With all the whacky weather patterns impacting our four seasons, why shouldn't we be able to ski until July? At Mammoth Mountain (tel. 800/MAMMOTH; located in the Sierra Mountains of California, this year you can. So when the fireworks start blasting and those Roman Candles start bursting in thin air, you can watch them after enjoying a full day of skiing.

Boasting an "incredible" season of snowfall, Mammoth Mountain has 10 to 12 feet of base snow and is open for operation from 7:30am to 3pm every day until the Fourth of July. Ski operations are out of the mountain's Main Lodge. Daily tickets are $56 for adults, $42 for kids from 13 to 18 and $28 for 7 to 12 year olds. Children six years old or younger and seniors over 80 ski for free. A scenic gondola is also available for trips up the mountainside offering vistas of the entire valley below. During June, the gondola will operate Fridays to Sundays with schedules subject to change.

A "Spring Fest Lodging Package" ( is available till May 31, 2006 that costs $82 per night at a number of mountain lodges and hotels and lift tickets. A two night minimum stay is required and rooms are available for this late May special. To play a little golf during your summer ski session, Mammoth is also offering a stay and play package starting at $110 per night and round of golf at the Sierra Star Golf Course. You'll stay at the Juniper Springs Resort if you book this package which is good from June 24 to October 7, 2006. Another minimum stay of two nights is required. A stay and bike special is also available for $70.

Located about a five hour drive from Los Angeles and a three hour drive from Reno, Mammoth is a scenic drive and accessible by train from some California cities. The mountain's website even lists places to stop on the way such as the Tioga Pass if coming from Northern California or Death Valley if coming via the Southern route. Concerts and events ( are also part of this season's fanfare with a jazz jubilee in July and a beer and blues festival in August.

Accommodations at the Juniper Lodge Resort ( are studio to three bedroom condo facilities with a full range of amenities such as outdoor spas, 24-hour service, housekeeping and free high-speed Internet. The lodge also has a coffee shop-type restaurant for snacks and quick pick-ups like coffee and hot chocolate. For a tour of the mountain area, Mammoth has a special two and a half hour guided ski tour that leaves from the Main Lodge. With a top elevation of more than 11,000 feet and over 300 days of ski time, Mammoth is a full-time ski extravaganza. Private lessons are available through July 4, 2006 for $75.

In addition to the Spring Fest package, an "Endless Winter" deal also costs $82 per night for hotel and lift tickets. A two night minimum is again required, but this package lasts through July 2, 2006. Based on double occupancy stays, none of the packages include tax or service charges.

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