Hike the Fen Trail at Kangaroo Lake

Rate this Adventure California Kangaroo Lake

Added by Lindsay Cameron

  • Distance: 3 miles roundtrip (can take the Pacific Crest Trail to go longer)
  • Duration: 2.5 hours
  • Elevation gain: 600 ft
  • Awesome view
  • Unique and interesting flora
  • Not too busy
  • Free access
  • Campground available ($15/night)

The Fen Trail around Kangaroo Lake is a beautiful secluded camping and hiking area in the Klamath Forest of Northern California. It connects to the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT), where you can hike up through Oregon and Washington to Canada, or south through to Yosemite.

The trailhead starts at the Kangaroo Lake Campground, way up in the mountains. The trail is easy to follow, starting off going up with a handful of switchbacks. It takes you through woods and scree-topped mountains. There are placards along the way, describing glacial rock formations and unique flora along the route. There are stunning views of the mountain range from the ridgetop part of the trail (starting less than 1 mile in), so bring your camera (it would make an incredible sunset view/shot)! The trail ends when it hits the PCT -- you can turn back at this point, or keep on your adventures!

There is a camping fee ($15), but day-hiking is free. Camping checkout is 2pm.

Getting there: Most directions will tell you to take Gazelle-Callahan Rd to Rail Creek Rd, and the campsite/trailhead is on Rail Creek Rd. Note that Rail Creek Rd seems longer than most Google Maps directions tell you (Google will say follow it for ~7mi). There are paper plates stuck to trees which appear to be mile-markers, and they go past 7mi from the start of the road. The Rail Creek Rd is veryyy windy, but just keep following it. There are a few gravel roads that branch off the Rail Creek Rd, but just stay on the main paved road. The campground is at the very end of the road. You can park at the campground (free unless camping overnight). The trailhead is just at the beginning of the parking lot, at the "Kangaroo Lake Campground" sign.

Pack List

  • Water
  • Good hiking shoes
  • Potentially rain gear...

If camping:

  • Tent
  • Bear Canister
  • Fill out a wilderness permit at the campground (beside the parking lot, really easy to spot)
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Camping, Chillin, Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Spring, Summer, Autumn


Family Friendly

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