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California whitewater, Kern River

Kern county, Sandy Flat to Democrat Hot Springs section whitewater kayaking, rafting, and paddling information.


CLASS III-V     11.5 miles
  The beautiful scenery of Kern County and the sparkling of the sunlight on the water have people coming here. Whitewater rafting and kayaking in this state is often more difficult than elsewhere, so if you're not from around here don't forget that lots of rivers here are not for beginners. A good workout and just being out on the river for a while are sure to keep you coming back for more. The river winds through the Southern Sierra Nevada and
    you get great scenery. This section of Kern River is 11.5 miles long and has been determined by American Whitewater to be a class III-V section. Some people prefer whitewater rafting and some kayaking, either way this area
has a large number of paddling rivers. There arenít any hotels right nearby but if you're willing to drive a short distance then no problem but do book a room before you come because it is a very popular destination. This river system is full of great paddling stretches, the Sandy Flat to Democrat Hot Springs stretch is just one of them. If you have the time you can make this a two day trip, so pack your sleeping bag. The put-in is not too  
far from Bakersfield, as you can see on the road map further down. For all you camping people there are campgrounds nearby.

Briefly about the general area:
Why not take a refreshing hike along the Virginia Trail, and Beaver Canyon is absolutely a great place to have a look at. That right there is heaps of exciting things already but it goes on, the Southern Sierra Nevada has it all. Kern River is right by the Bull Run Cattle Drive; you'll in all probability meet some people from Bodfish here. This river is always fun. A day on the slopes of Shirley Meadow is just what you need, and a spree to Kern River wouldn't be complete without taking a look at Delonegha Hot Springs.

Kern River, Sandy Flat to Democrat Hot Springs road map
Printable road map with the put-in and take-out locations clearly marked.


Detailed Map

Stats for this river stretch

Local weather forecast

These outdoors activities are available near Kern River.
 Whitewater Near Kern River:
Kern River, Kern County, 5 miles away
      Class III-V - 11.5 miles long (Sandy Flat to Democrat Hot Springs)
Kern River, Kern County, 5 miles away
      Class V+ - 12 miles long (Democrat Hot Springs to mouth of canyon)
Whitewater Outfitter - Chuck Richard's White Water, Kern County, 9 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Kern River, Kern County, 10 miles away
      Class II-III - 7 miles long (Lake Isabella to Sandy Flat)
Whitewater Outfitter - Kern River Outfitters, Kern County, 13 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Kern River, Kern County, 13 miles away
      Class II-IV - 4.8 miles long (Mouth of canyon to Lake Ming)
Whitewater Outfitter - Hyside Inflatables River Trips, Kern County, 17 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Whitewater Outfitter - Sierra South MT Sports, Kern County, 17 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Whitewater Outfitter - Eagle Rafting, Kern County, 17 miles away
      Whitewater outfitter
Kern River, Tulare/ Kern County, 25 miles away
      Class III-V - 17 miles long (Johnsondale Bridge to Powerhouse #3)
 Ski Areas Near Kern River:
Shirley Meadow, California , 9 miles away, 600 foot drop, 3 lifts, 7 runs
Mt Waterman, California , 88 miles away, 1300 foot drop, 3 lifts, 10 runs
Mountain High, California , 91 miles away, 1600 foot drop, 16 lifts, 62 runs
Ski Sunrise, California , 91 miles away, 816 foot drop, 4 lifts, 24 runs
Mt. Baldy, California , 99 miles away, 2100 foot drop, 4 lifts, 28 runs
 Marinas Near Kern River:
French Gulch Marina, Lake Isabella , 9 miles away
Reds Kern Valley Marina, Lake Isabella , 12 miles away
 Hotels Near Kern River:
WoodSpring Suites Bakersfield, Bakersfield , 24 miles away
Americas Best Value Inn, Bakersfield , 24 miles away
Hampton Inn And Suites-Bakersfield-Hwy 58 CA, Bakersfield , 25 miles away
Fairfield Inn & Suites Tehachapi, Tehachapi , 25 miles away
Holiday Inn Express & Suites TEHACHAPI HWY 58/MILL ST., Tehachapi , 25 miles away
 Campgrounds Near Kern River:
Davis Campground, Kern County, 4 miles away
Hobo, Bodfish, 5 miles away
Breckenridge Campground, Kern County, 5 miles away
 Trails Near Kern River:
Virginia Trail, Kern , 12 miles away, 4.1 hiking miles, 2879 feet elevation difference
Bull Run Cattle Drive, Tulare , 16 miles away, 3.6 hiking miles, 1739 feet elevation difference
Old Sled Trail, Tulare , 16 miles away, 2.1 hiking miles, 1313 feet elevation difference
Tobias Creek Trail, Tulare , 20 miles away, 6.5 hiking miles, 4434 feet elevation difference
 Public Lands Near Kern River:
Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park, Three Rivers - CA , 54 miles away
Sequoia National Forest, California , 32 miles away
 Golf Courses Near Kern River:
Rio Bravo Country Club, Bakersfield , 18 miles away
Kern Valley Golf Course, Kernville , 19 miles away
 Lakes Near Kern River
Isabella Lake, Kern , 10 miles away
Julia Lake, Kern , 10 miles away

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Some content, including Reach Name, Class, Coordinates, and Length, comes from American Whitewater with permission.