Summer Resorts 2002-Far West: Mammoth Mountain, Calif.


Mammoth Mountain, Calif.

Mammoth has been on the fat-tire crowd's "A" list ever since mountain bike racers bombed the gnarly Kamikaze Downhill for the 1987 World Championships. More than 80 miles of singletrack¿from technical challenges such as Ricochet to the gentle Paper Route¿lure both hardcores and cruisers to the resort's expansive slopes. The scene gets even sweeter this year with the new Twin Lakes trail, which winds from the far west side of Mammoth to the base of Twin Lakes, where riders can hook up to a network of town-maintained paths. Also new is lift-served biking off Eagle Express, the closest chair to the town of Mammoth Lakes.

Saddle-sore? Hop the Red's Meadow shuttle at the Mammoth Mountain Inn, which can whisk you to the must-see natural wonders of Devil's Postpile National Monument and Rainbow Falls. Or outsmart trout in the nearby Owens River, using skills gained in Mammoth's Orvis Flyfishing School. Golfers gravitate to the 18-hole Sierra Star Golf Club, while climbers hone their technique on the 32-foot manmade rock before joining the Southern Yosemite Guide Service for a day on real Sierra stone. Hit Mammoth just right, however, and these will all be afternoon activities: Mammoth often holds its snow until well after Memorial Day. ¿Kellee Katagi

DON'T MISS Bluesapalooza, Aug. 2-3, a laid-back celebration of blues and brews in an outdoor arena. 760-934-0606;

best deal "Stay and Play" packages include lodging at Mammoth Mountain Inn or Juniper Springs Lodge and a round at Sierra Star for as little as $73 per person, per night. 800-626-6684;