There are a few changes and improvements coming to Mammoth this season.
A new Chair 5!
This is the one I am most excited about. The old Chair 5 is being replaced with a modern high speed quad cutting the ride time in half. The bottom has been realigned to link up with Coyote making things safer and easier in general. It will be interesting to see what impact the new lift will have on traffic around the mountain but it provides a quick option for skiing from Canyon to Main Lodge and avoids the Stump Alley (Chair 2) bottle neck. Purists might argue that chair 5 will get tracked out super quick but it does now anyway. The new Chair 5 will be called the High-Five Express.
Electronic RFID Gates
Electronic RFID gates are being installed at all access points on the mountain. If you have skied in Europe you will be familiar with these but essentially you have an RFID pass that opens a gate allowing you onto a lift – no more waiting for a liftie to scan your pass. They introduced these at Mt Hutt in New Zealand last year. One great use for them at Mt Hutt was that it tracked your skiing so you could log on to a website and see how much vertical you skied for the day. Unfortunately not all lifts at Mammoth will have the gates so this will not be possible at Mammoth – at least this season. However, you will be able to load up new days on your pass over the Internet.
Purchase of Sledz tube park
Mammoth Mountain has purchased Sledz Tube Park located halfway up Minaret Rd. I’m not sure what improvements are in store for this season but it will definitely something to keep your eye on for the future. It has been renamed Woolly’s Adventure Summit Tube Park.
Mammoth has done a great job to secure additional air service into Mammoth for the winter. You can now fly from Orange County, San Diego as well as San Francisco, San Jose and of course Los Angeles. Flying to Mammoth is a great option as you don’t have to worry about a car and you can be skiing within an hour of landing. The downside is that some flights get cancelled during storms.
Repaint of Terrain Park
The traditional pink features of Mammoth’s terrain park are gone. They have been repainted for some reason.
There is a new company looking after the food at Mammoth. The jury will be out to see if things change with what they offer. I think the food at Mammoth has been ok but there is always room for improvement. Hopefully they won’t get rid of the cheese pizza!
On a food note there is a new restaurant opening up in town next to Rafters. The Red Lantern will be open in time for winter offering fine Chinese dining. I love Chinese food so look forward to chowing down on some soon.