Buffalo River Overview

This section contains an overview for visitors of the 150 mile long Buffalo National River. It is
organized by river area. It includes links to attractions, local guides, weather information, river levels,
as well as driving time information.  The BNR was recently voted by AOL travel as one of the 10 least
known national parks that everyone must visit. Designated as America's first National River 1972, it
an affordable destination that everyone should visit.  See the Buffalo River Map, it will open in a
separate window.

This section is an overview. It is supplemented by more in-depth resources such as the maps, hiking
trails, and campground sections. Be sure to visit the maps page and the links page when doing your
planning.


Upper Buffalo River Area

The Upper Buffalo River area contains many of the most famous attractions in the entire Buffalo
National River. It is home to two wilderness areas, the Ponca Wilderness, and the Upper Buffalo
Wilderness. The area is a hikers, floaters, naturalists, and horseman paradise.

From the source of the Buffalo National River to the Boxley Bridge, the very upper area of the river is
called "Hailstone". It is revered by expert kayakers and canoeists as one of the most challenging
floats in the US.

Visitors to the area will want to visit the Ponca Elk Education Center (870 861-2432) run by the
Arkansas Game and Fish. Boxley Valley is the best single place to view the famous Arkansas elk
herd. Lost Valley Campground hiking trail is by far the most popular trail in the upper Buffalo River
area.

Middle River Area

The Middle River area of Buffalo National River is placid compared to the upper river area. The
Buffalo River transforms from a wild seasonal river to a year round river, much wider and deeper,
and floatable 12 months a year.

Tyler Bend Visitor Center is located in the middle river area. It is a great facility offering hiking,
camping, swimming and other outdoor activities. The facility includes a number of exhibits of related
to archeology, history, biology, and other aspects of the park. It includes a bookstore.  Educational
programs are conducted by the interpretation staff.


The Lower River Area

As the Buffalo River winds to its confluence with the White River, it becomes still wider, it is a very
different river than the upper river area. The lower area offers great fishing for small mouth bass and
trout that migrate upstream from the White River. In this area of the river, johnboats with motors are
the primary water craft, although many canoeists float this area as well.

The Buffalo National River is considered a Blue Ribbon Smallmouth Stream. This coveted national
designation signifies its outstanding fishery.

The primary attraction of the Lower River is Buffalo Point. Buffalo Point was build by the CCC and
was originally an Arkansas State Park. At Buffalo Point vacationers can rent cabins as well as camp.
The campground features outstanding vistas high above the river. Like Lost Valley Campground in
the Upper River Area, Buffalo Point is also a very popular destination for hikers. The most famous
trail is the Indian Rock House trail, but there are many others. There are also many interpretive
programs run out of Buffalo Point.

Buffalo River Overview
online
Overview, River Levels, Weather, & Driving Times,  etc.



Upper Buffalo River

Current Ponca Conditions






Historical Data (enter Ponca,
AR)

Buffalo River Level at Boxley
Buffalo River Level at Ponca
Buffalo River Level at Pruitt


Middle Buffalo River

Current Gilbert Conditions








Historical Data (enter Gilbert,
AR)

Buffalo River Level at St. Joe



Lower Buffalo River

Current Harriet Conditions








Historical Data (enter Harriet,
AR)

Buffalo River Level at Harriet

Click for Ponca, Arkansas Forecast
Click for Gilbert, Arkansas Forecast
Click for Harriet, Arkansas Forecast
Towns From West to East Eureka Springs Ponca (BR) Harrison Jasper Marshall Cotter (WR) Gilbert (BR) Buffalo City (BR)(WR) Mountain
View
Eureka Springs Eureka Springs 54.4 miles
1 hr 27 min
41.5 miles
55 minutes
62 miles
1 hr 30 min
84.4 miles
1 hr 46 min
82.5 miles
1 hr 46 min
75.miles
1 hr 41 min
96.2 miles
2 hr 15 min
123 miles
3 hours
Ponca (BR) 54.4 miles
1 hr 27 min
Ponca 36.6
1 hr 4 min
15 miles
32 min
60 miles
1 hr 41 min
69 miles
1 hr 49 min
51.3 miles
1 hr 35 min
83.1 miles
2 hrs 21 min
99.2 miles
2 hrs 54 min
Harrison 41.5 miles
55 minutes
36.6
1 hr 4 min
Harrison 20.6 miles
35 mins
43.1 miles
53 mins
41.2 miles
53 mins
33.8 miles
47 mins
54.9 miles
1 hr 26 min
81.7 miles
2 hrs 6 min
Jasper 62 miles
1 hr 30 min
15 miles
32 min
20.6 miles
35 mins
Jasper 46.1 miles
1 hr 9 mins
55.2 miles
1 hr 18 min
36.8 miles
1 hr 4 min
68.9 miles
1hr 51 mins
84.7 miles
2 hrs 22 min
Marshall 84.4 miles
1 hr 46 min
60 miles
1 hr 41 min
43.1 miles
53 mins
46.1 miles
1 hr 9 mins
Marshall 51.7 miles
1 hr 19 min
15.6 miles
22 min
65.4 miles
1 hr 51 min
38.6 miles
1 hr 13 min
Cotter 82.5 miles
1 hr 46 min
69 miles
1 hr 49 min
41.2 miles
53 mins
55.2 miles
1 hr 18 min
51.7 miles
1 hr 19 min
Cotter 32.8 miles
1 hr 8 min
14 miles
34 min
58.3 miles
1 hr 52 min
Gilbert (BR) 75.miles
1 hr 41 min
51.3 miles
1 hr 35 min
33.8 miles
47 mins
36.8 miles
1 hr 4 min
15.6 miles
22 min
32.8 miles
1 hr 8 min
Gilbert 46.5 miles
1 hr 40 min
54.2 miles
1 hr 35 min
Buffalo City (BR) 96.2 miles
2 hr 15 min
83.1 miles
2 hrs 21 min
54.9 miles
1 hr 26 min
68.9 miles
1hr 51 mins
65.4 miles
1 hr 51 min
14 miles
34 min
46.5 miles
1 hr 40 min
Buffalo
City
52.5 miles
2 hrs
Mountain View 123 miles
3 hrs
99.2 miles
2 hrs 54 min
81.7 miles
2 hrs 6 min
84.7 miles
2 hrs 22 min
38.6 miles
1 hr 13 min
58.3 miles
1 hr 52 min
54.2 miles
1 hr 35 min
52.5 miles
2 hrs
Mountain
View
Driving Distances and Times

In the Buffalo National River area, driving times and distances often don't line up very well. Visitors accustomed to quick trips are surprised at
how long it takes to venture from one area to another. Winding roads through the mountains add a lot of time to trips.  The guide below
identifies how long it takes to get to various points both on and off the river. These times and distances are calculated with online mapping
tools.

Note that some town names are followed by a (BR) or in a couple of cases (WR). Towns with these designations are "river towns", directly on
either the Buffalo River (BR) or the White River (WR). Some of the towns are popular tourist destinations like Jasper, Eureka Springs, and
Mountain View even though they are not on the river. Visitors often take day trips to these destinations to shop and eat. This guide should
assist in figuring out the best place for you to stay when you visit, depending on your itinerary.