Mammoth Lakes is in eastern California, approximately midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The temblor hit at 6:22 a.m. and was centered about 12 miles southeast of Mammoth Lakes, said Pat Jorgenson, spokeswoman for the U.S. Geological Survey.
"It's the largest in that area since July of 1996," Jorgenson said.
The earthquake was followed by a series of tremors, including a 3.9-magnitude quake at 6:28 a.m. and a 4.3-magnitude temblor at 6:38 a.m., according to the website.
The Mono County Sheriffs Department says they've received no reports of injury or damage.
Sharon Devusser, a telephone operator at Mammoth Mountain Inn said she has been getting calls from guests and the question they've been asking is, "How big was it?"
No guest reported damage and no one was hurt, she said.
The earthquake was felt as far away as Bakersfield and on the west side of the Sierra, Jorgenson said.