Frequently Asked Questions


RECSTRATS is an acronym for Recreation Strategy and the name given to a process that is underway to help shape the future of recreation in Mammoth Lakes.

What does RECSTRATS mean?

“A vision for recreation in Mammoth Lakes and a Strategic Plan for its implementation.” RECSTRATS identifies a recreation vision for Mammoth Lakes, 3 guiding principles for prioritization of projects, programs or services, and 7 core Strategies for implementation. RECSTRATS will ultimately shape the future of recreation in Mammoth Lakes. Yes, it is a BIG deal!

What is the Recreation Vision for Mammoth Lakes as identified in RECSTRATS?

“To be the Best Alpine Recreation Community in the Country.”

What are the 3 Guiding Principles?

The 3 RECTSRATS Guiding Principles are to be used as overarching guidelines when new ideas and priorities are being considered for implementation. The guiding principles include:

  1. Stewardship/Management: The use of recreation as a stewardship/management tool provides Mammoth Lakes with a significant resource. From a resource perspective, we need to manage recreation capacity including existing and new recreation opportunities both now and in the future.
  2. Economic Development: The use of recreation as an economic development tool is important to improve and grow the local economy. This includes the ability to build upon existing core recreation activities and create an overall defendable market position for the Town of Mammoth Lakes as a recreation destination.
  3. Quality of Life: The use of recreation for community enhancement and quality of life improvements makes the Town of Mammoth Lakes a desirable place to live and work. An enhanced environment also serves as a key driver for business.

What do the 7 Core Strategies mean?

In an effort to implement the recreation strategic plan and achieve the vision RECSTRATS identified, 7 core strategies (once implemented) will make Mammoth Lakes and the surrounding Inyo National Forest one of the most desirable regions for recreation in the country. The core strategies are not stand-alone silos, but rather they integrate and link with one another. For example, if you are a world-class athlete, your interest and passion can be found in the High Altitude Training, Trails and Non-Winter Recreation Activities. If youth activities or baseball and soccer programming is a priority, your interests can be found in the Municipal Sports and Recreation strategy.

What are the 7 Core Strategies? (in no particular order)

  1. Highest Quality Winter Recreation Activities: To provide the highest quality and variety of winter recreation activities for both local residents and visitors alike.
  2. Highest Quality Non-Winter Recreation Activities: To provide the highest quality and variety of non-winter recreation activities for both local residents and visitors alike.
  3. Municipal Sports and Recreation: To provide local residents with high quality recreation facilities and diverse programming which can lead to an improved quality of life for all.
  4. Trails: To develop, maintain and program the highest quality integrated trails system.
  5. Special Events: To provide infrastructure, logistic and facilitation support for regional recreation-based special events.
  6. High Altitude Training: To develop the Mammoth Lakes region as one of the premier high altitude summer and winter sports training centers.
  7. Arts & Culture: To provide infrastructure, logistic and facilitation support for regional arts & culture.

Why do we need RECSTRATS?

Mammoth Lakes is an alpine recreation destination in the Eastern Sierra, completely surrounded by the Inyo National Forest. Residents and visitors alike have been recreating in and around Mammoth for decades, accessing the public lands for diverse recreation activities. With the Town’s incorporation, there was the development of municipal recreation facilities including parks and trails. While there was general acknowledgement of the value recreation brought to the community - from both a quality of life and economic sustainability perspective - there has not been a focused effort to enhance and expand the recreation experience in Mammoth Lakes. It is intended that this effort will assist the Town in delivering the very highest quality of life for our residents and the highest quality of experience for our visitors as stated in the 2007 Town of Mammoth Lakes General Plan.

Who will benefit from RECSTRATS?

Everyone that recreates in and around Mammoth Lakes! It is anticipated that this process will benefit interagency collaboration between the United States Forest Service and The Town of Mammoth Lakes, including the engagement and interaction of a wide variety of user groups, the private sector, non-governmental organizations and the general public. It will also direct the development of recreation infrastructure in the region, and may be used to inform the strategic implementation of both Measure ‘R’ and ‘U.’

