SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Mammoth Mountain is a world class ski resort. It has one of the longest ski seasons in North America. From November through the end of May, skiers and snowboarders of all levels enjoy all the area has to offer. Located along the east side of the Sierra Nevada Mountain range, it’s about a six-and-a-half-hour drive from San Diego.
Mammoth Mountain Skiing
In February 1980 Hal Clement got the plum assignment—a special report on Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort. It was a little too cold for the San Diego sports reporter, but he powered through and delivered this three-part series that is a total blast from skiing past.
Mammoth Mountain Part 1:
11,000 feet up at the top of the mountain, skiers told Hal why they enjoyed the sport. Challenging, creative, fun, and daring were some of the answers. Skiing has never been cheap, but in 1980 it was only $9 to rent skis, poles, and boots and $14 for lift tickets—still—Hal said it wasn’t cheap.
Mammoth Mountain Part 2:
Mammoth Lakes and ski bums: The population was around 8,000 and most of them were there to ski. Greg Dressen ditched the big city of Ontario and took a big pay cut to work at the Pioneer Market. Like so many, he was there to become a good skier. CBS 8 filmed him on the slopes, and it looked like his strategy was working. See wipeouts and successful landings on Hair Jump.
Mammoth Mountain Part 3:
Hal picked day three to ski. High winds and blowing snow didn’t stop him and the many brave sorts who didn’t let inclement weather spoil their fun. After getting fitted for gear, cold Hal—without hat—went to the lower slopes where beginners and intermediates hung out. He would not be trying out Hangman’s, Paranoids, or Varmint’s Nest. His form looked good on the Sesame Street slope. The story ends with Hal in front of a roaring fire with a hot beverage listening to live music. That’s the reward at the end of the day—thaw out and relax with friends in a warm lodge.
Ski resort on Palomar Mountain in San Diego 1966
Did you know there was a ski resort on Palomar Mountain in San Diego County? This film from the CBS 8 archives reveals the truth. There was a lot of excitement about this new resort but unfortunately, it didn’t last long. This article says it likely ceased operations in the winter of 1967.
Mammoth Mountain in the Sierra Nevada