White Rock Trail

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White Rock Trail overlook.JPG
Trail Name White Rock Trail
Nearest City Johnson City
State Tennessee
Trail Marking White
Trail Use/Features Dnr hiking.png Dnr dog.png
Difficulty Rating Medium
Hiking Time 1.5 Hours
Distance, round-trip 1.85 Miles
Elevation Gain 1070 Feet
High Point 3250 Feet
Latitude 36°16′43.1″N
Longitude 82°20′46.0″W
Nearest Medical Johnson City, TN
Trip Reports Click Here
Show Large Map


Trail Overview

Located in Buffalo Mountain Park, a popular trail to the cliffs overlooking the I-26 valley.

How to get there

Refer to the “How to get there” instructions on the Buffalo Mountain Park page. Take the gravel road left to the alternative parking area.

Route Description

The white-blazed White Rock Trail heads up the eastern edge of the park to the cliffs overlooking I-26 and then beyond the communication towers. Starting from the alt. parking lot, head into the forest and cross a wooden beam acting as a short bridge. At the junction with the main loop trail, turn left/east to recross the stream. A single white blaze then shows the climb up the tree roots to find a narrow trail. After 0.2 mile, a blue blazed spur trail heads over to the gravel service road. Continue heading uphill reaching the power line clearing. The blue-blazed Tower Ridge Trail heads off to the right. Proceed down a steep bank to cross the gravel service road. Follow the trail back into the forest. At an older trail sign, a red-blazed trail heads back downhill to the service road, while the main trail continues ahead north and an informal trail comes in from the right. The trail works around to the park boundary and then turns to follow the edge of the ridgeline. It descends on a rock outcropping, which is inadequately blazed from the other direction thus folks have created the previously mentioned informal spur trail by proceeding downhill.

White Rock Trail continues uphill with rock outcroppings to the east for views. As it approaches the commication towers area, the trail stays in the woods to stay off the service road. Just beyond the last tower, a junction with Tower Ridge Trail is reached. The trail path appears to split into two parallel lanes continuing over to a fixed wooden bench - and junction with Fork Ridge Trail.

A roughly three mile loop hike can be done in couple of hours (plus stops) by hiking up the Tower Ridge Trail or gravel service road and returning by the White Rock Trail. The latter offers views to the east of the I-26 valley.

Typical Conditions

While heavily used, the trail appears to have no formal maintenance. During rain, water will channel down the steep path, thus subsequently resulting in a slippery mud slide. In a couple of places, there are small springs which continually flow down the trail, thus could benefit from rock channeling or water bars.

Misc. Information

Maps

White Rock Trail is the black line, while Tower Ridge Trail is in blue line.
Note: The route for Highridge Road is incorrect as the service road is closed with a gate.

Photos