Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Mammoth Photo Diary

Mammoth was a trip filled with truly natural beauty, new revelations, hilarious best-friend moments, and a rejuvenated sense of being.  To me, there is really nothing more gratifying than being outdoors, surrounded by nature.
Here are some photos from my weekend getaway to Mammoth Mountain with descriptions below.

Maggie and I left Los Angeles for Mammoth on Friday at around 7pm.  We both had work during the day, so a night-drive was our only option if we wanted to be awake for a day of skiing at 7:30am the next morning.  We made pretty good time, and only made one stop for gas near Mt. Whitney.
The Mammoth house was cozy & inviting (so cozy that we both ended up passing out on the couch that night even though there were 2 huge beds we could have slept in).
The next morning we woke up early & had an intense stretching session followed by coffee and eggs.
The house was conveniently located about 5 minutes walking-distance from the gondola that takes you up to Canyon Lodge at the bottom of the slopes.  Unfortunately, I couldn't really bring my camera up with me while skiing, so imagination will have to suffice in lieu of the lack of actual ski photos.  We rented skis, boots (I still think it's funny to watch people figure out how to walk like a normal human while wearing ski boots) & poles from the Lodge and waited in line for our first ski run of the day.
I hadn't been skiing since I was 13, so it felt really strange trying to figure out how I was never freaked out by the idea of going really fast down a giant mountain of ice when I was younger...because to be honest, it seemed pretty scary this time.  Maggie, of course, fearlessly descended down the mountain like a pro, and I made sure to close my eyes while watching her because it was way too scary.
My boots were incredibly tight (I had no other option but to deal with it), and it definitely made things more difficult in the beginning of the day.  Eventually, I got used to them and was able to enjoy the exhilaration of skiing (albeit at the embarrassing pace of an old lady).  I skied by myself for the second half of the day (Maggie was too advanced for me to keep up), and it was really enjoyable to be alone in the quiet of the Mountain.  I made many stops on different runs just so I could take-in the amazing views of the surrounding snow-capped mountains.  It felt really liberating to actually be doing something challenging & enjoyable at my own pace for once (as opposed to work/school/the hectic daily life of living in Los Angeles).
After a long day on the slopes, we each took a much-needed bath & napped at the house.  Later, we went out and spent way too much money on dinner (including Maggie's first ostrich egg shooter).
We attempted to go to a bar after dinner, without realizing that Ski Lodge bars are the snow-equivalent of the Jersey Shore.  After being asked if I wanted to dance/join some random table of Snowboard Bro's (complete with popped-collars & stupid facial hair), we decided to get the hell out of there and go to sleep.
Last summer, Maggie's (amazing, inspirational, hilarious, cowboy) Dad passed away while on vacation in Mammoth.  On Sunday morning, we woke up and drove to the site where some of his ashes were placed.  The snow-banks were too high to reach the actual tree of his site (we attempted to reach the tree, but ended up both getting stuck thigh-deep in snow and having to hilariously try to help each other try to get out).  Instead, we took in the crisp, pine-scented air & left him some notes drawn in the snow.  I thought that it would be difficult for Mags to visit her Dad's site, but it was seriously so quiet, perfect & beautiful where we were standing that all we could do was smile & enjoy being there.  It felt really good.
On the drive back to Los Angeles, we stopped at a few of the small towns along the way (Bishop, Big Pine, Lone Pine).  We bought (expensive!) jerky at a smoked meat shop in Bishop that kind of blew my mind.
I also took way too many pictures of my newest obsession: small town typography. The lettering in these places is always so good!  I seriously took 50+ more photos of type, but I chose some of my favorites for this post.  (Also picked out my favorite windshield bug catastrophe photo, which I think looks like a sign of the horns. Pretty appropriate).
The drive home was full of amazing sunsets/crazy colors reflected on mountains/lots of mad-libs.
This past week has not only made me feel extremely lucky to live in the natural wonder that is California, but has also made me realize that I'm glad I don't take my life for granted.

1 comment:

  1. wow the mountains look beautiful! great photos!