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winter in California winter weather in calif
snow in california / ski the sierras

Get those gloves out! Cool weather is here for the season. A few seasonal storms brought in rain and snow to California. By mid November there will be a good amount of snow in the Sierras. Ski season is already open, well before the holidaze. Yeah!

This means longer ski season & you still get to your shopping done early this year. Yeah right!

Mammoth Mtn - is already open for ski season!

Our annual Total Escape Adventures Autumn Cabin Trip to June Lake Loop gave quite a suprise with the golden leaves still changing - yet the granite peaks were naked. Snow often comes overnight and you wake to contrasting peaks. The white stuff starts falling around the Eastern Sierra in early October to mid-November. Each year is a bit different on timing & snow fall.

See Autumn on June Lake Loop june lake loop autumn colors

camp nelson
Charming & picturesque Camp Nelson in the Southern Sierra Nevada

California Small Mountain Towns:

winter wonderlands with snow sports & snow activities

Angels Camp Cedarville June Lake Pinecrest
Arnold Chester Lakeshore Quincy
Avery Dunsmuir McCloud Soulsbyville
Bear Valley Huntington Lake Mount Shasta Westwood

Winter Outdoors California, Hiking Weekend, Historic Towns



Total Escape is California, off the beaten path

After a horrific year of global pandemic, economic uncertainty, hazardous air quality and record breaking regional wildfires, California is now bracing for hard winter ahead. Turn off the news, grab your warmest jacket and gloves, and head outside for a much needed break. Pack a picnic and a thermos full of hot beverage. Sit still and watch wildlife, breathe deep, fresh air. Hike around the lake or mountain bike in the local park. Snow is falling and the sledding is free. Bring chains for winter driving in the mountains. Social distancing is easy outdoors, as long as you know where to go. Total Escape will help you find more local destinations, away from the masses.



Rural California Directory: Now that you've found this independent California resource, you can discover more local destinations online. Find your own rural place, a homestead way up in the hills. Or discover that perfect spot for summer vacation, a hidden Sequoia grove, the best waterfall ever, the secret alpine fishing lake or maybe, just a bike rental shop in the forest. We list it here, all outdoors, all local. Travel the back roads of the west, on the cheap. Camp year round, without the fees, from Baja to Shasta. Find secluded spots. Historic, independent inns to remote yurt resorts, yoga weekends to primitive hot springs, RV resorts, or dispersed camp sites. Hiking trails, kayaking lakes, fishing streams, gold mines and ghost towns, and all the topographic maps to go with.

winter camping

all local: updated monthly

ancient: 24 years online!

We're still here, thousands of pages and decades later. Way outside the city limits, beyond the county line. No wifi, no smart meters, no gaming addictions, no traffic lights, no city noise. Rural living in California still exist. Hike on the weekends, bike to work, boating mid-week, we have you covered for destinations. Find a new creekside camp spot, a waterfall, trailhead or an ancient lava cave. Total Escape - Two whole decades online. Not quite obsolete.

Craving the Wild? Before the tweets, the constant memes and paralysis of our current culture, DanaMite started this travel web site way back in 1996. Catchy phrases like, FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) did not yet exist.

Total Escape features abundant real photos of real places. Secluded destinations, camping and lodging, examining the best back roads, side routes, the topo maps (to get you out there). Locals-only travel tips, gear reviews, festivals and events. This unique travel site is updated every month, for the past 24 years!

Juicy content specific only to California. Focusing on outdoor destinations, small towns and budget-minded travel since 1996, we've recreated the weekend getaway - without the crowds. Escape the matrix, the city life, the traffic jams and learn how to avoid the tourist traps. Drive on past the factory outlet malls and the water slides, we've got much more to show you. Way out there, on the back roads, and in the backcountry.

Wilderness in California - more nature, less people.

hike. bike. camp. sled.

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