SoCal has seen a lot of sun lately, but not enough to roast a promising early start for local ski resorts. Cool temperatures have allowed for substantial snow-making and resorts in local mountains are nearly at full steam.
Of course, the deepest stuff is always at Mammoth, a five-hour drive from Los Angeles, where early storm have dumped 6 feet of snow. The world-class hill currently boasts a 30-inch base at Main Lodge and 48 inches on the summit. Main, Canyon and Eagle lodges are all open, with access to 115 trails.
Closer to L.A., the San Bernardino resorts are boasting fresh, machine-groomed surfaces. Snow Summit and Bear Mountain in Big Bear Lake, have 12 to 26-inch bases. At Summit, chairs 1, 2 and 8 start at 8:30 am. Chair 3 goes at 9 am. Chairs 4, 7, 9 and moving carpets 1 and 3 start at 9:30 am. At Bear, Chairs 6, 7, 9 have been opening at 9 a.m. Chairs 2, 4 and the moving carpets 2, 3 open at 9:30 a.m.
Mountain High in Wrightwood, 90 minutes from downtown L.A., is reporting fair to good coverage, with 8- to 18-inch bases. Early season conditions do exist. Operating hours are 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. at the West Resort, with night skiing from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Mountain High’s North Pole Tubing Park is now open as well, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. seven days a week through Jan. 4, then Saturdays, Sundays. Two-hour tickets are $20.
Mt. Baldy has a 6- to 12-inch base, with chairs 2 and 3 now open, as well as its tubing park. The alpine resort is in the San Gabriel Mountains, an hour from downtown.
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