China Peak VCW_SI_Ski_T9_ChinaPeak_1280x642

China Peak

China Peak
Easy access makes this a snow-season favorite

This low-key resort on the western side of the Sierra is a local favourite for Central Valley skiers and boarders. Some 70 miles/109 kilometres northeast of Fresno in the uncrowded Sierra National Forest, China Peak offers nearly 1,700 feet/518 metres of vertical, and sweeping views from its highest point at 8,700 feet/2,652 metres.

The goal is to be a place that’s easy to get to, and that has something for everyone. Kids can build their skills on a Burton Progression Park in Ullmann’s Alley. More advanced boarders and skiers ride the rails, boxes, hips, and spines of popular—and challenging—Tollhouse Park. Canyonlands gives skiers and boarders a place to play on bank turns, rollers, and jumps.

For an old-time end to your day, put up your boots and relax at JW’s Original Bar, in the unpretentious base lodge.

China Peak VCW_D_HS_Hero_packtrip_Sunset-TS_1280x642_sized
Thomas H. Story/ Sunset Publishing

Northern California

Discover the High Sierra

China Peak vca_maps_highsierra
0
March
Average (°C)
Mar - May
12°
High
-5°
Low
June - Aug
22°
High
5°
Low
Sept - Nov
18°
High
-4°
Low
Mar - May
12°
High
-5°
Low

Snow-covered peaks in winter, gushing waterfalls in spring, wildflower meadows and glistening lakes in summer, vibrant colours in fall—this is a land of dramatic and wild beauty. World-class mountain resorts circling turquoise-blue Lake Tahoe, and at Mammoth Lakes cater to all, with scenic ski trails in winter and trails and vistas in summer.

Yosemite Valley…is always a sunrise, a glitter of green and gold and wonder in a vast edifice of stone and space.”  --photographer Ansel Adams

Yosemite National Park, a World Heritage Site, is here, roughly 3½ hours east of San Francisco. Whether you hike a mountain, ski the steeps, or lounge in a hot tub beneath a canopy of stars, you’ll find your perfect getaway. 

China Peak IMG_3821[1]
At 14,505 ft. above sea level, Mt. Whitney is the highest point in the contiguous United States.
Enter Yosemite Valley to travel back in time to Christmas Past

Enter Yosemite Valley to travel back in time to Christmas Past. Heraldic horns sound throughout Yosemite National Park's elegant ...

China Peak Bracebridge_Dinner_Cast_low_preview_686x885
Lani Spicer
China Peak vca_maps_highsierra
SPECIAL FEATURE
Family-friendly resorts, snowy escapes

High Sierra peaks, deep drifts on a Mammoth volcano, family-friendly resorts, snowy escapes on the edge of Yosemite and more—California has enough alpine destinations to keep any skier or boarder...

China Peak MammothMountain_1251_preview_686x885
SPECIAL FEATURE
Relax after a day on the slopes

Kicking back after you kick off your boots is a snow-country tradition, and there’s plenty of post-slopes fun at California’s top alpine resorts. Have a beer or warm up with an Irish coffee, dance...

China Peak KTBaseBar_JeffEnegerbretson_SquawValley_preview_686x885
Jeff Enegerbretson
SPECIAL FEATURE
Find whitewater rafting fun for all—from newbies to nerves-of-steel experts

Think of a river, and chances are you’ve got your own daydream. Maybe you want to float on inner tubes, or maybe your style is to careen through raucous rapids in an eight-person inflatable raft....

China Peak VC_RiverRafting_Preview_Stock_RM_172652806_686x885
Groveb/Getty Images
China Peak VCW_D_Yosemite_Hero_20140503_Yosemite_hero_1280x642

Trip 6-7 days 10 stops

Sierra Adventure

Granite peaks, alpine valleys, towering trees-the High Sierra is nature's playground all year-round
China Peak VCW_D_HS_T3_Tahoe_Swim_Farnum_0

Blue as a topaz and circled by majestic peaks, this High Sierra gem straddling the California-Nevada border is a bucket-list staple, a place where the air is “very pure and fine...it is the same the angels breathe,” according to author Mark Twain. Lakefront towns dot the shoreline, each with...

China Peak VC_Spotlight_LakeTahoe_Stock_RF_4223000027_1280x640_0
Alex Farnum

Spotlight: Lake Tahoe

China Peak vca_maps_highsierra
Majestic Peaks, Bucket-List Essential

Blue as a topaz and circled by majestic peaks, this High Sierra gem straddling the California-Nevada border is a bucket list essential....

China Peak VCW_D_MammothLakes_Hero_Horseback_1280x642_0
Rebecca Garrett

Spotlight: Mammoth Lakes

China Peak vca_maps_highsierra
Snowy winters, wildflower summers

Surrounded by some of the highest peaks in the west, folks in this laid-back mountain town know they’ve got a good thing going. It’s a land...

China Peak VC_LonePine_ST_RF_722224619_1280x640
Room/Getty Images

Lone Pine

Discover the natural beauty and another side of California in a historic Owens Valley small town

Head to Lone Pine to see a different side of California—one that is less connected to...

As it lay there with the shadows of the mountains brilliantly photographed upon its still surface, I thought it must surely be the fairest picture the whole earth affords.
Mark Twain (recalling his first sighting of Lake Tahoe)
July - August

With a pine-and-peak alpine setting and a relaxed and friendly ambiance, this appealing event in Bear Valley, roughly halfway between Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, includes performances by outstanding musical artists. Launched in 1967, the festival features a full symphony orchestra, international soloists, and legendary entertainers at pretty outdoor venues. Classical works, opera, Broadway show tunes, and opening weekend acts of contemporary and country music are offered, with past guest artists ranging from the Mamas and the Papas, to Big Bad Voodoo Daddies.

China Peak BearValleyMusic_preview_686x885
China Peak vca_maps_highsierra
China Peak VCW_D_HS_T5_Mono Lake_VCL_HS_Mono_Kayakers_KG
Kodiak Greenwood

Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve

Visit bizarre formations, cinder cones, and a super-salty lake

There are few places in California—and maybe on the planet—that can make you think you might just be on Mars. This is one of them. At this high-...

China Peak VCW_D_HS_T6_Bodie cars_VCL_HS_Bodie_KG-sized
Kodiak Greenwood

Bodie

Tour the eerie remnants of a former boomtown

There's something eerily appropriate about bumping down the dusty desert road that winds the final few miles into Bodie State Historic Park. Round...

China Peak VC_LonePine_ST_RF_722224619_1280x640
Room/Getty Images

Lone Pine

Discover the natural beauty and another side of California in a historic Owens Valley small town

Head to Lone Pine to see a different side of California—one that is less connected to...

China Peak Bishop_HighSierra_1280x642_downsized

Bishop

Explore an outdoorsy adventure town with an artistic side

Bishop brims with outdoor activities. Situated at the north end of the Owens Valley, with close access to some...

China Peak CalaverasBTSP_sized
Lucas Himovitz

Calaveras Big Trees State Park

Look up at (and learn about) amazing giant sequoias

Established in 1931 to preserve a stunning stand of giant sequoias, this park offers one of the easiest places to see these towering trees. Head 4...