Buffalo Mountain-White Rock Trail

MODERATE 88 reviews
#1 of 3 trails in

Buffalo Mountain-White Rock Trail is a 4.5 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Johnson City, Tennessee that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
4.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1236 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dog friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

Great view, rhododendron gardens, beautiful stream This is a nice place to hike when you don't have a lot of time to get out of the city. The view is great, especially on a clear day. The hike isn't difficult, but if you take the White Rock trail, it is easy to get off the path. At a sign marking the direction of the access road, the trail seems to follow the stream, but this simply leads back to some small waterfalls. It is definitely worth a look if you have time, but the trail to White Rock actually goes uphill at the sign. If you stand with you back to the sign, the trail goes up the mountain over some tree roots, then curves back to the right. May/June is a popular time to visit this trail, as the rhodedendrons are in bloom. You can make the hike a loop if you take the Tip Top trail back to the parking area. Word of caution: This may not be the best place to hike alone, especially for females. Sometimes there are strange people hanging around the picnic area.

1 month ago

it was snowing with a lot of clouds when I went. parts were very steep and the trail markings are a bit confusing. the payoff might be better on a clear day

hiking
1 month ago

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1 month ago

Nice little hike if you want to just get out doors for a little bit and do a light to moderate hike.

hiking
1 month ago

I hike the loop once or twice a week year around. It's a great place to bring kids and (friendly) dogs. And a good trail for exercise since it has a pretty good elevation gain, but nothing too strenuous. I typically hike the loop + Tip Top in about an hour and twenty minutes in a fairly fast pace for exercise. Allow for 2 - 3 hours or more if you want to walk in a more leisurely pace or are bringing kids, or if you just want to take your time to enjoy the views on a pretty day.

It is more strenuous to follow the loop clock-wise than counter clock-wise as it is a steeper incline going up the east side of the mountain to White Rock compared to going up the Cascade trail on the other side. For an extra challenge as far as getting exercise, follow the Tower Ridge trail up to the towers instead of the loop towards White Rock once you see the sign . It is shorter, but an even steeper incline. It will merge back to the loop at the top, but you have to go a little bit back in the "wrong" direction of the loop if you want to see White Rock going that way.

The views from Tip Top are good towards the south, but kind of overgrown towards Johnson City in the summer months (better in the winter). The views from White Rock are very nice year around, and on a clear day there are mountains as far as the eye can see.

I will say that the people that come here looking for the waterfalls (and I meet people that do all the time) will go home disappointed. There are a couple of small streams, but no real waterfall. If you come here during or right after a heavy rainfall you might see some water-flow in the "cascade" and in the creek that comes down by the gate (still not what I or anybody I know would call a "waterfall"), but normally it's just a small trickle. Tons of options around here to see real waterfalls, but this isn't one of them.

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1 month ago

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1 month ago

the trails themselves were fairly easy to stay on. however, the trails were poorly labeled. and you didn't know which marker was for what trail. the view was beautiful, hence the 4.

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2 months ago

Great hike and dog friendly

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2 months ago

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2 months ago

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2 months ago

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2 months ago

2 months ago

The loop was a perfect hike to get outside for a little while and immerse in nature. Very quiet and calm. Challenging in some parts but very worth while.

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2 months ago

I made a short loop instead of the white rock loop (see recording). It is not worth it. The trail that leading back I did, which include the part of lady slipper loop, is really not very interesting, the forest is not in a good shape and the trail has a strong slope. I suggest to take a bit longer but much nicer full loop.

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3 months ago

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3 months ago

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3 months ago

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4 months ago

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5 months ago

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5 months ago

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5 months ago

Great hiking! Lots of uphill and downhill! At tip top point it was great but lots of flies and bugs. The white marker is to follow the trail. It took about 3 hours to do.