Reporting Live from June Lake, CA
Did I visit June Lake in June? No lol but I am sharing the deets of our trip in June, so that has to count for something...right? June Lake is a cutie little mountain town in the Eastern Sierra Mountains just East of Yosemite National Park. It is about a 6 and a half hour drive from San Diego, but the drive is filled with so many cool views and cool places to stop on the way. On our drive we stopped at some painted boulders and Gus' Beef Jerky (which in my opinion is the world's best).
We visited June Lake in early April at the very end of ski season, which was nice because we got to enjoy our weekend skiing without the crowds that the slopes can attract at the peak of the season.
So here are my recs for when you are reporting live from June Lake during ski season:
Where to Stay:
June Lake is a small town, so where ever you stay it isn't a long drive to get to your destination. Like any ski town, June Lake offers a variety of cabins and locally owned hotels. For our trip we stayed at a cute little A-frame just down the road from the main village and the June Mountain slopes. Our A-frame had one bedroom, a loft with 3 twin beds, a kitchen, bathroom, and a living area with the most beautiful view of the mountain. One of the best parts was being able to start a fire inside at night while we drank some beers and played card games. Another added bonus was that we could access our place with a code on a key pad instead of having to carry around a key.
Things to Do:
-Ski at June Mountain:
If you are a skier or a snowboarder, June Mountain is an awesome place to enjoy the sport. I've skied at smaller places in Indiana and Michigan, and Breckenridge in Colorado, but tbh June Lake might be my favorite. I liked it because there were a lot of options for all levels of skiers, and navigating the mountain wasn't overwhelming. If you have never skied before, this is a great place to learn. They have so many skilled teachers that can help you learn or improve upon the skills that you already have on the mountain.
-Wild Willy's Hot Spring:
If you are visiting in the June Lake area, visiting a hot spring is a MUST! There are so many in the area to visit and we read this blog to help us decide which one we wanted to visit. Wild Willy's was about a 35 minute drive from where we were staying and it was fairly easy to find. The location of the hot spring is actually listed on Apple Maps so we used that to route ourselves there. You have to drive down a long gravel road that will eventually lead you to a parking lot. The space is limited in the lot, but we thankfully found one empty spot. Once you park its about a quarter-mile walk to the hot spring. The path is gravel and lined with wood, and the views all around are GORGEOUS.
Once we got to the hot spring it was pretty packed so we were in one of the lower tubs and eventually moved up to a bigger tub. Fair warning....clothing is optional at this hot spring, and while we were there some people took that option....right beside us. Pack a cooler of drinks for your visit to Wild Willy's and towels to use after!!
-Check out Mammoth: Mammoth is the town just south of June Lake that has a ton of restaurants and is home to California's most visited ski resort, Mammoth Mountain. Because the time we visited was on the cusp of transitioning seasons (and COVID) many of the adventure activities to plan were not an option. If you are visiting in the heart of summer or ski season, check out Mammoth Lakes website to plan some fun excursions.
-Devil's Postpile: Devil's Postpile is a National Monument near Mammoth Mountain. While we were visiting it was closed, but if it is open you should add it to your itinerary. It is an unusual rock formation of columnar basalt. Linked here is the National Park Service website with all the deets to plan your visit to Devil's Postpile.
The views in June Lake are immaculate...I literally gasped the first time we drove down 158 to our cabin. The scenic drive is 16 miles long around June Lake, Silver Lake, and Grant Lake. Make a playlist with your friends and soak up all the views on this drive on the 158!
Where to Eat:
-June Lake Pizza: This pizza was the ideal post skiing dinner...it was gone in 5 minutes. We called and ordered a large pepperoni pizza and picked it up (with a couple beers) at their window by the sidewalk.
-Hermitage Juice Bar: A cutie little hut right off 158 that serves smoothies, acai bowls, coffee, and toast. We stopped here in the morning for breakfast before hitting the slopes.
A great place for coffee and a breakfast sandwich!
Thank you for joining me on this reporting live update!!! See ya next week! xoxo, Ris 🦋