Buffalo Creek Park and Trails

 

 

 

Buffalo Creek Park is a multi-use park suitable for biking, hiking, and running. The main trail is a 3.5-mile loop. The trail is rated as strenuous, due to changes in elevation.The trail has many mountain biking features, including banked turns, rollers, and berms.

There is a scenic bridge that crosses Buffalo Creek between the public parking area and the trail that users can enjoy, along with 2 ADA accessible picnic tables.  From the public parking area on Buffalo Creek Road  or the private lot in Rumbling Bald Resort, users will follow a short, gravel path to get to the trail. The first 1/4-mile of the trail accommodates two-way traffic. After that, the trail is a loop with hikers/runners going one way and bikers going the opposite way. The breakdown of which way users go each day is listed below.


More about the Park

Buffalo Creek Park is the gateway to 1500+ acres of conserved land that protects the northern headwaters of Lake Lure.  At the junction of the Loop Trail, is the Weed Patch Mountain Trail, an 8.6 mile out and back rugged trail for advanced mountain biking and hiking.

All combined, it is the only mountain bike trail system within a 20-mile radius of Lake Lure and Chimney Rock State Park.  

While the park was designed and grant-funded as a mountain biking park, it is a real treat for various outdoor enthusiasts:

-  Mountain bikers seeking to improve their climbing skills and to enjoy fast, flowing descents. 

-  Trail runners in search of a serious aerobic workout.

-  Hikers wishing to spend a couple of hours on a pleasant trail through wooded terrain with a moderate amount of climbing with views of Bald Mountain Lake, Lake Lure, and the surrounding mountains. 

-  Dog owners intent on exercising themselves and their pet companions.

-  Naturalists who will enjoy exploring the Park's ecosystems that support several unique species, including the rare green salamander.

- And, for rock climbers, the BCP Loop trail intersects a boulder field with challenging climbing opportunities.

Scenic features include:

  • An abundance of wildflowers in spring and summer
  • Small cascades
  • A boulder field with large rock crags - popular with rock climbers
  • A vista of the slopes and cliffs of nearby Young’s Mountain to the east, views of the lakes and the surrounding mountains. 

Parking: 

The public parking lot located at 2191 Buffalo Creek Road in Lake Lure can accommodate 6 – 8 vehicles. Overflow parking is allowed along the side of Buffalo Creek Road near the parking lot. There is an additional parking lot available for Rumbling Bald Resort guests inside the resort.

For trail users accessing Buffalo Creek Park and the Weed Patch Mountain Trail, there is also Parking Available at Eagle Rock on Chimney Rock State Park. 

History of Buffalo Creek Park and Weed Patch Mountain:

Located on the rugged and remote slopes of Weed Patch Mountain near the head of the Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake Lure, Buffalo Creek Park features more than 12 miles of hiking and mountain biking, front country and back country trails so that visitors may explore its scenic, natural splendor.

As one of North Carolina’s largest town-owned parks, Buffalo Creek Park is protected land that was made possible and forever conserved Located on the rugged and remote slopes of Weed Patch Mountain near the head of the Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake Lure, Buffalo Creek Park features more than 12 miles of hiking and mountain biking, front country and back country trails so that visitors may explore its scenic, natural splendor.

As one of North Carolina’s largest town-owned parks, Buffalo Creek Park is protected land that was made possible and forever conserved through extensive local and regional partnerships.

Formerly slated for residential development, the land was purchased out of bankruptcy in 2009 by local land trust, Conserving Carolina (then Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy) for the purpose of conservation.

Conserving Carolina then forever protected all of its 1,500+ acres in partnership with the Clean Water Management Trust Fund via a conservation easement in 2011. This protection ensures that its forest, waters, soils, and serene landscape are forever safeguarded from negative impacts such as development, logging, mining, and erosion & sedimentation.

The Town of Lake Lure partnered with Conserving Carolina and the North Carolina Parks and Recreation Trust Fund (PARTF) in 2012 to purchase an initial 200 acres of the protected land on Weed Patch Mountain. With funding from PARTF and the Recreational Trails Program, a 3.5 mile Loop Trail for mountain biking and hiking was completed in 2013. An initial 0.7 miles of the Weed Patch Mountain Trail was also completed through extensive local and regional partnerships.

Formerly slated for residential development, the land was purchased out of bankruptcy in 2009 by local land trust, Conserving Carolina (then Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy) for the purpose of conservation.

Conserving Carolina then forever protected all of its 1,500+ acres in partnership with the Clean Water Management Trust Fund via a conservation easement in 2011. This protection ensures that its forest, waters, soils, and serene landscape are forever safeguarded from negative impacts such as development, logging, mining, and erosion & sedimentation.

The Town of Lake Lure partnered with Conserving Carolina and the North Carolina Parks and Recreation Trust Fund (PARTF) in 2012 to purchase an initial 200 acres of the protected land on Weed Patch Mountain. With funding from PARTF and the Recreational Trails Program, a 3.5 mile Loop Trail for mountain biking and hiking was completed in 2013. An initial 0.7 miles of the Weed Patch Mountain Trail was also completed. An additional 8 miles of trail was then constructed.  In 2020, the Town of Lake lure took over management of the Weed Patch Mountain Trail.