A few posts back, I touched briefly on our weekend trip to Mammoth and promised that I would go into further detail later. So, “later” is here. And here are the details:
It started when our dear friends Mel & Greg decided to tie the knot up north in Mammoth Lakes. If you haven’t been, I highly suggest you make a trip of it next time you’re up north. It doesn’t even matter what season it is – the town is covered with snow in the winter with some incredible skiing and snowboarding. And in the summer, the whole area explodes in green and the lakes are a deep blue, and the air smells like fresh pine trees, and there are endless opportunities for biking, hiking, swimming, and boating. It’s basically paradise.
But I digress.
So Mel and Greg decided to get married up in Mammoth, and therefore, bless all of us wedding guests with a weekend getaway in the mountains. And when that sort of thing happens, you have to just take full advantage of it. And so we did.
We left it to Lauren to book our group of eight an Air BnB, and then she had the great idea to find a dog-friendly one, so that we could bring the pups with us rather than boarding them somewhere for the whole weekend. We headed up after work on Thursday night, and it took us about five hours from Downtown LA. Traffic wasn’t bad. The roads are open once you get out of the initial city traffic, and so we threw on a Podcast while Marty dozed off in the backseat.
We got in about midnight to the cutest little Mammoth condo-cabin. It had three bedrooms downstairs, which slept two people each, and a pull-out couch upstairs, which slept two more. A kitchen, a living room, a hot tub, and two full bathrooms. The one living room wall was a giant sliding glass door that opened up to a deck and a view of tall pine trees. It had one of those big round dog beds sitting by the window, and Marty quickly made himself at home in the mornings. I think he was destined to be a mountain dog…
Alex woke up early on Friday morning (read as: Marty woke Alex up early on Friday morning) and grabbed everyone bagels and coffee from The Old New York Deli & Bakery Co. in the main square of Mammoth. I’ve had their bagels once before and they are super delicious. We actually stopped here again on Sunday morning and that time I had their breakfast sandwich on a bagel and it was awesome.
We took full advantage of our downtime, and lucky for us, Laur and Josh have a friend who actually lives and works in Mammoth! She and her fiancé have two dogs of their own, and so she was happy enough to be our tour guide on Friday! She took us on a nice hike along Lake Arrowhead where we could let the dogs all run free off leash. I loved it so much. We crossed a little marsh section and found our way up to this awesome cliff jumping spot. The water was absolutely freezing, and after a little hesitation, they all talked me into jumping in after them. The coldness literally took my breath away, but when I came up for air I had three pups swimming right towards me, so all was well 😉 My recommendations for this hike? Bring a towel. Don’t wear shoes that you don’t want covered in mud. Bring extra socks. And pile on the bug spray. If you don’t remember all of that, at least remember the last tidbit.
We had lunch and some brews at Mammoth Brewing Company. The food is delicious and comes in giant portions, so maybe split a meal before you decide to get a meal each. I had the goat cheese flatbread pizza and tasted some of the nachos and was impressed with both. And all the beer is great, you can’t go wrong there!
We went to a Friday night cocktail hour at one of the smaller lodges hosted by Mel and Greg. And on Saturday morning we all grabbed breakfast at The Stove. The staff here was super friendly, but expect to wait in line a little bit…this place is popular! The food was bangin’ and also came in pretty big portions. I’d definitely come back here.
We spent Saturday morning and early afternoon at Horseshoe Lake on Lake Mary Road because it’s the only lake where dogs are allowed to swim legally. We loved it so much that we spent our Sunday afternoon here as well before we headed back to LA. Another cool thing about Mammoth is their open-container policy. Which means you can happily enjoy your beers at the lake with your friends and pups without having to worry about hiding anything! We made friends with another group who set up near us – they had the whole shebang…bikes, kayaks, and standup paddleboards! Marty and I explored the trail going around the lake a little bit, where he enjoyed splashing through some of the little creeks that run into the lake. And Stone enjoyed his first time swimming!! I don’t really know what’s better than spending an afternoon in the fresh mountain air with your best friends, drinking beers and swimming with the pups. It was definitely my happy place.
The wedding itself was absolutely incredible and beautiful and perfect. The ceremony was held about halfway up the mountain at McCoy Station, so we got to ride the Gondola all the way up! After the ceremony, the Cocktail Hour was held even further up the mountain (another Gondola ride) and it had the most incredible views. I think the icing on the cake was that there was still a little bit of snow left even at the end of July, but the weather was warm! I don’t think there will ever be another time that we’d be able to experience that. The Reception was held back down again at McCoy, and I still can’t get over how wonderful the entire evening was. Mel and Greg are the kind of couple who just light up a room. They have so many friends, and that’s simply a testament to their character. They make everyone feel like family, and actually the first time I really got to spend time with Greg was when they brought me up to spend a winter weekend with them in Mammoth, and Greg (along with Julie) taught me how to snowboard! Mel was the very first friend I made in LA, and I owe a lot of my friendships today to her ❤
I know I always say this, but I feel so strongly about it…I feel so incredibly lucky that I get to experience so many beautiful places and that we live so close that we’re able to make these kinds of trips. But these places wouldn’t mean as much to me if I wasn’t experiencing them with people whom I love so much and who bring out the best in any situation. Alex and I are always talking about how grateful we are for our little California family.
And so that concludes our Mammoth Weekend Getaway! I’m hoping that we’ll be able to make it back up at least once this winter, because I’d love for Alex to teach me how to ski! Or even this fall because I have my eye on a few of the many bike trails 😉 Thanks for reading!