I traveled out to California a couple weeks ago with my girlfriend. While we were visiting friends in LA and San Diego, I still found time to put some fishing on our schedule.
We headed up into Sequoia National Forest, about 3 hours from our friends in Little Tokyo, and a totally different world from Los Angeles. There in the high desert, and in the off-season, the town of Kernville was void of tourists and vacationers. We enjoyed the local brewery, fly shop (nice people and very helpful), and fit in hikes at higher altitudes without any crowds (by contrast, Yosemite farther north is renowned for having 2-3 hour waits to enter the park in the peak season). We walked among the giant sequoias at 6,500 feet, ancient trees bigger than redwoods and millennia old. And we watched the forestry service cut down massive pine trees in the same area, thunder claps rippling across the mountainside as they smashed into the earth.
I did fish the Kern River for a few hours between hiking. The river features a mix of wild trout (including rainbows, cutthroat, and goldens) at the higher altitudes, stocked fish around the town of Kernville, and bass and bream at the lower altitudes. I managed to get one take up in a catch and release portion of the river, but outside of that, I did not see any trout. The landscape was beautiful, the weather perfect, and the lack of people made the entire experience completely serene.
Pretty country just a few hours from the chaos of the city.