Are you interested in seeing a bear while in Mammoth Lakes? Have you ever wondered where the best places are to see a bear in Mammoth? In this blog post we will discuss the prevalence of American Black Bears in and around the Mammoth Lakes area. While you are here you can check out all of our merchandise featuring the dominant bear that wonders our neighborhood, we call him Gus. Links to a few items featuring Gus are below.
Please review this article from Mammoth Lakes Tourism about Bear Safety It covers topics like food & trash storage, bear cannisters for backpacking, and what to do when you encounter a bear. This article offers some great info that everyone who travels in bear territory should know. Black Bears are generally not very aggressive, so if you see one don't panic, just proceed with caution and do not approach or corner a bear.
As for where to see bears in Mammoth Lakes, you should be aware that they are just about everywhere in town. There is a quote from the "bear whisperer" Steve Searles, who is sadly no longer employed by the Town of Mammoth Lakes - "if you are in Mammoth, you are always within 100 yards of a bear". Despite their size, they are super quite and not easy to spot.
The truth is that you are just as likely to see a bear walking through a neighborhood as you are to see one on a hike in the middle of nowhere. You don't see them as often on or near Main Street, but they spend a lot of time on side streets and in areas with less traffic. They tend to be more active late in the afternoon and at night. Sadly, they are often spotted trying to get in dumpsters in various condo complexes. They also seem to be very active up in the Lakes Basin close to Lake Mary, Lake George, or Horseshoe Lake. Bears are also often spotted near Snow creek Golf course and Sierra Star golf course. There isn't really a strategy to spot a bear in Mammoth, but if you spend a lot of time up here you are almost guaranteed to see bears regularly.