White Rock Loop is a 5.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Johnson City, Tennessee that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length5.1 miElevation gain1,354 ftRoute typeLoop
Kid friendlyHikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingDog friendlyForestViewsWildflowersWildlife
Description
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Getting There

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.

Johnson City Parks & Rec (423) 283-5815

From I-81, take Exit 57-A to Johnson City, which puts you on I-26 (formerly I-181). Take Exit 36 to State of Franklin Rd. Turn right at the bottom of the ramp. Stay on State of Franklin for about 5 miles. Just past ETSU, turn right on University Parkway. Follow this road to the redlight where it intersects with Cherokee Rd. Turn right on Cherokee Rd, then take the next left onto Buffalo Rd. Follow Buffalo Rd. for about a mile. Buffalo Rd will take a sharp left and High Ridge Rd will be to the right. Take High Ridge Rd. It is about another 1-2 miles to the trailhead, but a gate marks the entrance to Buffalo Mountain Park about half way up. This gate is frequently closed in the winter. Once you reach the picnic area, follow the one-way loop around about 3/4 of its length. On the right, there is a small parking area adjacent to the trailhead.

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Daylight
Reviews (309)
Photos (574)
Recordings (246)
Completed (825)
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Stacey Williams
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Hiking

Early morning hike before work...had the mountain to myself and it was incredible

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Stacey Williams
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Hiking

Checked out the noggin for the first time...and wow...beautiful trail with multiple creek crossings

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Sam Gould
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Hiking

To avoid very long and steep trails go counterclockwise. Best views are on the clockwise side.

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Beth Bowling
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Hiking

I suggest turning your Alltrails on for this one, we got turned around a few times

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Rachel Wakefield
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Hiking

My friend and I hiked this trail a couple of days ago. It has a lot of incline, and some areas are quite narrow. I wouldn't recommend it for small children, especially during wet conditions. I would say it's on the high end of moderate, as the elevation gain adds a good bit to how strenuous the trail is. It took us about 3hr to complete, but we weren't rushing and stopped to take photos several times. The trail is very well marked with white blazes, and all of the cross trails are well marked with signs. The signs also have QR codes you can scan to get a map of the trail system. I would hike this trail again.

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Stacey Williams
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Hiking

Super clear and very crisp lunchtime hike

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Andrew Love
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Hiking

Great Trail hard doing clockwise loop counter clockwise would have been easier. No water sources on backside of loop so make sure you have plenty of water if you are a heavy drinker!

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Naomi Yencich
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Hiking

White loop was clear, Fork Knob is still covered in leaves and pretty steep.

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ashley harrell
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Marco Nebb
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Hiking

Great fun trail, but I happened to hike right after it snowed, so it was a bit sketchy in some areas, try to hike on dry days or in the summer

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ashley harrell
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Meek Rebecca
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Hiking

We did this with our 2 daughters (10 & 8 years old) and our dog. Gorgeous views- well marked. Highlight was having snow/sleet fall on us a few minutes at the top!

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Kamron RH
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Evi Auc
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bombogenesis 6
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Daniel Waugh
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Hiking

good trail, we went counter clockwise and i think that was a good choice as the descent on the 2nd half was steep. Some great views. Not a lot of parking so get there early.

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Daniel Arndt
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Danansi Kouame
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HikingGreat!

Challenging and interesting - made it up and back after an intense leg day and it still felt great. Found me a nice rock to do some reading.

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Dawn Simpson
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Hiking
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Naomi Yencich
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Hiking

Tough with the trail covered with leaves. I would recommend going counterclockwise on the loop - clockwise is straight up for the first hour

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Jerome Cook
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Kalen Hayden
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Hiking

Great hike!

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Brian Ingram
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Hiking

Great trail! Moderately hard.

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Ann Johnson
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Brian Rosecrance
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I agree with some of the other reviews. This is not a moderate level hike. It is difficult

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Darren Overlin
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Not too aggressive, kid friendly. My wife, 9 year old daughter and I really enjoy the beauty of the trail

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Wayne Davis
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Hiking

It was a 9:30 AM Saturday morning start after two days of rain. Temperatures were supposed to make it to the 70s and it was an overcast morning. The group was looking for more time on the trails than in the car so we stayed local and decided on White Rock Loop at Buffalo Mountain just south of Johnson City. Hats off to the trail maintenance club(s) at Buffalo Mountain. The trails had excellent signage and blazes. Just when you were ready to see a blaze, there it would be, a bright white rectangle that almost glowed from an appropriate height on a tree, or staring up at you from the rocks! There were a number of intersecting trails and side trips, no doubt to some beautiful overlooks. After two days of rain and a 50° morning we were hoping for the clouds to lift so we could take in some of those wonderful views. That was not to be, but it made you take more notice of what a pretty trail it was. Fog wasn’t the only thing in the air.... This late September morning hinted that Fall was rapidly approaching. The 5.1 mile trail had almost 1500 feet of elevation change. That was more than an adequate workout for the group. The trail surface had frequent variation from the cushiony soft mulch like surface to a rooty, and occasionally rocky surface, that on this day after all of the rain, was rather slippery. The trail tended toward the difficult side of moderate. Watch your step, but don’t allow that concentration on your footing to make you miss the beauty of the trail.

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Kirby Lastinger
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Running

This is a great hike for those that like great views. Is fairly rugged and some areas could be challenging for those not in good shape.

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Mark Bender Sr.
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Deanna User
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