Although the start and finish of this trail run is on pavement, the Buffalo Run’s course soon shifts to the sandy soil of a fire line that protects the surrounding mixed hardwood and pine forest from wildfires. The path continues to Camp Eight Road, a wide gravel road that once led workers to the still and camp of an early 20th century turpentine operation. Some of the pine trees in the hardwood upland on the left side of the road and in the pine flatwoods on the right side (two distinct ecological zones separated by only a few inches of elevation) bear the characteristic scars of being “catfaced” a century ago to collect pine gum.
Rounding the curve of Camp Eight Road, runners will briefly follow Cemetery Road and then head on to the Cemetery Loop Trail. Leaving the gravel road for the sandy trail, racers will see the pine uplands give way to the ancient maritime forest and the edge of the New River marsh. The old dikes and levees of antebellum rice fields stretch off into the distance and ospreys soar overhead. Deer, wild turkeys, and fox squirrels are often seen along this section of the route, which briefly rejoins the gravel Cemetery Road before continuing along another sandy fire line. Here, the old upland hardwood and pine forest leads to a young pine plantation, a reminder of the land’s tenure as a managed property of Union Camp.
The path intersects and continues along Whitehouse Road, a wide, manicured dirt road, and the forest becomes older and a mix of hardwoods and pines. In the early morning, this is a perfect place to spot a buck or doe grazing on the grass at the edge of the woods. After a short distance, runners will leave the dirt road for another sandy fire line, a narrower trail that skirts beautiful wetlands with red maples before looping back to Whitehouse Road. Whitehouse Road continues to the paved road and the leads to the finish/starting line.
Gates open at 6:30AM
Race Starts at 8:00AM
Runners are allowed to set up pop-up canopy tents and tables for the support team in their designated areas. This is a cup free race, there will be water stations on the course but please bring your own hydration bottles.
Buffalo Run shirts to all participants. Buffalo Run camo hats to all 30K and 50K runners and Buffalo head trophy for all 50K runners.. Awards to the overall male and female winners in each race.
Local time: 12:53 AM