Kennedy Meadow to the Bridge via PCT

MODERATE 68 reviews
#1 of 4 trails in

Kennedy Meadow to the Bridge via PCT is a 4.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Inyokern, California that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 4.1 miles Elevation Gain: 465 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash


horseback riding

nature trips


bird watching





wild flowers


1 month ago

You drive off 395 on 9 mile Rd for 25 miles.. Go past the fire station and store to the campground to find the trail head. As Sierra hikes go I was a bit underwhelmed but it was a lovely walk in the woods with the babbling creek and picturesque Bridge. Minimal gnats at this time of year and some yellow color. Best of all, the Pines cones had pine nuts in them! I was a sappy mess by the end but I squirrel away a handful of pine nuts! Yummy

2 months ago

This was a really nice short hike! The trail was well maintained and easily navigated. Several folks with dogs and that was neat. I’d like to give a shout out to “Creedence” and “Mike”, two PCT through hikers! After my hike was over, my friends and I shared some awesome chili, cornbread, fruit and cookies with these to guys which was way cool!

Nice easy hike. Beautiful scenery, river, camping near the bridge on west side of river.

2 months ago

Easy trail, breath taking view and bridge

Took my friends on this trail to introduce them to backpacking - it was a great way to get them started! The trail to the bridge is only 2 miles with mild elevation gain. At the bridge, we found about 5-6 primitive campsites along the river. There are places to access the river where you can sit in the refreshing water. Mosquitoes all throughout the day and lots of June bugs at night. No bear sightings and one black snake sighting. This wilderness was a nice, quick destination for a 2 day trip!

4 months ago

This was a perfect hike to introduce our little kids to backpacking. Minimal elevation changes, lots of shade for rest, and plenty of water. There is a nice little camping spot on the east side of the bridge just north of the trail. The river was running heavy and mosquitoes were present but minimal.

5 months ago

So beautiful, the smell of the trees and sounds of the running river make this walk an absolute delight- relaxing and relatively flat. Highly recommend.

Awesome trail! Loved that it was by the river the whole time and wasn’t just straight up or down but more wavy. The trailhead is to the left when you’re coming out of the parking lot. Somehow we totally missed it even though it was super obvious

7 months ago

Really had a great time and would definitely hike again. The trail is actually very easy, especially if you have time to kill. It is up and down, but the elevation gain and loss is minor with many a flat stretch in between. You follow the river, usually above, under trees a lot of the way. It definitely could be warm in the afternoon, but for us there was a nice breeze and plenty of shade. The bridge makes a nice destination if you’re looking for a goal on an easy hike. At a steady pace, for someone with a less than average athleticism, it took me two hours.

7 months ago

Great trail! My husband and I went on Thursday. It was a little chilly, but still enjoyable. On the drive up you’ll see some snow on the sides of the road. Beautiful scenery, I can only imagine what it’ll look like in a month or so! The river was really full too! I loved that the trail was alongside the river.

7 months ago

Great short hike. Took a family of 6 kids between 8 and 2 about 3 hours! Plenty of sun in the afternoon so I’m thinking the morning hours would be best as summer gets closer. Water flow is heavy right now!!!

Mon Jul 23 2018

Very easy & beautiful short hike. can hear the river flowing almost the whole hike... a nice sound when you live in the desert. will definitely do this again; but will go further past the bridge next time.

Wed Jul 18 2018

PCT hiker nobo

Fri Jul 06 2018

Hiked one week ago with my husband, 6 & 8yr old. This was their first hike, they did great. Agreed it’s up hill to the bridge and down hill coming back to Kennedy Meadows Camp. Also, would suggest doing it early in the morning, it can get pretty toasty. Took us about 2.5 hours round trip.

Mon Jul 02 2018

Great hike to the roaring south fork Kern river. Up hill on the way there and then down hill on the way back.

Sun May 27 2018

Good hike, we carried on about 1 1/2 miles past the bridge and if we’d had more time (and less rain) we’d have probably gone to Hawiee Pass. Worth a wander if you are looking for a gentle amble

Mon May 07 2018

great family hike .took six kids and four adult non hikers ,round tripped in 3.5 hours

Fri May 04 2018

Great short hike for me (a novice). Lots of spots to spend the night. Next time up will see how the fishing is.

Sun Nov 05 2017

Beautiful hike! Highly recommend this time of year.

Sun Oct 08 2017

The trail is very well maintained, as it is a section of the PCT. The trailhead is clearly marked, with a sign-in sheet and trail information visible. Overall, very little elevation changes, flat, and no obstacles along the way. The bridge offered nice view of the river, and offered a chance to cool off before continuing further. Many people turn around at the bridge, but you can absolutely continue. Today, the smoke was very thick from local fires, and I almost didn't do the hike, but decided to turn around at the bridge. Great one to take the dog along!

Mon Jul 31 2017

We got lost, we had to stopped and ask for directions. But it was our mistake forgot to print the directions, unfortunately there was no cell phone service. The hike was beautiful, wildflowers still blooming in July, the river was flowing really nice and refreshing, views of the mountains were fabulous. The trail is well defined. A fantastic Day hike. My husband, relatives and I will do this hike again.

Sat Jun 10 2017

Good hike with wildflowers in bloom. Sandy trail bring your gators. Lots of PCT thru hikers this time of the year.

Tue May 30 2017

Easy hike, but the trail is practically sand from all the usage.

Sat Oct 24 2015

Top dog trail

Sun Jul 24 2011

This section of the PCT is awsome I recomend if your in good shape to do all of section F which is a section of the PCT that runs through alot of wilderness including the South Sierra and the Golden Trout. Its just awsome scenery.

2 months ago

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