This year’s ski trip took us to Mammoth Mountain. I tried to plan everything out so that we had as few surprises as possible. I settled on Mammoth after doing some research and made all the reservations before Thanksgiving. I called and talked to the resort and hotel services about whether I needed a car or if I could rely on public transportation. I looked at maps to find the best places to stay. I factored in walking and restaurant availability. Once I found a lodge that would pick us up at the airport, was within walking distance of the Village Gondola and had access to all sorts of food, I committed. We stayed at the Alpenhof Lodge in a room which was larger than we expected or needed. The gas fireplace was a little cantankerous and there wasn’t a microwave but it was very comfortable and we were able to stretch out after skiing all day. It was only a short walk to Gomez’s, Sushi Rei, and Smokeyard Chop House. I also talked Thea into the concept of ‘roll-on, roll-off’ packing. We didn’t check any luggage this year. Everything that we needed we fit into a carry-on apiece. This also worked out fine. So all my bases were covered. Except the snow. Last year Mammoth had over two hundred inches of snow by January 1, that left them with over a base of over ninety-seven inches. The new year of 2014 had left them with only a twenty-five inch base. Effectively, they were only fifty percent open. It didn’t affect us in the least. The parts that were open were all blues and greens that we loved skiing on.