First stop in California was Kernville, home of the Kern River. We met up with out friend Alex who was kind enough to show us around for a few days.
First river was a warm up on Brush Creek, a short steep series of slides and falls, which drops into the Kern River. Levels were low, but a lot of fun was had. This was followed by the Limestone section of the Kern. We finished the day with some play on the Kern through Kernville.
The next day we hooked up with more locals (Eric and Rebecca from Kern River Brewery!, plus others) and headed up to the Kaweah drainage, and the Sequoia National Park. Rumor had it that Clover Creek was in condition right now, which had unbelievably great granite slides and drops. As we drove up through the National park, up past 6000 ft, we passed through the giant trees forest, where enormous Sequoia trees soared into the sky all around us.
A short hike brought us to river, and all out doubts were erased as we cast our eyes on a slice of Californian perfection; good water levels and beautiful slides that went on forever. Unfortunately the trail ended at the take out, so we continued our hike up the granite bedrock alongside the creek.
A mile or so hike was all time and energy permitted, but gave us numerous excellent stretches around the odd portage. All went well, and several hours later we were back at the cars.
We camped in the national park alongside the Kaweah river, and the following day Cheryl, Simon and Alex ran a mellow class 4 section on the Kaweah down to Three rivers, while the others headed back to town.