Day 4 – Big Arroyo Junction to Kern Hotsprings

  • 12.75 Miles
  • 1,189′ Elevation Gain
  • 3,902′ Elevation Loss
  • 14 Total Miles (includes cumulative elevation gain)

Plateau prior to dropping into the Kern River Valley

If you’re starting from Big Arroyo Junction, then you have a climb that goes slightly higher than Kaweah Gap (but your start elevation is much higher than Hamilton Lakes), otherwise if you went further the night prior then its just a short bump and a long way down. The trail is mostly high altitude before you drop down into the Kern River valley and its pretty dry and hot. Once you start dropping, it drops very fast and before you know it you’re on the valley floor. Once on the valley floor its a 2 mile hike up to Kern Hotsprings. Camping spots really don’t exist before getting into Kern Hotsprings, so you really need to make the push.

Kern Hotsprings, privacy wall surrounding the tub

Once you’re in Kern Hotsprings, you suddenly realize it was worth the effort. The water temperature was easily over 100dgrs, and made quick work of our sore muscles. There is a small privacy wall, and you can easily jump between a hot pool, warm pool, and ass cold pool (the Kern).



The top before the drop into the Kern River Valley

Burnt out forest near Funston Meadow

Looking down into the Kern River Valley

Looking back up from Kern Hot Springs


Big Arroyo Junction to Kern Hotsprings

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