Explore the most popular hiking trails near Porterville with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Hiked to Jordan hot springs and camped overnight! My friend and I were the only ones there. The hot spring was nice and hot and perfect for soaking in. Hiked back up to the trailhead the next day. Not gonna lie.... it was a pretty tough hike back up. Wish I coulda stayed there one extra day. Overall, it was a great hike with lots of neat spots to go off trail and explore.

The trail is beautiful but be advised that the Casa Vieja backpackers campground is on a meadow that is frequented by herds of cattle. They moo loudly all night long and defecate near the creek. If you can plan on camping at the hot spring it is a better choice. The hot spring and nearby campground is beautiful and well-maintained. From Casa Vieja to the hot spring the trail is steep but worth it.

Well marked trail, easy to follow. Several large trees have fallen across the trail and there are places where the brush needs to be cut back. The stream crossings: At Casa Vieja you can almost jump the water, the next one down the canyon is quite easy with some good flat rocks, the third crossing is a bit more challenging, the fourth crossing is a real challenge if you want to keep you feet dry.

Overall a real joy going in, and a real workout climbing out.

me and five of my Grandchildren did this hike going in was fun ,lot of work coming out ,but we're talking about doing it again. My age hope I can

off road driving
11 months ago

A very easy graded road drive that gives great access to numerous hikes and camping.
But it's not the drive but where it gets you. A really nice spot.

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Beautiful hike in winter conditions (Jan 1-2 2018)
50% snow and ice currently to 7300 ft. Trail is showing wear and needs a little love but is still easy to follow. Variety of water crossings from solid ice, logs and requiring boot removal and getting wet. Campsite near the springs is comfy with easy water access and a built up fire ring.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Just as an update the trail to drive in has been extended and the hike is now about 1.5 each way. Extremely easy to hike in aswell as exceptional fishing and climbing to be done in these areas. A must visit for those who are unabe yo go long distances or just want a simple relacing weekend.

Beautiful hike with great views during the first couple miles in, and then a pretty neat fiver crossing at Kern. No joke though, that uphill hike basically the entire hike back is very tough.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Good hike definitely harder on the way back. Great signage initially but sparse indicators once you reach trout meadow, big thanks to those who maintain it. This is a well maintained trail. We found heading left at unmarked forks got us to trout meadow. We did find a water source next to the rustic federal building in the meadow, although a barbed wire live stalk fence prevents access to creek that runs parallel to the meadow.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Completed this hike over fathers day weekend 2017 after tons of research trying to find a trail that had open roads, safe river crossings, and was without 5-10ft of snow. We hiked into Trout Meadows Friday night and made camp and day hiked down to the Kern River from there returning on Sunday. With the current snow melt situation there was plenty of water to filter along the way and the meadows were lush and alive. The little Kern and especially the big Kern were raging. We had hoped to find a little spot by the river that we could splash around in but the most we put in were our feet due to the current. Well maintained trail through diverse communities with moments of sweeping views of the canyons and snow capped peaks. All in all we roughly covered 30 miles. We saw deer, a bear, a bit of bear scat along the trail, lots of baby frogs and wildflowers in the meadows, heard bears, heard a huge group of coyotes, watched a helicopter make 3 flights over head (still not sure why), and warded off mosquitos. As others have said the reverse grade was quite a butt kicker and hiking out during the heat wave was tough as well as through the sandy trail. But overall it was magical and beautiful and we had an amazing time.

Absolutely loved this hike, except for the whole retrograde elevation aspect. Climbing uphill to finish the hike isn't ideal, but this hike had enough goodies to more than make up for it. The first 2 miles or so you have great views north into the High Sierras. This time of year (early June), most of the peaks were still snowcovered. Occasionally to the south you can catch a glimpse of the north side of the Needles. You'll come across water access about 3 miles in, which is consistent the rest of the way in to the Little Kern River. Once at the river, hang out at a river access point down by the bridge for a moment before heading on further into the trail, or turning back. The footbridge across the Little Kern is very sturdy and well engineered, and can be crossed anytime of year.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

This is a beautiful hike, very strenuous but worth it. there are 2 springs on the way down that you can fill up your camel backs - they come right out of the side of the hill! Be prepared to do some deep creek crossings if you go in May or early June - there's 4 of them. If you want to keep going the trail continues to Painter's Camp, another 6 miles but not as steep. This part of the trail will be hot now as all of the ponderosas and sequoias went up in flames during the McNally Fire. With that said, Painter's Camp and the 70 ft waterfall just before it are worth seeing.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Did this hike last year with a buddy of mine during November not the best conditions but made it work spectacular views enjoy time catching up with an old friend would do it again

