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Kernville and Kern River Valley

Fields of poppies along the road.
Fields of poppies along the road.

About an hour and a half away from Ridgecrest is a hidden treasure of natural beauty. If the wind is blowing too hard or the weather is too extreme in Ridgecrest, a short drive to Kernville will be a pleasant get away. This time of year the wild flowers are blooming all around making the drive even more pleasant.

Lake Isabella, notice the mountains are orange from the poppies.
Heather Spurlock

Kernville hosts many activities to fill the day. Outdoor activities like rafting, fishing and kayaking, on the famous Kern River, are popular this time of year. But also try mountain biking, climbing and hiking for a fun adventure. Equipment outfitting is abundantly available check this site (Kernville Chamber of Commerce) for more information on companies.

If outdoor activities are not the type of afternoon that sounds delightful, then why not enjoy a little shopping in the downtown area. Several antique stores packed full of unique treasures offer an exciting opportunity to acquire an unusual find. A little park edges the Kern River allowing for a relaxed place just to sit and enjoy nature on a bench. Need a family outing? Pack a picnic or pick up some food from one of the nearby restaurants, and let the kids play on the playground while enjoying beautiful weather and refreshing air.

On the way home stop at the Kern River Preserve, right off the road and located through a field usually full of cows, but open to the public. The site is managed by Audubon-California. Abundant bird populations stop at this location providing an opportunity to see many different types of birds.

Spend an afternoon in Kernville or stay the weekend and camp in one of the many campgrounds. With a host of different activities for families and individuals alike it is sure to be a trip well spent.


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