What can we expect from the Implementation of RECSTRATS?

RECSTRATS identified a ‘Sense of Place’ and ‘Tangible Elements’ as two key items that when implemented (1 to 10+ year timeframe) will deliver the following:

Sense of Place

  • Inspiring/adventurous spirit
  • Sense of ownership/a special place
  • Sense of renewal

Tangible Elements

  • World class high altitude training center
  • Year-round Recreation
  • Multi-use facilities
  • Trail system with signage
  • Integrated mobility
  • Resources for maintenance
  • Trail access/parking

How did RECSTRATS start?

In July 2010 the Town Council accepted an offer by MLTPA to finance a facilitated process for completing the Mammoth Region Recreation Council (MRRC) / Mammoth Lakes Recreation (MLR) reorganization process. The Council’s Recreation Reorganization Subcommittee appointed community members and staff to a Recreation Strategy (RECSTRATS) Steering Committee with the direction to deliver a recreation vision and strategy for Mammoth Lakes while also identifying opportunities that might be realized by formalizing the Town’s relationship with the Inyo National Forest.

What community members participated in the formation of RECSTRATS?

The Town of Mammoth Lakes RECSTRATS Leadership Team consisted of Mayor ProTem, Jo Bacon and Councilmember, Rick Wood. The appointed members of the Town of Mammoth Lakes RECSTRATS Steering Committee were: Tony Colasardo – Town of Mammoth Lakes Recreation Commissioner, Ray Jarvis – Town of Mammoth Lakes Public Works Director, Ralph Lockhart – Snowcreek Athletic Club, John Morris – Mammoth Lakes Tourism Board Member, Greg Norby – Mammoth Community Water District, and Jim Smith – Mammoth Mountain Ski Area. Facilitation was provided by Carl Ribaudo, from the Strategic Marketing Group, and Danna Stroud, past Town of Mammoth Lakes Tourism and Recreation Director. Funding and Support Services was provided by Mammoth Lakes Trails and Public Access Foundation (MLTPA).

Has RECSTRATS been adopted by Town Council?

Yes, the Mammoth Lakes Town Council adopted RECSTRATS on November 3, 2010 and empowered the Recreation Commission to develop a Recreation Strategy Implementation Plan.

What were the Implementation Recommendations from RECSTRATS?

RecStrats identified several recommendations:

  • Organizational Implementation – Inyo National Forest & Town of Mammoth Lakes relationship, Core Strategies, Capital Prioritization Policy, Work Plan Integration, and Interagency Communication
  • Technology – Technology solutions
  • Funding – local, state and federal
  • Other - “Mammoth Recreation” Brand, a Recreation Summit, and an Annual Recreation Newsletter

What is the Recreation Strategy Implementation Plan Phase?

To deliver the vision of becoming the best alpine recreation community in the country, an implementation plan that includes the identified recommendations needs to be developed. The Implementation Plan includes the following deliverables:

  • Implementation plan linkages
  • Implementation plan strategies
  • Categorized and prioritized list of projects, programs and/or services
  • Mobility opportunities or potential issues
  • Funding opportunities
  • Timeline for implementation
  • Identify organization/partners

Who is developing the Recreation Strategy (RECSTRATS) Implementation Plan?

The Strategic Marketing Group (SMG) was contracted by the Town of Mammoth Lakes to conduct a dynamic, well designed, and expertly facilitated and communicated public process to deliver a publicly endorsed, categorized, and prioritized list of recreation projects, programs and services by September of this year. It is ultimately you, the recreation enthusiast that will develop the RECSTRATS Implementation Plan!

When does the Recreation Strategy (RECSTRATS) Implementation Plan begin?

The first public workshop is scheduled on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. at the Mammoth Lakes Community Center located at 1000 Forest Trail, Mammoth Lakes.

How do I or my organization shape the future of recreation in Mammoth Lakes?

