Camp Nelson Trail is a 5.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Springville, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from February until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 5.2 miles Elevation Gain: 958 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

As of December 2019, the road is closed before the trailhead. Be prepared to add some length to your hike.

hiking
5 days ago

Great trail ! make sure after you park on the side of the road, you walk across a narrow wooden makeshift bridge that has a sign that says wishbone redwood . Its between two private roads I accidentally walked into both those roads looking for the trail haha. I took my two weenie dogs and they were able to walk along it to go through the trail!

hiking
7 days ago

Filmed a quick guide youtube.com/watch?v=lQJKrZtHW18 Points of interest are the numerous Sequoia Giants and the "Wishbone Tree."

hiking
bugs
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Late post- hiked this Nov 2019. Parking can be tricky as there are only 4 or so actual parking spots at the head. It was a very fun very shaded hike with beautiful trees, our dog also loved it but be warned your dog will have to cross bridges and running water.

hiking
2 months ago

The Camp Nelson trail was my favorite trail during my trip to the Sequoia National Forest. At the time of my trip in mid March, the M-90 highway was closed south of Ponderosa, including the portion connecting to the Trail of 100 Giants. The snowline was too thick for my lack of gear and low ground clearance car at >6500ft, making the Needles Lookout and Freemen Creek also inaccessible. Camp Nelson was initially a 4th choice of the available north of Ponderosa trails, but it did not disappoint. . There were many giant sequoias on the trail, which were really amazing and made the hike especially memorable. There were also lots of deer and some beautiful scenic forest views, but few views of long distances. The trail runs next to a creek, with several creek crossings that make the trail unique and interesting. Some of the crossings can feel like an obstacle course, including one across a bridge made by attaching short horizontal blanks to a log (see pictures). The AllTrails map route ends an an arbitrary point for no apparent reason. If you continue a few hundred feet beyond the map route end, there is a nice waterfall view. I ended by the waterfall because the snow was becoming thicker at the higher elevation. If you keep going further, you can reach the M-190 highway. The mountain bikers seemed to favor an alternative loop route. I didn't see any other hikers. As others have mentioned the road is blocked off before the start of the trail, so you need to initially walk for a little under 1 mile to reach the trail. There are at least 2 alternative trail entrances that do not have this extra ~1 mile, which appear if you select USGS map layer. My 5 star rating is for the trail itself, not hike on the road leading up the trail ,which is a far less interesting route through some rental cabins.

hiking
3 months ago

I hiked the trail but the road that leads to Nelson Campground is closed still for winter so it adds a mile each way to walk the road to the trailhead. I parked just at the closed campground gate on Nelson Road. There are plenty of giant sequoias on this hike, incredible views (Trail of 100 Giants was not accessible so I went here, as the road is closed for winter for that, too). Not sure I was supposed to hike the trail but I did it anyway. Trail winds through a beautiful forest, many lovely streams that were low water and all had bridges to assist. Still patches of snow on the ground at some points. Great way to experience giant sequoias and get in a moderate hike at the same time. Even get to walk through a giant sequoia at one point.

hiking
icy
snow
5 months ago

The road is closed 0.8mi before the trailhead.

hiking
rocky
snow
5 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

this was o e of the best trails ive been on not that hard its beautiful waterfall. bridges ECT plenty of aight seeing and wildlife to run into hope you take my word for it ..

hiking
7 months ago

there is about 3 Creek crossing one is pretty flimsy lots of wild life seen tons of deer and a large black bear watch out for mtbs

hiking
8 months ago

Amazing hike! The scenery is breathtaking and entirely worth the constant uphill you have when you reach the end and head back.

