One for the record books!

Mammoth Lakes has received record snow for the month of December! Up on the mountain there is 12 feet and counting. Town has gotten a bit less… maybe ten feet! Word from the weather report: it’s not going to let up until Tuesday, and then start again for Christmas! Let it snow!

mammoth car dig
Digging out the car… it was totally cleared off at 10pm the night before.

Driving on Minaret Road, R3 chain controls! Only saw one car stuck.



3 Responses to “One for the record books!”

  1. Thanks for the updates as always. Curious were/are chains really required and necessary on 4wd vehicles and they were enforcing R-3?

    That’s one dilemma I always have when going up there. They list ‘chains required all vehicles’ often when it’s not at R-3, the highest level. I’ve been up there the last two big storms and didn’t really notice any 4wds with chains on though it was dumping feet.

    I have a 4wd with M+S (not snow studded) tires but I don’t want to get a ticket or an accident due to icy conditions. It seems like you can get away without on a good 4wd with M+S tires, and the times when you can’t well you just won’t know until you hit a bad patch.

    In town it seems like locals with 4wd never use chains and it’s not enforced. Not sure coming up the 395 about the chp but I haven’t been stopped yet driving right by them when it’s been dumping and it was ‘chains required all vehicles’.

    Thinking about coming up late thursday night and hoping to get away w/o chains per usual.

    Any thoughts or comments


  2. Hi Daniel!

    As of 10am today, Caltrans reports only R2 chain controls (Chains are required on all vehicles except four wheel drive vehicles with snow tires on all four wheels) on 203 from Jct. 395 to Mammoth Mountain Inn. Only R1 from Bishop to 203.

    Weather for Thursday and Friday is looking fine with not much chance of snow, so I doubt you’d have any trouble without chains.

    The R3 was due, obviously, to the massive amounts of snow falling and the plows unable to adequately keep up. I was driving around town during this time in my AWD Subaru with snow tires and it handled fine. While technically anyone not obeying the R3 controls can be ticketed on the spot, I didn’t see or hear of this happening. More likely if one got stuck or caused any traffic problems and weren’t obeying R3, THEN they’d get the ticket.

    It sounds like the 395 is a different story though as I heard reports of all vehicles being stopped the other day and turned back if they didn’t have chains or 4WD with snow tires. I think the CHP are much stricter on their enforcing of chain controls. I carry chains in the car but haven’t used them yet. On the flip side there was chaos on the roads on Monday with people getting their cars stuck, all roads to Canyon Lodge were blocked for almost an hour. Just make sure you don’t get stuck!

    Hope you can make it up! Lots of snow….

  3. – i need something to keep the kids opecciud so they forget to fight! we’re going to play in the snow tomorrow. we had snowfall in the mountains close to our house (about a 40 minute drive). hope to get some nice pics.February 26, 2011 7:22 pm