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Fantastic trail. Did this back in 2014....twice. Only negative was the recent burn area from the Angola Mountain Fire. That area can be easily bypassed though. Water at Trout Meadow from a spring box, and also at Willow spring. Continue on for an easy drop down to the Kern. Camp at Grasshopper Flat. We were trying for Kern Lakes but didn't make it.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

I have been hiking these trails and camping overnight at Manter Meadow since the 1980s. Even after the big fire, nature has taken care of the place and it is as nice as it has ever been. Yeah, the trails need a little work, but it seems like they are keeping up with traffic. the trail beyond the meadow that goes to Little Manter Meadow and towards Rock House Basin is a bit of a mess. I would recommend filtering the water if you're going to be drinking from Manter Creek. However, I know a secret spring that I have been using for almost 40 years and it has always been flowing well.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

What is the parking spot about 5 miles away from the bridge on the Little Kern? Anyone know? I have been to it twice but have forgotten.


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Good trail easy hike in from Lewis trailhead nice climb out.

Well worn trail. Like walking in sand from all the horse traffic. We took a wrong trail and the 5 mile in turned into a 15 mile in!! My own fault. The way back from the little kern is all uphill!!!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

We hiked this trail in March and it was awesome. We started at the Jerky meadow parking lot for a one day hike. It was all uphill from the beginning to golden trout wilderness sign. From there we headed towards the bridge and little kern and it was all downhill. When reached the river it felt good to soak our feet in the river and to refuel on some snacks. This was my second time walking this trail and it won't be the last. I had more fun with an overnight stay than just a one day in and out hike. If you get a chance ad it to your bucket list.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Hiked as part of a big loop over Kern Peak from Lewis Camp (Sequoia side). The trail down is a little scary because the trees are really coming down after the fire so long ago. I met the group ahead of me while they investigated the tree that had fallen just behind them and just ahead of me. The spring was just what was needed for day 6.

Great work out totally do it again. Backpacked in and stayed over night. Is actually about almost 7 miles each way. As I had map the trail with my fitness pal.

From trail head sign in to hot spring 98% downhill working your hamstring and calves & that's means hiking back 98% up hills with stairway logs working those quads & butt!!!

Total time hiking in was about 2.5 hours hiking out took me about 3.5hours

Btw hot spring was awesome! :)

Friday, June 20, 2014

Took the south trail to the southern end of Manter Mdw, the meadow was nice and green but if you want to hike the other trails in the Domeland Wilderness with the exception of the N. Manter Trail be prepared to do some bushwacking as these trails haven't be maintained for years

Monday, June 09, 2014

The trails in this wilderness area are in need of lots of work as alot of them are to brushy or just plain faint. Just got off of the Woodpecker Trail which is the main trail in this wilderness and I mind as well have been cross-country hiking as this trail is almost non-existant it is good in some places for just a few hundred yards then its back to bushwacking. So unless you like bushwacking or route finding dont waste the time and fuel to drive up here. Thank God I live local.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Took North trail in and South Trail out. Camped at the head of the Manter Creek at the Eastern edge of the meadow. Two large fire rings seperated by 100yds or so. Nice camp spot.
Rained all night, big fat drops. Lightening and Thunder. Warm during the day and cool at night.

This was a great trail! The fishing was awesome and it is hard to beat catching one of the rarest trout in the USA, The Little Kern Golden Trout. The fish would literally jump out of the water and hit my fly! I hiked in June and it got pretty hot. Great time fishing all the streams and definitely worth the trip!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Took the South Manter Meadow Trail. Late May. Was a great hike, all downhill on the way in. Described as moderate but was easy enough. 2.5 miles one-way, shouldn't take more than 3-4 hours. Down in Manter it was very windy and cold all night.
Morning was crisp and frosty but wind was gone. Trail easy to find and stay on. Plenty of shade on the trail. Trail follows a small creek. Bring filter if you don't bring water.
Meadow = soggy, don't walk through the meadow.
Only saw 6 people walking on the other side of the meadow. Very quite and secluded location.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

This trail had just been maintained last year ( Summer 2011 ), I know because when I backpacked Willow Mdws I met a trail maintence crew doing some brush clearing. I would do this hike in late June til the middle of July as both Trout and Willow Mdws are real green that time of year. Also there are some really good campsites at both of the meadows.

Friday, February 10, 2012

This is a well maintained trail, very wide in some places, the good thing about this trail its mostly downhill to the river but its a long uphill climb back. This trail is also heavily used you will not be alone on this trail.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

This is a good well maintained trail thats all down hill but hiking back out is very strenous.

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