddle up for a horseback ride through the scenic wilderness surrounding Mammoth. Guided tours are available throughout the summer and into the fall, offering a unique perspective on the area's natural beauty. Riding through the trails, you'll be treated to views of majestic mountains, wildflower meadows, and maybe even a glimpse of local wildlife like deer or bears.

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10 Go rock climbing in the Eastern Sierra

Eastern Sierra

Challenge yourself with rock climbing in the Eastern Sierra. With numerous climbing spots suitable for all levels, the summer and fall months provide the ideal conditions for this exhilarating sport. The region is known for its granite cliffs and crags, offering climbers a variety of routes that range from easy ascents to expert-level pitches.

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11 Experience the Night Sky at a Star Party

The clear skies above Mammoth make for exceptional stargazing. Attend a star party at the Mammoth Mountain Observatory during the summer to witness the awe-inspiring celestial sights. These events are hosted by knowledgeable astronomers who guide visitors through the wonders of the universe, making it an educational and magical experience for all ages.

12 Sample local cuisine at Mammoth Food and Wine Experience

Indulge in the flavors of the region at the Mammoth Food and Wine Experience. This summer event showcases local chefs and winemakers, offering a taste of the high Sierra culinary scene. The event not only highlights the gastronomic delights but also provides cooking demonstrations and wine tasting seminars for a comprehensive epicurean adventure.

13 Take part in the Mammoth Gran Fondo

Cyclists can join the Mammoth Gran Fondo, a premier cycling event that takes place in early fall. The ride features stunning views of the mountains and is a highlight for the cycling community. The course takes riders through some of the most scenic parts of the Eastern Sierra, with distances that cater to both casual riders and seasoned cyclists.

14 Witness the fall colors on a nature walk

hiking in mammoth

As summer transitions to fall, the foliage in Mammoth turns to vibrant hues of orange, red, and yellow. Take a leisurely nature walk to fully appreciate the changing seasons and the spectacular display of fall colors. The area offers a variety of trails that meander through the forest and along streams, providing a peaceful retreat to observe the autumn transformation.

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15 Embark on a photography expedition

taking a selfie in mammoth

Capture the essence of Mammoth's landscapes with a photography expedition. The diverse terrain, from mountain vistas to serene lakes, provides endless opportunities for photographers of all levels. Fall is particularly photogenic with its tapestry of colors, and local workshops are often available to help you hone your skills and take home stunning images of your visit.

Mammoth, CA, is a treasure trove of activities for every type of traveler. From the adrenaline-pumping adventures on mountain trails to the serene moments by alpine lakes, there's something for everyone in this mountain paradise. As the seasons change, the landscape transforms, offering new and exciting ways to explore the natural beauty of Mammoth. Whether you visit in the warmth of summer or the crisp air of fall, your time in Mammoth is sure to be filled with memorable experiences and breathtaking sights. The community's commitment to preserving the environment and celebrating the outdoors makes Mammoth an ideal destination for those looking to connect with nature.

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