North Fork Kern River Trail is a 1.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Springville, California that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
The trail climbs to a gentle to moderate grade over riverside bluffs, then descends to interspersed riverside terraces. Digger Pine, live oak, incense cedar, manzanita and pine dot the areas as well as high boulders creating cave-like campsites.
We did this one last Sunday because we happened to be in the area for a family reunion. It's easy enough that we took a 5 year old with sandals and an 11 year old (both girls so they're tougher than boys, at least that's what my wife says). Very pretty, especially for those from Southern California because so many of us down here have rarely if ever seen a wild river. Very warm when we went but many shady places for a little rest. Watch out for ticks in the Spring and Summer (we brought our border collie) and snakes. There are also a few places where the trail is narrow and the drop off steep but all in all a wonderful walk.
This is by far my favorite trail! We walked down the stairway from the bridge and hiked about a mile (if that) and we found this beautiful camping spot near big boulders and huge trees that provided lots and lots of shade. Our campsite was right next to the Kern River and so we were able to see the people that were white water rafting go by us. The water was pretty cold, but it felt nice to stick your feet in after awhile. We did some fishing, but we didn't have any luck. (The rapids were pretty strong) If you want to fish, you might have to hike more on the trail. I love this trail and I can't wait to go back! :) Be careful, there was a rattlesnake right next to our campsite, so there IS snakes! And it was a little busy, but had the campsite to ourselves.