Navigate Down Icon

Kern County, California

General Services ♦ Parks and Recreation ♦ Kern River Campground


General Location: The Lake Ming Road exit off the Alfred Harrell Highway leads down to the lake. There is a sign at the West Beach which marks the half mile road to the campground overlooking the Kern River. This retreat is only 10 miles from Bakersfield.

Get Map

Campground/Campsite Map (PDF)

Activities and Amenities

  • 28 landscaped acres
  • Two sections: 25 campsites each; maximum of 8 people per site
  • Picnic tables and fire rings
  • Restrooms and showers
  • Drinking water spigots; trash barrels throughout the campground
  • Sewage dump site on the road near the campground exit
  • The campground is dry camping only. Generators are allowed.
  • As a general rule, please observe the Quiet Hours from 10pm-7am.
  • Nearby attractions: Lake Ming, California Living Museum, Hart Park

You can make an on-line reservation for Kern River Campground by using the link above, or by calling the Parks reservation desk at 661-868-7000.
  • Please have a valid credit card to make an on-line campsite reservation or to reserve by telephone.
  • Reservations are available any time prior to arrival at the campground, based on availability, and may be made up to one year in advance.
  • One vehicle is included with each campsite reservation; 8 person maximum per campsite.
  • Additional fees may apply, payable upon entry at the campground, such as dog fees, second vehicle fees, etc. Please see the KRCG Fee Schedules below for further information.
  • You must be 18 years or older to reserve a campsite.
Reservations are available any time prior to arrival at the campground, based on availability, and up to one year in advance.

No refunds will be issued for cancellation of a reservation, only credit towards a future stay for up to one year. Cancellations must be made at least 72 hours prior to date of stay. Please contact the office for details.

Campsites can still be rented on a first come/first serve basis based on availability of campsites 7 days a week.

Campers will be allowed to rent up to 2 campsites per transaction at the kiosk. Campers requesting more than 2 campsites should call the main office. Requests on number of campsites will be subject to availability, and discretion of Department staff.

Payment for entire duration of stay must be made in full at the time of reservation.

Please Note: NO CASH is accepted at the campground. Preferred payment method is by credit card or debit card. Effective date for enforcement is 1/1/2018.
Reservation Fees/Per Campsite

$8.00 Reservation Fee
$7.00 Transfer Fee
Daily Fees

Peak Season - March 15 - October 15 Non-Peak Season - October 16 - March 14
$24.00 for first vehicle $12.00 for first vehicle
$11.00 for second vehicle $7.00 for second vehicle
$5.00 per dog (limit 2) $5.00 per dog (limit 2)

Disabled Veterans may present their Veteran’s ID Card or Letter from the Local or Federal VA Department showing “Service Connected” status, and another matching form of ID, to purchase the Lifetime Camping Pass.

If you are eligible, please contact the Parks Administration office, Camp Host or Parks personnel prior to purchasing a campsite to set up your Senior Citizen, Disabled Citizen, or to obtain a Disabled Veterans Lifetime Camping Pass.

Senior (age 62+) and Disabled Citizen Discount $2.00 discount/per campsite
Disabled Veterans & former POWs Lifetime Camping Pass $10.00, with verifying documentation
Additional Information

  • Fees are non-refundable and must be paid in advance.
  • You may not camp for more than 14 consecutive days in peak season.
  • You may not camp for more than 31 consecutive days in off-peak season.
  • Maximum number of persons overnight in a campsite is 8 persons.
  • Check-in time is 2:00 pm.
  • Check-out time is 12:00 noon.
  • Quiet hours will be enforced from 10:00 pm - 7:00 am.
  • Please check for campsite availability, (at the kiosk or with park personnel), and make payment prior to occupying your campsite. Permits must be posted at campsites.
  • Be sure to arrive early if camping on holidays or weekends.
  • The two sections of the campground receive irrigation in alternate 7 day cycles; therefore it may be necessary to reassign some campers to another campsite.
  • Since park personnel may be working on the grounds as an ongoing part of their duties at the same time campers are present, cooperation is necessary for the sake of the overall camp maintenance schedule.
  • The Kern River's currents sweep both adults and children to their deaths every year. Children even momentarily unattended are at great risk.
  • The discharge of all weapons or firearms, including bows and arrows, spears, BB guns, pellet guns and sling shots, is prohibited.
  • Depositing trash in waste receptacles and cleaning off tables properly will preserve public health as well as the natural beauty of the campground.
  • All pets must stay on a leash for the sake of other campers and wildlife. Horses may not enter the campground.
  • All fires must be lit only in the designated fireplaces. Campers must bring their own fuel because no cutting or use of campground vegetation is permitted.