Storms Have Dropped Snow; Mitten Up and Go

Sunny, balmy, sweaty, roasty. That's LA for you, most of the year, but around now there is some cold stuff nearby, especially with the wintry December we've had. Here are a few get-out-of-town places that may have some white on the ground; we strongly recommend checking the weather/snowfall on the official web site, or with a visitors bureau or a local business, before making the drive (especially if you're going only to see snow).

Mammoth: Oh, there's icy/snowy/fluffy goodness on the ground right now, and lots of it. A skier's paradise, with several runs and places to frolic in the flakes. Mammoth is crazy-busy around this time of year, so if you're planning a lengthy stay, best sort it all out before you make the five-hour haul up north.

Julian: An Old-West town with a famous apple pies. Julian is closer to San Diego than Los Angeles, but still doable in a (very long) day; if you're coming from points north, an overnight stay is recommended. If there isn't snow, this historic spot still feels faraway from the bustle of our huge metropolis.

Idyllwild: A nook nestled far above Palm Springs, complete with cabins and bed and breakfasts and quaint diners. We like the idea of building a snow lady in Idyllwild in the morning and snoozing, with a fashion magazine draped across our face, by a glimmer-y pool in the Valley below later in the day.

Big Bear and Lake Arrowhead: Two Los Angeles-adjacent classics, and close; the drive can be done in a morning. Snow or no snow, a day up in the mountains is just the calm-down balm that every Angeleno craves from time to time, we think. And these two spots certainly deliver. Does Big Bear still have that classic arcade on the main drag? We've been vowing to return...

We're sure there are more secret pockets that local winter-philes have been hoarding as their own. What a grand city: beaches to mountain snow in a couple of hours.

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