Buffalo National River Chamber of Commerce

Buffalo River Attraction Guide #1

Ponca Elk Education Cente

r (in Ponca)   Directions
GPS:  36.02215, -93.36141 

AGFC elk education center, nationally recognized facility.
Open daily 10 - 4:30 PM, Closed Tuesday and Wednesday
(870) 861-2432

Lost Valley Hiking Trail

  (2 miles south of Ponca)   Directions
Trail Map
GPS:  36.00787, -93.36625
(trail open, but barrier free trail closed)
NPS  The most popular hiking trail in the upper Buffalo River area. Barrier free stretch, suitable for families. Eden Falls, Native American shelter, waterfall in cave, outstanding spring wildflowers.

Boxley Valley Elk Herd

  (Highway 43 & 21)    Directions    Web    Blog
GPS:  35.97717, -93.40219                              Boxley Valley PDF Map

Home of Arkansas' famous elk herd, arguably the most viewable in the southern US. Mornings and evenings, fall rut exceptional and runs from mid-September to mid-November.

Centerpoint Trailhead

      Directions     Centerpoint Hiking Trail Map
GPS:  36.06368, -93.36017   

This trailhead is popular with hikers and horsemen. It is one of two ways to famous Hemmed In Hollow, the dangerous Goat Trail, Sneeds Creek Trail, and Granny Henderson's cabin. Big elevation changes, not for out of shape hikers. 1,000 ft descent. For most, this is an all day hike requiring frequent rest stops.

Smith Creek Preserve

   Directions    Web
GPS:  35.93548, -93.38612

Nature Conservancy, hiking trail 500 ft. descent in 1 mile. Two track road, hiking trail, very scenic spring fed creek with outstanding spring wildflower show. Popular with photographers.  Remote.

Hawksbill Crag

      Directions  Trail Map
GPS:  35.88816, -93.4698

Popular 3 mile round trip with 200 ft elevation change. Most photographed Arkansas Landmark. Trail can be rough, a few seasonal creeks. Hazardous around bluff edges, children need to be watched closely. Bear sightings now and then.

Glory Hole

      Directions   Glory Hole Trail Map
GPS:  35.82595, -93.39737

This is a popular short hike of moderate difficulty. The Glory Hole is a waterfall through the top of a cave. It is a popular destination with hikers and most serious outdoor photographers.  Fairly remote, probably best not hiked alone. 2 miles west of Edwards Junction on HWY 16, sign in edge of woods on the south side of the road.

Compton Trailhead

      Directions       Compton Trailhead Map
GPS:  36.0817, -93.30536    

Another trailhead down to Hemmed In Hollow, Granny Hendersons, and Sneeds Creek. Very tough hike, over 1,000 ft. descent on switchback trails. Plan to take all day for this one. Don't go alone, and don't go if you are not reasonably fit. Popular with hikers and horsemen. HIH easier hike from parked canoe.

Schermerhorn Trailhead

      Directions    Schermerhorn Trail Map
GPS: 36.07326, -93.26404      

This is a popular trail for hikers. The round trip is around 2 miles. The trail leads to a falls and old bluff shelter. The bluffline is quite scenic with large boulders and pines. Many side trails to explore as well. Watch out for slippery rocks. The road to the trailhead can be hazardous in wet weather. The road past the trailhead into the park is 4WD only, and not maintained.

Steel Creek Campground

      Directions    Steel Creek Trail  Map
GPS: 36.03032, -93.3418   

Excellent campground, but also popular with sightseers and photographers. The centerpiece is Roark Bluff, that frames the Buffalo River and has given up countless memorable landscapes. Near famous Big Bluff, a nice hike on the Old River Trail, (ORT).  BRT to Ponca hike is popular, fairly easy.
Photographing Boxley Valley Elk
Family Hiking in Lost Valley
Beautiful Reflecting Pool, Smith Creek Preserve
Ponca Elk Education Center
Spring Dogwood Blossom, Upper Wilderness
Bluff Pine and Rock at Schermerhorn Trail
Fall at Centerpoint Trailhead
The Glory Hole
Bluffline in Ponca Wilderness by Compton Trailhead
Fall Floating In Steel Creek Campground

Upper Buffalo River Area
Ponca & Boxley Area

Buffalo Outdoor Center Canopy Tour

Buffalo River Canopy Tour

  $89  Buffalo Outdoor Center    Directions   
GPS:  36.02215, -93.36141    (GPS is to BOC, Canopy Tour Operator)
The Buffalo River Canopy Tour introduces visitors to the canopy of an Ozark Mountain hardwood forest and its own bird, plant, and animal life. Harnessed participants glide or zip on cables through the treetops to large wooden landing bases along to tour.

Upper Buffalo Mountain Biking Trails  -- New June 2014
GPS: 35.866, -93.494    Map to Entrance
    Forest Service Topo Map
National class mountain biking trails launched in June 2014 by the Forest Service in the Upper Buffalo Wilderness. Features 35 miles of riding trails for all levels from beginner to expert. Can also be hiked. No camping, no facilities. Pack what you need in, pack out your trash. Entrance just south of Whitaker Point off Cave Mountain Road.
Mountain Biker