In Mammoth, we run. And run. Then we run some more.
Whether itâ€™s the New York City Marathon, the Boston Marathon, the Las Vegas Marathon or wherever distance runners gather, the Mammoth Track Club came up big in 2010.
One of the questions among us this past year is whether we are a ski town or a runnersâ€™ town.
Weâ€™re both, of course, and the runners are catching up fast.
Ryan Hall, who left the track club late in the season, nevertheless represented us well, finishing fourth in the Boston Marathon in April, just ahead of fifth-place finisher Meb Keflezighi.
The Town of Mammoth Lakes will appeal to the state Supreme Court for another chance to tell its airport lawsuit story, after losing its appeal of the Hot Creek Aviation lawsuit last week, according to Town Councilmember Rick Wood.
"We believe the decision (the appeals court made) will have state-wide impacts as to how municipalities conduct development agreements," he said, noting that all the state's cities and counties supported the Town of Mammoth Lake's position in court, as "friends of the court."
The most powerful document to come out of Mammoth in 2010 came with a curious name.
It is RecStrats, a shortening of â€śRecreation Vision & Strategies In Mammoth Lakes.â€ť
Created by Carl Ribaudo of the Strategic Marketing Group of South Lake Tahoe and facilitated by former Tourism and Recreation Manager Danna Stroud, the document ultimately may turn out to be as important as the Townâ€™s General Plan.
Not a policy document, it was created to provide all town and area leaders with a way to think in common terms about where the Town is headed in terms of what we do best â€“ having fun.
Hot Creek Aviation lawsuit still in appeal
There’s nothing quite like whistling past the graveyard.
Except now, with the $30 million Hot Creek Aviation litigation having gone against the Town, Mammoth Lakes is way past the graveyard.
Now it is wandering about in the never-never land of appeal.
Having made its argument in Sacramento in October, town officials came back to the High Country in low spirits.
It was a year of extremes.
Right off the bat, Mammoth hit 110 percent of normal snowfall.
Then, spring simply never showed up until it stopped snowing the last week of May. A cool and green May gave way to a gorgeous June and even July, as the massive snow and rain from the previous six months prolonged the arid Eastside’s green and flowing period far into August.
Summer was one of the most beautiful in collective memory.
First and foremost and before we get into the nitty-gritty, here’s a collective shout-out and way-to-go for the snow crews, cops, dispatchers, fire crews and PIO Stuart Brown. There are more, too. A fine job on an impossible storm. Yay to all of you! Mammoth Marketing chief Howard Pickett said he was sitting next to a guy who was connecting through SFO from San Diego and spent much of the 35-minute flight pleading for air service to Diego. ...
Better than expected.
Much better than expected.
Really, really great, in fact.
These conclusions by Mammoth Mountain about the success of air service this past year indicate that Mammoth is getting on the map in ways that will benefit not just the economy, but much more.
First, itâ€™s turning out to be a very good investment for both the Mountain and the region, no small matter, given the recession.
â€śWhat we are getting is a $23 million dollar return for a $2.2 to $2.5 million cost,â€ť said Howard Pickett, the Mountainâ€™s Chief Marketing Officer.
While those in Mammoth obsessed about snow last weekend, Mammoth’s Ski Cross star, Johnny Teller, was in Innichen, Italy competing in Sunday’s World Cup race.
Not only competing: Teller made it to the podium for a third place bronze medal, behind winner Scott Kneller of Australia (a former Mammoth Mountain Ski Team racer) and Switzerland’s Alex Fiva.
The Sierra Center Mall and Mono County Superior Court will open again Thursday for business, after emergency officials found and fixed two propane leaks and opened vents blocked by heavy wet, snow.
The mall was closed all day Wednesday, due to the problem.
Citing heavy snow, the Mammoth Lakes Fire Department locked down the Sierra Center Mall on Wednesday morning, effectively closing the Mono County Courts as well as several businesses.
The cause was a "heavy smell of propane," caused by the blockage of vents on the rooftop, said a city official.
Mammoth Mountain received a total of between nine and a half and fifteen feet of snow from the four day storm that ended early this Winter Solstice morning.
Another storm is forecast for later this evening and into Wednesday, with Thursday predicted to be the clearest day in a week.
Mammoth Mountain added another 12.5 feet between Friday and Monday, making the four-day storm something to remember.
And it's not over yet.
More snow is on the way for the Central Sierra, with another 18" to 24" expected above 7,000 feet by Wednesday evening. Another storm is expected after Thursday and into the Christmas weekend, as well, although forecasters are waiting to refine their forecast for that one.
The end result has been, and will be, a whole lot of snow.
While radical new designs are taking hold in snowboarding and recreational ski design, one thing hasnâ€™t changed much.
â€śRace skis have not changed that much at all,â€ť said Robin Falkingham, the longtime ski racer supplier at Command Performance in Mammoth.
â€śThe race ski hasnâ€™t changed dramatically because the race courses havenâ€™t changed dramatically.â€ť
He said the only difference in the past couple of decades has been that the skis have become shorter, but thatâ€™s not out of design considerations, but because of the materials with which skis are now built.
Violist Hillary Herndon joins the Felici Trio in concert this weekend for â€śMusic of the Heart.â€ť
The program features passion-filled works by Rebecca Clarke, ErnĂ¶ DohnĂˇnyi and the great Romantic composer, Johannes Brahms.
ErnĂ¶ DohnĂˇnyi - Serenade for String Trio in C Major, opus 10. DohnĂˇnyi ranks next to Franz Liszt as the most versatile Hungarian musician and is generally considered credited with shaping Hungaryâ€™s musical culture in the 20th century.
Eager snowmobilers and wary wilderness watchers are going to have to wait a bit longer for a final decision on a long-awaited snowmobile crossing of the Sonora Pass area Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) â€“ but just a little longer.
â€śIâ€™m can confidently say that we will approve the option with the two crossings, (by the end of the year)â€ť said Humboldt Toiyabe National Forestâ€™s Bridgeport District Ranger Mike Crawley Tuesday.
â€śI know that will be unpopular with some but we are trying to meet Congressâ€™ requirements for public safety (and the two crossings are deemed to be the safest),â€ť he said.