"Not all those who wander are lost." – J.R.R. Tolkien

Ride Report: Snow Biking Old Mammoth Rd.

Looking for a quick cardio workout that’s easy to access?  Here ya go.  A one mile sustained climb, takes you up to Lake Mary Rd., where unfortunately you have to turn back.  Lake Mary Rd is groomed, so off limits to fat bikes.  Hopefully in the future, we’ll be able to link this ride with much more terrain.  However, for now, catch your breath, admire the views, and enjoy the fun descent back to your car.

  • Ride Type:  Out and Back
  • Difficulty:  Moderate (one strenuous climb)
  • Terrain/Conditions: 100% snow, firm OSV packed, softening up from the sun
  • Time since last snowfall: More than one week
  • Month & Ride Start Time:  February, 1:15pm
  • Temperature: 50 degrees
  • Access: From town, take Old Mammoth Rd. until the road closure and snow is not cleared anymore (near the intersectoin of La Verne St.)  Park off to the side.
  • Length: 1.9 miles
  • Approx. Time: 1/2 hour – 45 minutes
  • Lowest Elevation: 7,845′
  • Highest Elevation: 8,360′
  • Total Elevation Gain: 385′
  • Bike Recommendation:  Fat Bike

There really is no “warmup” on this ride.  You start pedaling off the get go.  About a 1/4 mile in, you turn left and the pitch increases as you reach the “Mammoth Rock Trail” trailhead (one of the best dirt singletrack mtb trails in the summer).  Depending on how much snowshoe traffic it’s seen, you might be able to ride out on it a little bit, and catch some amazing views of town, Snowcreek, The White Mountains, The Sherwins, and Mammoth Rock.  Once you get back on Old Mammoth Rd, keep climbing!!  There’s a big switchback (you’ll see the sign for the Panorama Dome Trail– another great summer mtb ride- both this and Mammoth Rock Trail are a part of the Mammoth Lakes Big Friggin Loop) before it straightens out again, and the pitch mellows for the final climb to Lake Mary Rd.

*Note:  Sometimes the snowmobiles carve a direct, steeper path cutting off the big switchback as well as another trail staying on the road.  Usually it’s best to stay on the road climbing up, but come down the direct route, cutting off the switchback on the descent.  It’s a little more fun.

This route is frequented by snowmobiles (thanks for packing it down), snowshoers, hikers, and nordic skiers.  So, please be on your best behavior, and yield to everybody.  You can link this ride with The Meadows Ride to get some more mileage.  You’ll just have to ride all the way up Old Mammoth Rd. on pavement, which is kind of a bummer.

old_mammoth_rd_map old_mammoth_rd_profile

Parked at the big switchback, with Mammoth Rock in the background.

Parked at the big switchback, with Mammoth Rock in the background.

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2 responses

  1. Pingback: Ride Report: Snow Biking The Meadows Behind Snowcreek |

  2. Pingback: Ride Report: Mammoth Rock Trail |

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