Mammoth Lakes is where I choose to spend Mya’s sixth birthday with her. I’d heard how pet friendly it was and it didn’t disappoint. If you didn’t know Mammoth Lakes is located almost central on the east side of California, high up in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. It’s about a 5 hour drive from Los Angeles, San Francisco and Las Vegas. The town itself has an elevation of about 2400 meters with peaks over 4000 meters high surrounding it. The area itself has beautiful forests and lakes, making it a perfect place for outdoor enthusiasts to visit or live and attracting many skiers (Mammoth Mountain is often one of the first and last mountains to open and close their winter operations), snowboarders, mountain bikers, climbers hikers, water enthusiasts and fisherman.
We were fortunate enough to be able to stay at the Sierra Nevada Resort and Spa which is located right in the centre of town. It’s really conveniently located and only a short drive to Mammoth Mountain and the Lake Basin. It’s had everything we needed and I can see it being an ideal place to bring the family. Not only is it pet friendly but it has it’s very own mini golf park, pool, one of the biggest spas I’ve seen, some great communal areas (where Mya had a birthday party), restaurants, bars and even a day spa for when you need a massage after a long adventure. When I list these things I’m not talking about the town, Sierra Nevada Resort and Spa has them all. As for our hotel room, it was really spacious, had one of the biggest showers we’ve seen, kitchen, fireplace and even had an adjoining door to the room next door for families. The staff here have been fantastic and have offered so many great suggestions. If you are looking for a place to stay, we highly recommend them.
The team at Sierra Nevada Resort and Spa put me in touch with Sierra Dog Ventures, who run doggy day care sessions with a twist. They utilise GPS trackers for new dogs and take the dogs out off leash on adventures hiking. Often the dogs will have Ruffwear backpacks on them, which the team at Sierra Dog Ventures fill with the trash they find along the way. This helps the dogs to feel more valued within their pack and helps keep the local environment clean. I loved the fact that not only do they offer a great dog minding service, to allow you to go skiing, mountain biking or to get a massage. But they also exercise and stimulate your pup and protect the environment at the same time. Mya was so happy when she got back and was super affectionate towards the team at Sierra Dog Ventures, so I know she approves of them.
There are so many different activities to do in the Mammoth Lakes area, however we only had three days to explore and couldn’t do them all. I really wanted to be able to go mountain biking with Mya and we were told the perfect place for it would be the Shady Rest Reserve. It’s only a 5 minute drive out of town. As I lost my mountain bike a few weeks earlier, the team at Footloose Sports who are just down the road from the Sierra Nevada Resort set me up. They had a variety of bike styles on offer and after no time, I was ready to go. I’m told dogs are required to be on lead in the park area, but otherwise they just need to be under effective voice control. The tracks we hit were pretty mellow, but it wasn’t about me and after an hour and a half of riding, Mya was exhausted.
Mya and I decided to go for a hike and explore the Lake Basin. We drove around Lake Mary, which looked like it had some great camping and fishing. There was even a boat and paddle board rental shop there. We then made our way to Lake George, which was a little quieter. From there we left the car behind and hiked to Lake Barrett and TJ Lake. I’ve been told the same rules apply for dogs, they are welcome to join you and just need to be under effective control, so it’s upto you if you have them on or off lead. Just be careful, although we didn’t need to worry about snakes, there are black bears in the area and depending on the time of year, they might still have cubs with them. One of the dogs we met along our hike had a bear bell, which I thought was a great idea. I thought the area was absolutely stunning and loved seeing the mountains overlooking the lakes. I definitely recommend checking it out.
We started off the morning by visiting Mammoth Mountain Resort together and taking the scenic gondola ride to the top. The gondola is dog friendly over summer and Mya and I enjoyed taking in some of the spectacular views. Unfortunately Mya isn’t allowed on the mountain bike trails at Mammoth Mountain. Fortunately for me, the team at Sierra Dog Ventures has a whole pack of dogs for Mya to play with whilst I went for a ride. What I found was that they had some great trails for riders of all abilities and a skills park to help build on your skills. I really wish I had more time than just the afternoon there as I had so much fun.
Visit: Visit Mammoth Lakes | @VisitMammoth
Stay: The Sierra Nevada Resort and Spa | @SierraNevadaResort
Play: Mammoth Mountain | @MammothMountain
Sporting Equipment Rentals: Footloose Sports @FootlooseSports