8 months ago

Enjoyable walk. Well trafficked by families with children and dogs. Never far from water. Well shaded. No real views.

hiking
bugs
9 months ago

Had a great half day up in Nelson! Trail is mild to moderate, Mcintyre's creek is "a flowin'" beautiful canopy and surroundings. There is a great spot just off trail to pic*nic @ the waters edge. Half day didnt allow for full trail, however, we will def be back to officially *complete. Mosquitoes near water*

hiking
9 months ago

we got a late start and we didnt get to hike the whole trail but the 3.5miles we did see was beautiful. minimal amount of people on the trail very shady and a variety of terrain. me and the family will go again!!!! a must see

hiking
9 months ago

Beautiful hike! August weather was sunny with highs in low/mid 70s. Trail is mostly shaded. I would rate this hike as moderate and the last mile being hard (steep climb up). We took our 10 year old daughter and had to stop frequently. NOTE: Started at the end near Quaking Aspen, which I WOULD NOT recommend. If you plan to do this, pass the campground and North Road, keeping an eye out for sign that reads NELSON TRAIL on your left-hand side. I would not recommend starting in Quaking Aspen because you cannot park in that campground area and will add 1 mile to get to the trail head from parking across the street from the campground. The trail in the campground also splits and we headed the wrong direction for 1 mile, so plan accordingly.

hiking
9 months ago

If you want a beautiful hike through groves of giant sequoias this is the hike for you! You will only be able to see these groves by hiking or biking in. We started at Camp Nelson and hiked through to Hwy 190. It’s not very strenuous until the last mile and a half. Then it’s up the mountain and plenty of switchbacks. I will qualify this review with my age, I’m 58 and have done some strenuous hikes but the cardio component can be difficult for me. We finished this approx. 5 mile hike in about 3.5 hours. We stopped at the meadow and hwy 190 but you can continue on to Quaking Aspen campground which is another mile on trail. If you walk another mile up hwy 190 the Ponderosa Lodge is waiting with food and cold beverages. This was definitely worth the effort and time!

ohv/off road driving
10 months ago

This is the 21S06 forest road to Needles panorama.

recorded Recording - Jul 03, 02:42 PM

hiking
10 months ago

started the camp nelson Trail from the opposite end. Beautiful Trail with lots of giants to coils down near the creek. Fantastic hike!

hiking
11 months ago

Big trees. Loved the hike. Definitely makes you feel small. It's warm but you feel the breeze of the running water near by. it was amazing.

running
11 months ago

Such a beautiful trail up to Slate Mountain

hiking
11 months ago

Great trail. Not a long hike but it will get your heart rate moving a bit. It has beautiful scenery, great sequoia’s and my favorite part is the minimal traffic on the trail. If you’re headed here anytime near the time of this post, the river is high and great rapids present. Head over!

hiking
11 months ago

I’ve been hiking and mountain biking this trail for thirty years. Also I’ve lived in Camp Nelson for a time. If hiking, plan for about 4-5 hours if you want to go up then back down again. If you are limited for time park one car at the bottom on Camp Nelson drive and drive to the top near Quaking aspen Camp ground. Then you can drive back up pick your second car. Carry on to Pondeosa lodge for lunch. Best time to go is July when the ferns are out and the two river crossings aren’t a big deal. I’ve been on many trails in California and beyond. Few compare to it because of the beauty of the Redwoods and the solitude. There are also other trails in the area not included on this site.

hiking
muddy
snow
Tue May 28 2019

Beautiful snowy hike. Took our time enjoying the snowy path, falling drops of water from the giant sequoias and pines, the sound of water rushing through the river and all of the creeks along the way. We made our way about a mile past the wishbone sequoia until we were hiking in a foot of snow and turned back - about 3.5 hours. Lovely!

hiking
Sun Apr 28 2019

My friends dog ran off near the second log crossing the river(log with wooden planks) if you see a small maltees yorki poodle mix with a purple harness she goes by Kona. Please text 323-900-9792 or email apelayo10@gmail.com

hiking
Sun Apr 28 2019

My friends dog ran off right past the second log (with wooden planks). If anyone spots a small maltees yorki poodle with a purple harnest she goes by Kona. Please call 3239009792 or email apelayo10@gmail.com Thank you

hiking
scramble
snow
Tue Apr 23 2019

Beautiful, mostly shaded walk through the mixed forest of sequoias and cedar. Snow wasn’t that much of issue but plenty of downed trees. Either way navigating around these obstacles was easy to get back on track. Brought the dogs for the hike it was perfect for them.

Showing results 1 - 26 of 140