North Fork of the Buffalo

The gorge surrounding the North Fork of the Buffalo has been on my mind as a paddling destination for years.  While we have spent a lot of time in this area of the VA Blue Ridge creek boating, we have yet to link it in.

IMG_3568With our hometown trails sopping wet and in need of a break from their daily deluge, we decided to head for higher grounds to explore the possibilities at the North Fork of the Buffalo.  Luckily, there is an old logging road alongside the creek that beckoned to be biked in addition to the scouting mission.

The North Fork of the Buffalo recreational area is very scenic with it’s pristine waters cascading down from the rim of the gorge.  Come to find out, this area has been dedicated by the Department of Environmental Quality as ‘Exceptional Waters‘ meaning it “satisfied all three of the eligibility criteria to be considered for designation as Exceptional Waters”

1.) environmental setting
2.) recreational opportunities    3.) aquatic communities.

As for riding, the double track along side the creek was a steep, steady incline to the top.  There were multiple downed trees as well as many pitches proving too much for this crew.  The hike-a-bike was in full effect.

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There’s a bounty of old logging roads in the area, but with no accurate map to guide us, our ascent finished with a dead end on a saddle at the ridge.  Our original plan was to top Mount Pleasants, but a proper bush whack would have been necessary to reach the peak.  What was unique however, was the feeling of wilderness at the ridge.  The saddle was rugged and remote with no signs of development.  Makes you wonder when the last time someone was up there?

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What goes up, must come down.  We quickly descended back to the car,  completing our day in the woods.  As for returning to the North Fork of the Buffalo with creek boats? It would be just another manky novelty at best, but one that I plan to do.

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