S fork kern rock house?

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overheadx2
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S fork kern rock house?

Post by overheadx2 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:14 pm

I’d like to do an April / May hike out of Kennedy meadows (golden trout wilderness) and needed a little intel. I’ve already hiked north a few times and thought I’d try going south to Rock House Basin. Some reports say go in out of long meadow to the southern part of Rock House basis while others say to start at the air strip close to Kennedy meadow and camp in the northern aspect. Any thoughts? Looking for a nice early season place to do some fly fishing with the wife and dog.








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John Harper
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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by John Harper » Sat Apr 21, 2018 4:07 pm

I followed the PCT along the SFK from the airstrip on Google sat view and it looks pretty nice. Just after the PCT breaks east from the SFK it looks like some rocky formations and you can see some big pools as well. Looks promising. I'd love to check that area out too. I think we are going to do that Trout Creek trip this year that got cancelled due to too much snow last year. Go from Boone Meadow down to lower TC by way of Machine Creek.

John

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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by overheadx2 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:57 pm

Thanks John, I’m doing it on May 11th. I’ll write a report.

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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by gary c. » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:45 am

The trail down from the north end of long valley is actually an old road. You park at the gate and walk down to the river. Easy hike but can get pretty warm coming back up because it's without shade but it's mostly exposed on the northern trail also. Coming in from the airport trail there is also a fair amount of sandy sections. Keep your eyes open for rattlers. I can't say that they are as bad as some of the reports I've read but I did see one on both of my trips into that area.
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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by overheadx2 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:48 pm

Gary, any suggestions of which area you preferred. Hiking a trail over a road sounds better, but the destination does matter.

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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by gary c. » Tue Apr 24, 2018 2:32 am

I'm not sure which is better, mostly just different. It's been quite a few years since I hiked in from Long Valley. The Long Valley trail is shorter but not as nice of scenery as from the north. The LV trail is not so much a road anymore because it only sees foot traffic. The trail from the air port runs a short distance back from the river most of the time but you do get some decent views and I really enjoyed all the beaver dams and lodges.
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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by richlong8 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:15 am

I thought I would chime in with a few thoughts about Rockhouse Basin. I live in Bakersfield, and usually come in to the Basin at least once a year, and have fished and traveled thru all this country from Kennedy Meadows almost all the way to 1 mile of 2 south of where the Long valley trail comes into the river. Here is one trip report I posted. http://www.highsierratopix.com/communit ... f=6&t=9216
As for entries: there are 3 choices, #1-the PCT south, as mentioned. Most people will camp in the area of the Trout Creek/South fork confluence. Fishing is good from here south down into Rockhouse. Going upstream, there are areas of very sluggish water due to beavers, and fishing is usually mediocre. As you make your way into the Rockhouse area, from the area where the PCT heads east a mile from the river(about 4m downstream of Kennedy Meadows, there can be some interesting fishing for awhile going downstream, and even better going upstream. Hint!
2nd entry: from the "locked brown gate", descend the old 4 wheel drive road to the basin. Here, you can either go downstream or upstream. If you ford the river in the area of the old Manter Creek trail, you can make your way downstream a long way, with pretty good fishing. It is possible to go upstream all the way to trout creek using the old 4 wheel drive roads, which are now the trails of Rockhouse, if you come in from the brown gate. Not much in the way of campsites.
Entry 3: instead of going in by the brown gate, drive about a mile more, and the road will intersect the PCT. Find a place to park, which can be difficult, or just park in the parking area by the brown gate. If you get on the PCT north, it will put you approximately in the middle of Rockhouse, but the PCT does not go down to the river. you have to follow a wash, or gully to the river, travel is easy with a compass and map, or GPS. Just be alert for the rattlers, and if you seriously fish, you might want to bring along a pair of hand pruners for the willow groves to keep from going crazy. The areas of the river that are the hardest to get to often contain the best fish. I have pulled out up to 16" fat browns out of the South fork, but 11-13 inch is much more common.
Hope that helps. Please release the fish you don't eat. I would hate to think that I am giving up this information to people who would ruin the fishing. Good fishing in California is getting hard to find, and some of the best remaining fishing is on the rivers in areas that are difficult to access.

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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by richlong8 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:19 am

The "brown gate" mentioned in my post is the gate blocking the wheel drive road that descends into Rockhouse, about 4 miles north of the Long Valley Campground turnoff.

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Re: S fork kern rock house?

Post by overheadx2 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:21 pm

Thanks Rich, dont worry about your fish, Im a barbless C&R guy. Thanks for the input!

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