Lake Isabella - Lakes, Trails, and Ghost Towns
Travel Time
One way
2 hour 45 min
Estimated Cost
87 $ - 175 $
20 $ - 30 $
60 $ - 120 $
Restaurants / Bars
7 $ - 25 $
87 $ - 175 $

An oasis of calm situated on the edge of Sequoia National Park in California, Lake Isabella is an awe inspiring sight which never fails to delight locals and tourists alike with stunning vistas and plenty of activities. Camping, boating, fishing and hiking; you could spend a few days at this isolated lake in the desert and still run out of time to experience everything it has to offer.

The result of a large dam on nearby Kern River, Lake Isabella was created by the US Army back in 1953 but today you can find a recreational area with majestic peaks and open skies towering high above the most pristine waters in the state. As mentioned, this is just as popular with Californians as it is with first time visitors and once you catch a glimpse of this hidden treasure to the south of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, you will need no reminder for any of the reasons why.

20 $ - 30 $
Travel time
2 hour 45 min
Estimated Fuel Cost
20 $ - 30 $

Lake Isabella is located just south of where the Kern River is divided and just a short distance from the main highway. In fact, driving from Highway 178 is an experience in itself with 45 minutes of beautiful views providing a memorable prelude to the main attraction in the mountains.

Bakersfield is the nearest city and you can reach the lake from here by taking the main State Highway 178 before joining Highway 155 from Delano. As previously stated; this is a very scenic drive and should take you no more than 45 minutes. Quite steep and with one bend leading into another, take care driving this route, especially in winter as there can often be ice when the temperature drops.