Here and Now: Mammoth Mountain, California

Here and Now: Mammoth Mountain, California

WORDS & PHOTOS • CHRISTIAN PONDELLA (@christianpondella)

There was a lot of hype and news about this storm that hit Mammoth and California late last week. Whatever you want to call it: a Pineapple Express, an Atmospheric River (AR event) or just a classic Sierra storm that comes off the Pacific, brought nearly 50 inches of snow in two days to Mammoth. High winds, heavy moisture content and Sierra Cement plastered the mountain, making boulders disappear and turning cliffs into ski lines. The storm last week was like many we have had in the past, and the excitement and stoke is the same today as it was thirty-plus years ago. As the storm hits, you turn on the porch light and look out the window every twenty minutes to see the snow piling up. Wake up early and dig your truck out and hit the hill hoping Mother Nature (and ski patrol) will let you ride the exciting lifts. There’s several days of this before the storm finally blows through allowing access to the top of the mountain and to new lines and shapes to ski.

Hopping the cat with Mammoth Ski Patrol on their way to mitigate in-bounds avalanches.
Early morning dynamite.
Clean canvas at Mammoth.
Local athlete Bernie Rosow sends one to start the day.
Lift line lineups.
Pushin' snow at the summit.
The mighty Sierra Nevada Range looming after the storm.