WEATHER, TIMING, ANTICIPATION: SoCalers know that the middle of September can be the time of year most resembling a hot plate 'round the region. That warm-warm-warm desert air is rising, breezes feel as though they're at a standstill, or nearly, through city corridors, and temperature records are beat (or at least tested). It's just about then that some of our mountain resorts start looking a few months ahead, to late fall and to winter, and to snowier, cool-down thoughts. The timing is fortuitous; we want to anticipate days of mittens and sweating a little less (yep, a run down a ski hill isn't totally sweat-free). Mammoth Mountain is ready to stoke those anticipatory fires, or, if not fires, then dreams of colder days, with some just-announced deals.
LIFT TICKETS FOR A SONG: Every person with a pair of ski poles wants to find a sweet deal on getting up the hill, since they've personally got the "down the hill" part well-covered. Mammoth lift tickets are starting at sixty seven bucks a day, and that's "from opening all to closing day." That's when you purchase multiple days, but if you want to go up for just a Friday or Saturday? You're looking at $76. The resort reports being stoked by rumors of an El Niño year, which could bring a good amount of precipitation to the Sierra. Some good rain is the wish of many people, skiers and everybody, so let's all cross our fingers and ski poles on that one.
FOR ALL... those suh-weet up-the-mountain early season deals, schuss this way, winter-dreamers. And if you need more anticipation, grab a fat red marker and circle November 15 on the calendar: That is, for the time being, opening day.