Packsaddle Cave Trail

#2 of 91 trails in Sequoia National Forest
Hike begins about 16 miles north of Kernville on Mtn. 99. Just north of the Fairview Campground. Trail climbs 3 miles to the cave. Bring a flashlight to explore the cave to see the remaining stalactites and stalagmites .

6.4 miles Out & Back 900 feet
Dog Friendly
hiking trail running walking cave dogs river
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Trail gains elevation fairly constantly with a 900 ft gain to cross the ridge/saddle. Along this incline you can see deer brush. manzanita, live oak, digger pine and sagebrush. Trail dips down to the creek - crossing it about three times. Cave has stalactites and stalagmites - bring flashlight.

Brandon Brummett

3 Completed1 Reviews

Good hike.

Allison Lively

3 Completed2 Reviews

Deceptively difficult! This trail is about three miles straight up and 3 straight down, interchanging each mile. The first mile is the most difficult part, but the rest is only slightly less so. Bring LOTS of water with you and a snack - this will take you several hours! It's beautiful when you get to the creek beds, and just below the cave there is a nice shaded place to rest and relax- but its covered in trash by hikers that suck. wear good shoes, bring a headlamp for the cave, and watch the trail for snakes and scat - there was a FRESH pile of bear poo on the trail when we went!

Manuel Metzger

1 Completed1 Reviews

The hike is a little brutal when it's 101 but the cave was definitely worth it. I suggest not going in summer.

Doug Porter

2 Completed2 Reviews

Great hike, just got back today (5-30-15) my fourth time up. A little disappointed this trip because people have been littering here and there throughout the trail, leaving camping gear and small bits of trash in the cave, many stalactites and stalagmites have been cut and taken, and the walls of the cave are being littered more with graffiti each time I've gone. Still a great hike, great views, and not as highly traveled or trashed as you tend to see at more accessible areas. Also found an old attempted mine shaft (prospect) on the North side of the stream, where the waterfall is just before the trail crosses the stream for the final time before getting to the cave. Shaft went about 40-50 feet back. Also noticed an area before the cave where there is what appears to be an opening (for those who have never been) and there are two very steep trails that ascend directly up the grade to this hole. This is just a small pocket in the rock face, do not follow these trails. The trail to the cave will be a easy to moderate climb, and will branch out west from the main trail, across the grade of the range, not directly up the steep graded hill.

Alejandra Durand

2 Completed2 Reviews

We're pretty fortunate people to have this hike so close to Bakersfield. The beginning of the hike has little shade, so I would recommend a hat. We love that we're able to take our dog with us, and each time we go we only see a few people and it's not very busy. The cave definitely a good prize at the end of this hike. At the end of the hike, go right up to the rock(not around it) and start to head up the hill right about the rock. If you're struggling to get to the cave, you might have stepped off the trail. It's not too long, but it definitely feels more than a 900 elevation. I've done this hike about 3 times, and I'll continue to do it every spring. Would recommend.

Juan Viramontes

2 Completed2 Reviews

I ran this trail yesterday, 4/03/2015 it's a tough climb up but totally doable and well worth the views from the top of the ridge before you drop into packsaddle canyon. Once you get to the cave, what you see is stunning, the cave is huge inside and it is formed of beautiful crystalized formations with musk triple chambers. The round trip is not 6.5 miles as listed on here, I ran it with my GPS watch and it was just shy of 5 miles round trip. Everyone who visits the Sequoias should make this trail and cave their top priority!

Robert Thurston

2 Completed1 Reviews

I cant believe I have lived here 10 years and just did this trail this weekend for the first time, definitely worth the effort even though the first mile kicked my ass

Shawn Carman

1 Completed1 Reviews

Hiked Packsaddle Trail today with my 10 year old son. We throroughly enjoyed it. Great views, amazing greenery, and the cave was fun to explore. Definitely recommend this to anyone in the area and definitely get started early, before the afternoon heat.

Dalin Hamm

2 Completed2 Reviews

I hiked this trail February 8,2015.. The first part of the hike was the worst part because its straight uphill but after you get to the top the view is beautiful. The weather was perfect and it was sooo green. We passed the cave because we missed the markers but we turned around and found it. The cave was like nothing I've ever seen before. Definitely my favorite hike of all time.

Dalia Wilde

23 Completed5 Reviews

It's one of the harder hikes I've done, but very fun. Start early because it gets really hot and bring lots of water. We did encounter a rattlesnake on the way (after the first time we crossed the stream) so be very careful. Headlamps, and flashlights are helpful. There's not really any signs showing you you're on the right path so after you've reached the big boulder next to the three headed tree keep walking for a few minutes and when the path divides into two take the left one up the mountain and you should be able to see the cave then. Watch out for the bats on top of the cave!