Buffam Falls

EASY 3 reviews

Buffam Falls is a 1.9 mile loop trail located near Amherst, Massachusetts that features a waterfall. The trail is good for all skill levels and primarily used for hiking and walking. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

1.9 miles 259 feet Loop

dog friendly

kid friendly




wild flowers

An easy and pleasant walk through a hemlock forest alongside running waters. Protected by the Pelham Conservation Commission and Town of Amherst Watershed land, this area makes for pleasant, and relatively easy walking. The entire hike is in a hemlock forest that lines the ravines of Buffam and Amethyst Brooks. These evergreen trees, as well as mountain laurel, make fall, winter and early spring hikes here colorful -- and these are also the times when insect populations are low of non-existent. The woods also support a variety of mushrooms that are found in abundance during late August and September. From your car, walk north along the road to the conservation area entrance which is opposite the first house on your left. Walk down to the wooden bridge where you will find the white markers of the Metacomet-Monadnock Trail. Cross the bridge and immediately bear right, following white markers, on a wide, hemlock-lined trail alongside Buffam Brook. Some falls are found on your right as you descend further into this dark but beautiful ravine. In just a short distance you'll reach a key junction on this hike, a point overlooking the confluence of Buffam and Amethyst Brooks. This spot stands aside the last of the several smooth-slab falls on Buffam Brook and the steps ahead will lead you down to the bottom of these falls wehre there is a deep, clear pool. But to stay on this hike, make a left and head east on the M-M Trail, which quickly drops down to the level of Amethyst Brook. Follow the white markers alongside the boulder-filled Amethyst Brook for about .1 mile to a point where it suddenly drops down to brook level and crosses it on rocks. This crossing could be difficult during times of high water. If you can't cross it, turn back. If you cross, be careful on the rocks, which can be slippery. Now on the south bank of Amethyst Brook, the trail swings away from it temporarily but continues heading east. At a point about .75 miles from your starting point you'll come to one of Amherst's reservoirs with its old dam and water-control structures. At the far end of the reservoir, cross the inlet on a bridge, turn right and return to the north bank. Only 50 feet from the bridge crossing, turn left (west) leaving the M-M Trail and follow an unmarked trail that parallels the north shore of the reservoir, though high above it. Although the trail is unmarked, it is generally easy to follow and will lead you back the way you came, though on the opposite side of Amethyst Brook. When you come to a point where it meets an old woods road that once crossed the brook, turn right onto this rocky and wet road for only 75 feet and look for a continuation of the unmarked trail on your left. Turn here and follow the path heading east again, high above the ravine. After a light descent and a swing to the left, you should rejoin the M-M Trail where it overlooks the falls and the meting of the Brooks. From this lovely spot, turn right and follow the wite markers back the way you came along Buffam Brook (north and uphill) and out to Valley Road. Your car is a short walk downhill on the road to the left.

4 months ago

Very nice trail to walk with the dogs and get them wet in the waters. All around great time!

1 year ago

so beautiful!!!! amazing forest, gorgeous brookside trail, and don't forget your swimsuit!! will absolutely be back.

when on North Valley Road, it's easiest to park at the bottom of the hill to the quarry, near the M-M trailhead on your left. then walk up the road a bit and on your right just past the end of the guide rail is a little hidden footpath. this leads to the blue trailhead (which shares some ground with white M-M markings). I took the path right along the creek. so, so beautiful.

2 years ago

This is a fantastic hike during hot summer days. It is cool in the forest, and at the confluence of the brooks is a great, cold, swimming hole (at your own risk!)