The Town of Mammoth Lakes lies at an elevation of about 7900 feet (2400 m) above sea level. As you approach town by climbing westbound on Highway CA-203 from US-395, the Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center and Ranger Station appears on your right. This facility is operated jointly by Inyo National Forest, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks (which administers Devils Postile National Monument), the Eastern Sierra Interpretive Association, and the Town of Mammoth Lakes. It is open daily from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, and offers information about recreation, lodging, dining, and local services, plus a nature store offering books, maps, guides, and souvenirs. Be sure to pick up the free Visitor Guide, a comprehensive collection of area information in newspaper form.
Mammoth Lakes has three traffic signals on its Main Street, which is Highway CA-203. The first is reached just past the Welcome Center. At this signal, at Old Mammoth Road, the Old Mammoth area is reached by turning left. At the second signal, CA-203 turns right onto Minaret Road. Making this turn takes you past The Village, a cluster of retail businesses and condominium lodging on your left (parking is on your right). Continuing on and up along CA-203, you will reach the Main Lodge and Mammoth Mountain Inn of Mammoth Mountain Ski Area (MMSA). MMSA has elevations ranging from 7953 feet / 2424 m to 11,053 feet / 3369 m above sea level; the Main Lodge's elevation is about 8900 feet / 2710 m.