June Mountain Ski Resort To Re-Open For Winter 2013/2014

June Mountain will open for winter 2013-2014The management team for the June Mountain ski resort, located in northern California, announced plans to re-open later this year. The resort, which has long been a favorite amongst the locals, was closed for the summer season last year and remained that way throughout this past winter. But after a one year hiatus, June Mountain will return to action for the 2013/2014 ski season while ownership develops a plan for keeping it operational moving forward.

June Mountain is the sister resort of nearby Mammoth Mountain and boasts some impressive stats to draw in visitors. For instance, it averages about 250 inches of snowfall each season, with ski runs traditionally remaining open from December through April. It features seven chairlifts and 35 groomed trails, the longest of which is over two miles in length. Its 500 skiable acres features terrain that is suitable for a variety of experience levels although the resort’s options for beginning skiers and riders has long been a part of its appeal.

The closure of June Mountain last summer was of particular concern with the local community. The resort had been in operation for 50 years and it helped bring revenue to the small towns in the area. Its return to operation will be a welcome boost later this year and management says there are plans to potentially open a new lift and expand the snowmaking capacity.

Once June Mountain does open again, holders of the Mammoth Mountain MVP season pass will gain access to the slopes just as they have in the past. This is a nice way to extend the value of that pass even further, expanding on the options that Mammoth already offers.

[Photo Credit: Mammoth Mountain]

Fresh Snow Extends Colorado Ski Season

Colorado ski resorts remain openIf you’re a skier or snowboarder who is reluctant to see the season come to an end, I’ve got good news for you. April snow showers have continued to dump fresh powder across the state of Colorado and as a result, several of the resorts there have either extended their seasons or elected to re-open for the weekend. That means that even though the calendar now says it’s spring, there is still time to hit the slopes for a bit longer.

This past week saw a big snowstorm sweep across the Rocky Mountains, depositing quite a bit of snow on some of Colorado’s most popular resorts. For instance, Aspen Highlands received 13 inches of fresh powder, while nearby Snowmass recorded 14 inches, as did Silverton Mountain. Monarch picked up more than 11 inches as well, while Arapahoe Basin, Winter Park and a host of others all received several inches too.

This late season snowfall has been a boon to the resorts, many of which have reopened for the weekend. The following destinations are still offering skiers and snowboarders a chance to hit the slopes through tomorrow: Aspen Mountain, Copper Mountain, Eldora, Monarch, Silverton, Snowmass and Steamboat. Additionally, Aspen Highlands and Winter Park will remain open through April 21, while Loveland’s season extends to May 5. A-Basin, which always has one of the longest seasons in North America, will remain open until June 2.

If you’re not quite done playing in the snow just yet and would like to use those skies or that snowboard one more time, then get yourself to Colorado where there is still some powder to shred.

[Photo Credit: Arapahoe Basin]

Mammoth Mountain Discounts Room Rates Based On Temperature

Mammoth Mountain offering discounted accommodations based on temperatureAs the spring weather spreads across North America, ski resorts are finding creative ways to lure visitors for some late season action on the slopes. Take for example Mammoth Mountain, which is offering discounted room rates based on the high temperature from the previous day. That means that as the mercury rises, the price of the room drops accordingly, giving guests bigger savings as a result.

Here’s how the deal works. Visitors must book a stay of at least two nights at Mammoth between the dates of April 14 and May 23. While there, they’ll receive a discount off the regular price of their accommodations that is equal to the highest temperature recorded at the Main Lodge – and posted on the Ski Patrol website – from the previous day. So, if the temperature hits 45ºF, guests at the lodge will get $45 off their price. If the following day the thermometer rises to 48ºF, they’ll get an additional $48 off the rate for a total savings of $93. All in all, a very simple way to get a cheap rate.

With nearly 300 inches of snowfall for the season, Mammoth still has a solid amount of powder on the ground. As of this writing, the resort is reporting a base depth of more than eight feet on the mountain and 5.5 feet at lower altitudes. The spring weather has been pleasant and crowds are often at a minimum this time of year, which makes it a great time to hit the slopes before the season officially comes to an end. We know that won’t happen before Memorial Day, but skiers and snowboarders will want to take advantage of every opportunity they can. After all, the off-season can be a very long one!

