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22 Nov 2022
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Mammoth Vacation Planning

Celebrating Thanksgiving in Mammoth is quite the experience! And you’re probably wondering how to make the most of your holiday weekend here. 

This list of tips for enjoying Thanksgiving in Mammoth are sure to make you feel like home up in the mountains.

Plan your grocery visit

If you’re planning on cooking a Thanksgiving meal in a Mammoth Mountain Reservations rental, the good news is you’ll have access to a kitchen with plenty of cooking supplies. But, you’ll still need to head to a grocery store in town for ingredients. 

With two main grocery stores to choose from, Vons and Grocery Outlet, you can imagine that they’ll be extra busy leading up to Thanksgiving. And, even though our grocery stores do their best to schedule plenty of employees during the holiday rush, you should still plan to spend more time than usual braving the crowds. 

Remember, also, that holiday hours will be in effect on Thanksgiving Day! Vons is scheduled to close at 3pm and Grocery Outlet will stay open until 5pm.

Consider easy alternatives

It’s hard to beat a traditional Thanksgiving feast, complete with a turkey and all the fixings. But, a meal like that takes a lot of time to prepare! And you don’t want to miss out on the Mammoth experience because you’re spending hours in the kitchen. 

Consider swapping out the classics for some quicker alternatives. Roast chicken, for instance, cooks up much faster than turkey. And, you can swap out homemade family recipes for convenient options like boxed stuffing and canned cranberry sauce. 

Remember to use the high altitude instructions

Some of the staples of Thanksgiving will bake differently up here in the mountains. Here are a few things to know about cooking at high altitude:

  • Water boils at a lower temperature here, so you’ll have to cook those potatoes a little longer.

  • Air pressure is lower at high elevation, which leads to longer cook times in general.

  • Gases don’t expand as much at sea level as they do here, so homemade breads should be given shorter rise times.

  • Liquids evaporate more quickly at high altitude, which can make baking tricky.

You can avoid holiday hang-ups like dense dinner rolls and runny pumpkin pies by seeking out recipes written for high altitude.

Let someone else cook!

Something we always recommend to guests is that they let someone else do the Thanksgiving cooking entirely! Not only can you order pre-made feasts from Vons and Shea Schat’s Bakery, but there are also a number of local restaurants that offer dine-in Thanksgiving dinners. Here are a few places where you can get a holiday feast:

  • Mountainside Bar & Grill

  • Mammoth Mountain Main Lodge

  • Smokeyard BBQ & Chop Shop

  • The Brasserie at Mammoth Rock & Bowl

  • Lakefront Restaurant at Tamarack

  • Austria Hof

  • Petra’s Bistro & Wine

  • Liberty Sports Bar & Grill

  • Toomey’s

Make sure to call ahead of time to book your pre-made dinner or reservation!

Bundle up for the Turkey Trot

The Turkey Trot is an annual tradition to squeeze in some exercise before enjoying a day of football and food. Because this event starts bright and early at 8:45am (with bib pick-up starting at 7:30am), it’s bound to be a cold one! So bundle up in your best Thanksgiving-themed running gear. Don’t worry, there will be hot chocolate at the end of the 2km race to warm you back up.

Get a few runs in at Mammoth Mountain

It wouldn’t be the holidays in Mammoth without a few early morning runs at the mountain. As one of the few ski resorts in the country with the majority of runs open right now, you won’t want to miss out on some amazing Thanksgiving-day skiing or snowboarding.

In fact, Main Lodge and Canyon Lodge are currently open, with Eagle Lodge opening specifically for the Thanksgiving weekend. So get out there!

Do Black Friday the Mammoth Way

People are drawn to Mammoth Lakes as a way to escape the fast-paced atmosphere of big cities. And without Big Box stores, we’re the perfect oasis from the madness of Black Friday.

If you are looking to get something unique for your loved ones this holiday season, you can spend the day after Thanksgiving browsing some of our local shops. But don’t worry, you won’t have to elbow strangers or fight over the last flatscreen tv. We do Black Fridays here with a much more relaxed attitude.

Head to the Village for the tree lighting ceremony

Looking for a lovely way to finish off Thanksgiving and start looking forward to the Christmas season? Head to the Village for our annual tree lighting ceremony! Santa and our beloved Wooly will be there for pictures, and you can enjoy some live music and everything else the Village has to offer. 

The tree lighting will take place at 6:30pm, but you’ll want to get there early to join in on the festivities.

Share your photos with us!

Thanksgiving is all about family, and our team at Mammoth Mountain Reservations is happy to have you as part of ours! So, don’t forget to tag us in your social media posts as you feast, explore, and enjoy this special holiday in the mountains!


Thanksgiving selfie