Hike Buffalo Mountain

2 miles 700 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Elyse Clark

Nestled away in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Floyd, VA is the Buffalo Mountain Natural Area Preserve. The unique summit of Buffalo Mountain is naturally treeless and offers 360 degree views of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, and also hosts many rare plants and animals.

COVID-19 CLOSURE: Due to Covid-19, this trail will be closed effective April 10, 2020 at 8 PM until June 24, 2020. 

A short 1.0 mile hike to the summit with 700’ elevation gain, the trail switchbacks steeply up to the exposed rocky summit. To the north you can see Sharp Top and Flat Top at the Peaks of Otter, and to the south you can see Pilot Mountain in North Carolina.

The summit has many places to spread out and is a great place for a picnic. Once done exploring simply retrace your steps back down the trail to your car. On your way out, continue onto the Blue Ridge Parkway for more beautiful views of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, or stop by Chateau Morrisette Winery for a delicious meal or wine tasting.

Getting there: From downtown Floyd take US-221 south for about 6 miles, then directions to the preserve are clearly marked from there. The last road to get to the preserve is a gravel road that is quite bumpy in some places and may require high-clearance vehicles. Access to the preserve is free.

Read More


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly


Leave a Review

Overall rating: 


over 1 year ago

Great view and easy climb

Great spot for a sunset! The trail back down is easy to navigate even in the dark. You’ll want a car with some clearance, but I drove up here in a Volvo 960 with no issues.


over 2 years ago

Gorgeous, but ...

This is an absolutely GORGEOUS hike with 360 views, but with that said the driveway in nearly gave me a panic attack and I will never go there again for that reason. It is barely wide enough for 2 vehicles, it's gravel and terribly bumpy, and it is on the side of a cliff so it would be possible to tip off of it ... It might not seem as terrible if you go at a time of day with low traffic, but we had to pull as far over as we could to let cars go by many times and it was clearly nerve-wracking to me.

over 2 years ago


I hiked this last year during the summer and it was great, a very short hike! Breathtaking views at the top - we went right before a storm hit and the clouds were so close and low! it was stunning! go try this hike, when you get the the top it’s like the air conditioner turns on!


Great short hike with beautiful views. Choose your level of difficulty, take the left for a moderate hike or take the more difficult path to the right.

over 3 years ago

Drive By

Alone in the woods. Saw my first chipmunk!

Stay Nearby

Floyd, Virginia

Rocky Knob Campground

Overview Located on the famous Blue Ridge Parkway in the hills of rural Virginia, Rocky Knob Campground is nestled amid rolling meadowlands with impressive displays of seasonal flowers, endless nig...

Henry, Virginia

Horseshoe Point

Overview Horseshoe Point Campground is nestled on the shores of Philpott Lake in the rugged foothills of Virgina's Blue Ridge Mountains. The park is located in a rural and sparsely populated part o...

4780 Goose Point Road

Goose Point

Overview Goose Point Campground is nestled on the shores of Philpott Lake in the rugged foothills of Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains. The clear water and natural shoreline make Philpott Lake a uniq...

Nearby Adventures

  • Photograph Mabry Mill

    Mabry Mill is one of the most photographed spots on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and rightfully so. Located at MP 176.1 the mill is beautiful in any season and easily accessed from the parking lot. Since this place is so popular, be prepared for crowds...

  • Hike Rock Castle Gorge

    This 10.8 mile loop is a very demanding, but very rewarding hike that will take most of the day to complete. The hike can be started from many different locations but in this write-up it starts at the Saddle Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway and ...

  • Camp at Claytor Lake State Park

    Claytor Lake is a very well maintained state park in Dublin, VA. There are four campgrounds available. Campgrounds A, B and C are mostly for tent camping with no electric or water hookups, while campground D accommodates RV units with water and el...

  • Bike the New River Trail

    There are several locations to begin your trek on the New River Trail, but our favorite is the Draper Valley area. The pin on the map will take you right to the parking lot. There is a $5 state park fee and a self-pay envelope station. From here w...

    57 miles