A mountain resort town offering amenities and year-round mountain lake adventures.
In the Eastern Sierra Nevada mountains of California, Mammoth Lakes is a popular resort town known for outdoor recreation. It’s home to Mammoth Mountain, with more than 3,500 acres, a long ski season, and summertime lift-assisted mountain biking. The surrounding region is full of scenic Alpine lakes and streams, as well as a wide network of hiking trails ideal for biking and horseback riding. Campers have choices, from RV parks with full hookups and hot showers to Inyo National Forest campgrounds perfect for tent camping and more primitive RV camping.
To stay within walking distance of town and the Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center, head to Inyo’s Old Shady Rest Campground or New Shady Rest Campground. West of Mammoth Mountain, the Reds Meadow Valley offers easy access to Devils Postpile and Rainbow Falls and six campgrounds, including Inyo’s Pumice Flat, Minaret Falls, Agnew Meadows, and Reds Meadow campgrounds. South of town is Lake Mary, the largest in the area, with boat rentals, Lake Mary Campground, and nearby Coldwater Campground. Anglers flock to Twin Lakes Campground.
North of Mammoth Lakes, June Lake Loop circles four scenic lakes with six campgrounds. Further north, the small town of Lee Vining acts as the gateway to Yosemite National Park and Mono Lake. Choose from four campgrounds near Lee Vining Creek or several higher-elevation campgrounds around Alpine lakes. In Yosemite, five other campgrounds can be found along Tioga Road, including the popular Tuolumne Meadows Campground.
South of Mammoth Lakes is Convict Lake, one of the prettiest lakes in the region. Inyo’s Convict Lake Campground offers cabins, campsites, and picnic tables for an easy camping trip. Further east, Crowley Lake and Rock Creek offer trout fishing, with Forest Service and BLM campgrounds to choose from. Further south, the town of Bishop draws climbers for the great bouldering nearby.
Winter and summer are the most popular times at Mammoth Mountain, though the area sees visitors year-round. From June to September, only campers may access Reds Meadow Valley and Devils Postpile National Monument with their own vehicle. Everyone else must use the shuttle. Spring and fall are the best times for trout fishing, while fall colors in the area are worth checking out. Winter weather can create road access issues.