Kids

OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES FOR CHILDREN

Photo of kids playing in the snow on Boggs Mountain Demonstration State Forest

Snow play on Boggs Mountain Demonstration State Forest

Logo of Children's Outdoor Bill of Rights

Clean air, wide open spaces, lakes, forests, woodlands, playgrounds, and even stargazing – Lake County has so much to offer for kids!

The KRT supports the California Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights as its mission resonates with the KRT’s objective to promote physical fitness and appreciation of and care for our natural environment and history.

 

Remember to have an ample supply of water for yourself and your children!

 

EASY HIKES FOR YOUNGER CHILDREN

Photo of school children on a field trip at Anderson Marsh State Historic Park

Anderson Marsh

Anderson Marsh State Historic Park – Easy hikes on level ground. Great area for wildlife viewing and interpretive activities. Docent tours of trails and historic ranch house every second Saturday of each month except for January, September and December. Hiking only, and sorry, no pets allowed.

Boggs Mountain Demonstration State Forest – Easy-to-moderate hikes from the main parking lot would be the Interpretive Trail, Gail’s Trail, and Mac’s Trail. The areas around Calso and Ridge campgrounds are also fine for tooling around on a bike for beginner mountain bikers. View this trail map for difficulty levels.

Photo of Clark's Island in the spring

Clark’s Island

Boggs Lake Ecological Reserve – A fascinating vernal pool with a mostly-level trail built under a forest canopy on Mt Hannah, off Harrington Flat Rd. The trail is maintained by the Lake County Land Trust on behalf of The Nature Conservancy. Boggs Lake Reserve features some of the most unique native plants in the state of California.

Clark’s Island – A darling little island with its own covered bridge in Clearlake Oaks, complete with a “floating island” and “living dock”. Gorgeous willow trees and flowering plants make this a special gem in the spring, and a favorite for waterfowl enthusiasts!

Clear Lake State Park – The Clear Lake State Park Interpretive Association holds guided hikes on mostly level trails near the Clear Lake shoreline on the third Saturday of each month. There are three short trails – the Kelsey Creek Trail (mostly level), Dorn Trail (hillier), and the Indian Trail (level meadow). Bikes are allowed on pavement.

Photo of Kids at Highland Springs Recreation Area

Highland Springs

Highland Springs Recreation Area – Broad meadows along Adobe Reservoir and a Lakeside trail around Highland Springs Reservoir make this destination a favorite in the cooler months, or a great swimming destination (at the Highland Springs Reservoir) in the summer.

Middletown Trailside Park – Meadows and woodland trails on 107 level acres just outside of Middletown. A good area to learn how to ride a mountain bike as the trails are mostly level. Lots of picnic tables with very cool outdoor art exhibits, too!

Photo of kids and dogs hiking at Cache Creek

Redbud Trail

Rabbit Hill – Though moderately strenuous, this short trail quickly leads little feet up to a great vista point of the Mayacamas. The Lake County Land Trust manages this 10-acre property, and plans to  gather an oral history of the property.

Redbud Trail – This trailhead into the Cache Creek Wilderness Area offers an open meadow in the first mile for easy strolls. It then continues a moderate ascent into oak woodlands, so use your best judgement to determine a suitable distance for your kids. Make sure to bring lots of water! This wilderness area is closed to bikes.

Rodman Slough County Park – A 40-acre park along beautiful Rodman Slough. The trails are short and hilly in some spots, but it’s a great area to explore shoreline wildlife (river otters, turtles, ducks and other waterfowl).

Rodman Preserve Nature Education Center – Operated by the Lake County Land Trust, the preserve is open every Saturday morning at 9am (May-September) and 8am (June-August) for guided walks on mostly level trails.  This area is especially ideal for birding. The Center holds quarterly events presented by experts on topics ranging from the oak trees of Lake County, to migrating and resident birds, to the insects and other fauna that occupy the wetlands on the property.

PARKS WITH PLAYGROUNDS

Photo of play structure at Kelseyville County Park

Kelseyville County Park

Alpine Park – Northshore – Lucerne
Austin Park – Eastshore – City of Clearlake
Keeling Park – Northshore – Nice
Kelseyville Park – Konocti Region – Kelseyville
Hidden Valley Lake Park & Campground – South County – Hidden Valley Lake
Lakeside Park – Konocti Region – Lakeport/Kelseyville
Library Park – Westshore – City of Lakeport
Lucerne Harbor Park – Northshore – Lucerne
Middletown Park – South County – Middletown
Nylander Park – Northshore – Clearlake Oaks
Redbud Park – Eastshore – City of Clearlake
Russell Rustici Park – Eastshore – Lower Lake
Upper Lake Park – Northshore – Upper Lake

Kids_SkateboardingBMX or SKATEBOARDING

Austin Park – Eastshore – City of Clearlake
Kelseyville Park – Konocti Region – Kelseyville
Elk Mountain Middle Creek Staging Area – Northshore – North of Upper Lake
South Cow Mountain – Westshore – Via Scotts Creek west of Lakeport

 

Child riding horse at Owen Ranch, Middletown, CAHORSEBACK RIDING LESSONS

A-1 Horse Programs – Owen Ranch
(also organize Middletown Rodeo Friday Night Saddle Series)
Cole Creek Equestrian Center
Highland Springs Equestrian Center

 

 

Photo of kid jumping off rope swing in Blue Lakes, Lake County, CA

Blue Lakes

SWIMMING, PADDLING & FISHING

Blue Lakes – West of Upper Lake off Hwy 20
Moderate day-use fees and watercraft rentals at local resorts
Clear Lake – Click on the link and use the search button for all locations
Highland Springs Reservoir – West of Kelseyville
Indian Valley Reservoir – 1 hr northeast of Clearlake via Walker Ridge Rd. or Bartlett Springs Rd (from the Northshore)
Lake Pillsbury – 1 1/2 hrs north of Lakeport in the Mendocino National Forest (with great campgrounds!)

Photo of child with bass