Hiking Near the Johnsondale Bridge in California

by Ian Farquharson

The Johnsondale Bridge carries the Kern River Highway over the Upper Kern River in Tulare County, California. Situated around 2.5 miles east of Johnsondale, the bridge is located in the Sequoia National Forest, with the area around it offering visitors a variety of outdoor activities. This includes hiking, with trails providing an enjoyable way to view the attractions of the area.

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National Recreation Trails

National Recreation Trails in the Upper Kern Valley include the Cannell Meadow Trail. This route commences 2 miles north of Kernville, with the start point located around 18 miles south of the Johnsondale Bridge. From this point, the trail heads north towards the bridge area. Starting out as a gentle climb, the route becomes progressively steeper along its 11.5-mile length. Impressive sights for hikers to view along the route include the Kern River Valley and pine tree woodlands.

Sequoia National Forest Trails

The U.S. Forest Service manages the Sequoia National Forest, with the Upper Kern Valley area having a number of trails accessible to hikers.This includes the Rincon Trail, a 19.5-mile route following the Rincon Fault. Starting around 10 miles north of Kernville, the route runs to the forks of the Kern River, passing about a mile to the east of Johnsondale Bridge. The River Trail starts at the bridge, running north for about 5 miles on the east side of the Kern River. At its end point, the route connects to the Rincon Trail.

Giant Sequoia National Monument Trails

Visiting the Giant Sequoia National Monument provides hikers the opportunity to view huge sequoia trees. This region of the Sequoia National Forest boasts some of the largest trees, with the Trail of 100 Giants running through the area. Located in Long Meadow Grove, around 5 miles northwest of Johnsondale Bridge, the route comprises 1.3 miles of paved trail. This runs in a loop around a grove of giant sequoias, with interpretive signs along the route providing hikers with information about the trees.

Hiking Clubs

The Kern River Valley Hiking Club provides the opportunity for hikers to join organized events. The club schedules regular hikes on the trails in the Kern River Valley, and some take place in the Johnsondale Bridge area. Local volunteers familiar with the trails lead the hikes, providing visitors with the chance to enjoy a hiking experience in the company of a knowledgeable guide, as well as other hiking enthusiasts.

About the Author

Ian Farquharson has worked as a freelance writer since 2008. He has written for individual clients, as well as various online publications, and brings sports and travel expertise to eHow. He has a Bachelor of Engineering in civil engineering from Dundee College of Technology.

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