Eight collegial, fun, and engaging topic-specifc public workshops beginning on March 2, 2011 and concluding on June 23, 2011 have been scheduled by the Recreation Commission. Workshops are scheduled on Wednesday and Thursday evenings from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. The first workshop is an introduction to the RECSTARTS process titled “Issues Framing” followed by the topic-specific elements. To provide greater participation, the 7 core strategies have been consolidated to 6 (see below). Please visit the Recreation Calendar to review all meeting dates, locations and times.

What is the Workshop Meeting Schedule?

March 2, 2011: Issues Framing - all participants
March 3, 2011: Municipal Sports & Recreation (Includes MUSD)
April 13, 2011: Winter Recreation & Trails
April 14, 2011: Non-Winter Recreation & Trails
May 11, 2011: Special Events
May 12, 2011: Arts & Culture
June 8, 2011: High Altitude Training & Trails
June 23, 2011: Linkages and Priorities

Where are the Workshops held?

All workshops will be held at the Mammoth Lakes Community Center, 1000 Forest Trail, Mammoth Lakes, CA. Call (760) 934-8989 ext. 222 for directions or additional information.

What time do the Workshops Begin and End?

Workshops begin promptly at 4:00 p.m. and end at 7:00 p.m. Light refreshments will be provided. Restroom facilities are located at the venue, along with limited parking.

What if I cannot attend a Meeting Workshop?

Broad public input will be gathered not only at the workshops, but through online surveys, “Comment Stations” located throughout Mammoth Lakes, Webinars, Conference calls, and through various stakeholder meetings (Mammoth Trails/Sports Council, clubs, lunch groups, etc).

Where are the Comment Stations Located?

You can participate in shaping the future of recreation in Mammoth Lakes by providing your thoughts and suggestions at “Comment Stations” located throughout town. Locations include the Town Offices, Snowcreek Athletic Club, and the Mammoth Lakes Library. Other locations may be added in the future.

When will the RECSTRATS Implementation Plan be completed?

The RECSTRATS Implementation Plan will be presented to the Recreation Commission in August, 2011 and to Town Council in late August, 2011 to early September, 2011.

Where do I go to find out more information about the project?

Please visit RecStrats. All pertinent information relating to RECSTRATS can be found on this website, including the meeting schedule, meeting notes and how the public can participate.

Who is responsible for delivering the RECSTRATS Implementation Plan?

RECSTRATS is a Recreation Commission driven and owned process with support from Town Staff.

Who is the Recreation Commission contact for RECSTRATS?

Bill Sauser is the Recreation Commission Chair and he can be reached at (760) 937-5822.

Who is the Town of Mammoth Lakes contact for this project?

Stuart Brown is the Recreation Manager for the Town of Mammoth Lakes and he can be reached at (760) 934-8989 ext. 210.

Who is the Strategic Marketing Group (SMG)?

Since 1992, the Strategic Marketing Group (SMG) has assisted clients in the development of strategic marketing plans, tourism marketing programs, and other targeted marketing efforts in order to create a sustainable competitive advantage. SMG works with a variety of clients within the travel, recreation, and hospitality industries ranging from visitor bureaus to hotels. They are based in South Lake Tahoe. Visit SMG Consulting for more information.

Who are the SMG consultants developing the RECSTRATS Implementation Plan?

Understanding the challenge and opportunity facing the Town of Mammoth Lakes, Strategic Marketing Group (SMG) has assembled a team of experts that are well positioned to assist in successfully implementing the Town of Mammoth Lakes RECSTRATS Implementation Plan. Principal, Carl Ribaudo, worked closely with the Mammoth Lake’s community to produce the RECSTRATS report and, as a result, has a solid understanding of the community, the surrounding landscape, and the challenges faced during the RECSTRATS report process. Carl will serve as the overall project manager and will work closely with his partners to ensure smooth delivery of all services. To assist in the effort, Carl has teamed with Austin McInerny and Danna Stroud who both have long-histories of working in and around Mammoth Lakes. Austin has worked on a number of projects in Mammoth Lakes and the Eastern Sierra over the past decade and is well suited to be the facilitator for the public meetings that will be conducted as part of this effort. Danna Stroud has a long history in the community, including serving as the Town of Mammoth Lakes Tourism and Recreation Director for five years.