Backpacking Trip Report: Pruitt to Kyles Landing

Area: Buffalo River

State: Arkansas

Mileage: 17

Days: 3

Type: In and Out

We did this trip over Labor Day weekend. We started at Pruitt campground and headed back up river on the BRT (Buffalo River Trail) which is the trail that goes up and away from the river and is also limited to hikers only. There is a trail that stays on the river called the ORT (Old River Trail) that is for hikers and horses.As we started out we ascended a graudual climb up to an overlook. From there the trail passes several old homesteads and then winds up at Ozark campground. That leg of the trail is 2.6 miles. This is a great place to swim and relax. From there we headed on up river towards Erbie. We stopped about a mile short of Erbie to camp for the night. That was about 5 miles form Ozark and we dropped down onto the ORT to get to the river and filter some water.

There’s a great place to camp on down on the river here. It’s a gravel bar that has places where there are sand. We had to shrink the River’s snake population here by three so be careful when camping down on the river. There are some great holes here for fishing and swimming and just a great place to relax.

The next morning we set out for another day of hiking. We passed through Erbie and on to some of the coolest parts of the trail I’ve ever been on. There are several historical sites on this section of the trail. There’s the Parker-Hickman farm and an old cemetery just up the road from there with some stones that date back to 1796. From there we hiked along a ridge overlooking the river and saw some really great stuff. This is a pretty long span away from the river so if you go it make sure you take plenty of water. At this point we dropped back down to the river for some swimming and some lunch.

After lunch we decided to make it over to Camp Orr Boy Scout Camp to go through a cave there called Copper Head Cave. We got the cave and had to help get a guy out of the cave that couldn’t climb back out. This cave is a drop in and then goes for a nearly a mile. After getting the guy out of the cave we decided to head back down to the river set up camp. We ended up camping about .6 of a mile from our final destination on a gravel bar at Buzzard Bluff. It was awesome. The bluff walls here are over 300 feet tall and truly amazing. The swimming there is awesome too.

After a good night we headed the last .6 of a mile to Kyle’s landing and then over to the cave for the day. We were originally planning on making this a three day but ended up doing all but the last .6 of a mile in 2 days. We decided to stop there because of how awesome it was.

This was a great hike. I would highly recommend it! Be sure to check out the pictures.

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