To book a stay click here and for a list of upcoming events at Mammoth click here.

[Photo: Mammoth Mountain]

Mammoth Mountain To Stay Open For Skiing Until At Least Memorial Day

Mammoth Mountain will remain open until at least Memorial DayIt has been a bountiful year for snow in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains, where big storms have continued to drop fresh powder all season long. In fact, it has been so good that Mammoth Mountain has already announced that it will be open for snowboarding and skiing at least until Memorial Day (May 27) and most likely beyond.

At the moment, Mammoth is boasting a base depth of snow that is measured at an astounding 7 to 15 feet depending on where you are on the resort’s 3500 skiable acres. All of that snow means that even though spring is here, it’ll take some time for it to melt away. And with the long-term forecasts calling for more cold weather and snowfall ahead, it’s likely that the resort will remain open into June.

Mammoth is well known for having one of the longest ski seasons in all of North America, but this year has the potential to expand that reputation even further. Regular visitors to the resort who grabbed a season pass in time for opening day last November have now been skiing for more than five months. And with the resort staying open at least until late May, I’d say they managed to get their money’s worth out of those passes.

If you’re not quite ready to put your skis or snowboard away just yet then the news of Mammoth’s extended winter will be welcome. With more than 158 runs, most of which are groomed, the resort has a little something for everyone from beginners to experts. Find out more about Mammoth Mountain, purchase lift tickets and book accommodations here.

[Photo Credit: Mammoth Mountain]

Mud Season Escapes: Where Ski Towns Go After The Snow

sayulitaThe countdown has begun; most ski resorts will be closing in roughly three to four weeks, and then they’ll temporarily become ghost towns. Welcome to mud season, the bi-annual, post-season time when businesses shutter and residents escape to hotter climes – usually (die-hards head to South America to chase the snow).

Be they lift op or millionaire, most locals have their favorite vacation spots – most of them affordable and south of the border. I’ve lived in my share of ski towns (and thus enjoyed mud season exodus), and there’s just no avoiding the fact that certain destinations are southerly extensions of the mountains. What can I say? Ski bums have great taste.

The following are some of the most popular places locals flock to for mud season. The good news is, you don’t need to live in a ski town, or even be a skier, to appreciate them. Book your tickets!

Sayulita, Nayarit, Mexico
Also known as “Telluride South.” There’s just no escaping your neighbors, clients and customers, but this sleepy fishing village has managed to retain its charm, despite being less than 30 miles from Puerto Vallarta. Main activities: slurping ice cream, scarfing fish tacos, reading on the beach and watching the sunset.

Costa Rica
Crested Butte loves it some CR, especially a specific treehouse community (started by former locals) called Finca Bellavista. Tamarindo, Jacó and Mal Pais are also popular beach getaways for the off-season ski crowd. What better place for winter thrill-seekers to transition to warm weather pursuits such as whitewater rafting, surfing and volcano bagging?sea turtle
Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Formerly known as the jumping off point for the ferry to Cozumel, Playa has become a bona fide resort, popular with families, couples and singles who desire a bit of luxury minus the crowds and squalor of Cancun.

Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Located close to Playa, this buzzy village is better known as the home of some of Mexico’s most spectacular Mayan ruins. Popular with the backpacker crowd thanks to beachfront bungalow and palapa accommodations (alas, camping isn’t as prevalent or permissible as it used to be); Tulum is now a target destination for food lovers making a pilgrimage to Hartwood Restaurant, a solar-run operation that specializes in locally-sourced, contemporized regional cuisine (note it’s closed March 18-April 3 for annual maintenance). Also, don’t miss the cenotes, or sinkholes, that dot the countryside; you can swim in their crystalline waters, or even explore them via scuba.

Caye Caulker, Belize
Both diving and hammock enthusiasts are drawn to this laid-back island in the Caribbean Sea. Lobster at 9,000 feet can’t compare to freshly-caught.

Hawaii
A popular destination for trade wind-craving ski town refugees, especially Oahu, Maui and Kauai, depending upon budget and inclination. The diversity of outdoor adventure and relative ease of getting there is the draw.

[Photo credits: Sayulita, Flickr user waywuei; sea turtle, Flickr user -NINETIMES-]