Buffalo Mountain: A New, Spectacular Hike

Susan takes a photo of the view from one of the big rocks on top.

I’m shooting a reflection in a rock pool.

Susan lifted this rock, so I could walk under it.

My friend Susan and I took our cameras up Buffalo Mountain in Floyd County yesterday and not only got some pretty good photos, but also experienced a new hike (for us) that is reminiscent of North Mountain, McAfee’s Knob, Dragon’s Tooth (without the difficulty) and several other big payoff hikes in this region.

My doc, Jeri Lentz, suggested Buffalo Mountain, one of her favorite trails and when I looked it up, the trail looked perfect: two miles up an incline and a simply dazzling view (almost 360 degrees) at the top. There are no creeks or water falls on the trail, but the view stands alone and in about three weeks or so, my guess is that the color of the foliage will be spectacular. The mountain is nearly 4,000 feet up, but the train grade is slight most of the way and rarely steep. Even on top, when walking the rocks, it isn’t difficult to climb here and there.

Susan and I ran into quite a few pleasant people, but were fascinated with a group of geology students and their professors from the University of Cincinnati. One of them was a young Vietnamese student (one who already had a degree in petroleum engineering in Vietnam) who was studying here with the goal of a master’s degree. She barely speaks English and our admiration for her courage was significant.

Included here are our impressions of the hike.

This is a family that was just ahead of us on the trail.

I’m at the right here, crashing the geology class.

This was our welcome to the area.

The parking lot is roomy, but not huge (that’s my white truck).

We found a bunch of fascinating–and big–spider webs to shoot.

I shot some webs, too.

This is a pretty shot from Susan.

Another spider web, making art is it grows.

The pause that refreshes.

Some creative soul carved out this chair with a chain saw.

Susan, who teaches chair yoga, shows how it’s done in a natural setting.

That’s Rock Man standing on top of the world.

Here’s Rock Man climbing down.

There was lots of vegetation, little of it prettier than this.

It took about 10 minutes for me to finally get a shot of this colorful boy.

This maple sapling says–screams–“fall!”

Heavy overcast and mist gave an impression–alternately–of romance and foreboding.

This is the geology class on its field trip, which I suggested is preferable to an English major’s field trip: the library.

Back in the days when I climbed Dragon’s Tooth, I often took photos that looked like this …

… or this.

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