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Best things to do in Mammoth with kids in the winter

In the winter, Mammoth Lakes, California is a wonderland with a ton of activities for families to enjoy. From skiing to snowshoeing, there's something for everyone in this cute little mountain town. Here are some of the best things to do with kids in Mammoth Lakes during the winter season.

Young kid trying to snowboard for the first time at Mammoth Mountain
Our 3 year old ready to shred at Mammoth Mountain

Hit the slopes at Mammoth Mountain!

Of course, the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of Mammoth Mountain is skiing and snowboarding. Mammoth Mountain is a world-class ski resort with over 3,500 acres of skiable terrain, 25 lifts, and an average of 400 inches of snow each season (at the current time while writing this, Mammoth is hitting snow records with over. 600" and just extended their season to late July AT LEAST)!

We were initially intimidated by this because us adults are not big-time skiers (I'm an East Coaster that grew up skiing on hills), and our 3 and 6 year old kids were trying out snowboarding for the first time. But I was so pleased with how kid and beginner-friendly the mountain was as well!


Mammoth offers lessons for all ages and abilities, making it a sweet place to learn how to ski or snowboard. We put our kids into snowboarding lessons for the long weekend and I was impressed by the instructors, their patience, and their ability to work with and teach young kids.

For beginners, I would recommend lessons at the Main Lodge. We were able to experience lessons at both Main Lodge and Eagle Canyon, and Main Lodge had a chiller vibe with less people.

Young child standing with his snowboard instructor in front of a snowy mountain.
Our son and his snowboarding instructor

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

Explore the snow covered trees and winter landscape by snowshoeing or cross-country skiing through Mammoth Lakes. The Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center has 19+ miles of groomed trails and offer guided tours and rentals for families.


We weren't able to snowmobile, but Mammoth also offers snowmobiling tours if you're looking to pass on the slopes one day and instead explore the Eastern Sierra's backcountry. Mammoth Mountain offers guided tours for all ages and skill levels.

Gondola ride to the top of Mammoth Mountain

The gondola ride to the top of Mammoth Mountain, at 11,053 ft, was the highlight of our trip. The kids loved watching all the skiers and snowboarders on the mountain on our way up and we were all gawking over the views. The gondola leaves from Main Lodge, and you can either use your lift ticket if you have one, or buy a scenic gondola ride pass. On Mammoth Mountain's website, they create package deals if you do multiple activities, so make sure you get that discount!

Once you're at the top, brave the wind and cold and get a photo at the sign.

Then warm up inside at the Eleven53 Interpretive Center. This was such a cool little museum with beautiful views. When we were there, there was a nice gentleman working there super excited to share information about the mountain and the animals and nature surrounding it.

If you're at the top around lunchtime, there's also the Eleven53 Cafe that offers food and drinks.


Woolly's Tube Park is a super rad way to get some speed on an inner tube! A bonus is that they have a magic carpet to bring you back to the top. The park has multiple lanes for tubing and even has a separate area for young children to enjoy.

Hot Springs

One of my favorite things about Mammoth are the natural hot springs. Wild Willy's Hot Springs is our go-to and is a popular spot for families. It's pretty easy to access and even though it's popular, there's a decent amount of space and pools to soak. Please note that the road is not accessible when it's snowy.


Transparency is cool! Mammoth Mountain hosted our activities and lessons while here so I could write and tell you all about it!


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