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Public access and the Buffalo River Trail expanded at Buffalo National River 

Courtesy of the Buffalo National River Partners.

Pictured: Members of the Ozark Society, Searcy County Chamber of Commerce, Ozark Highland Trail Association, and Buffalo National River Staff gathered for a ribbon cutting at the Grinders Ferry Buffalo River Trailhead on April 25, 2022.

The National Park Service (NPS) has purchased a 64 acre tract of land within the legislated boundaries of Buffalo National River, making it possible for all people to access this tract of land within the park.

This formerly private inholding was an important key to completing a segment of the Buffalo River Trail/Ozark Highland Trail. Located on the south side of the Buffalo River in Searcy County, between Rocky Creek and the South Maumee River Access, this property offers great views of the river and 64 more acres for visitors to explore, birdwatch, backcountry camp, and hunt.

Visitors can now hike on the maintained trail all the way from Richland Creek to Dillards Ferry. 

“We are very excited about this new access for the public along the Buffalo River. What better way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of America’s first national river, than to open more areas for visitors to enjoy. I would like to thank the Buffalo River Foundation for their dedicated work to get this property included in the park. The volunteers from the Ozark Society and the Ozark Highland Trail Association have also been great partners in building and maintaining the Buffalo River Trail/Ozark Highland Trail in this area,” said Buffalo National River Superintendent Mark Foust. 

The NPS used Land and Water Conservation Funds to purchase the property from the Buffalo River Foundation. The Buffalo River Foundation is a non-profit land trust whose mission is “to conserve for public benefit the natural, recreational, scenic, historical and productive values of the Buffalo National River.” 

Please visit the park’s website at www.nps.gov/buff/planyourvisit/hiking-trails to find out more about trails in the park. The Buffalo River Trail currently runs through the park from the Boxley Valley to Pruitt and from Woolum to Dillards Ferry.

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