Buffalo Creek Preserve Trail

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Parking Address and Trailhead Location: Near 7911 Malibu Road, Mt Pleasant, NC 28124 MAP


The Buffalo Creek Preserve Trail is located in the town Mount Pleasant, NC in rural Cabarrus County. The trail features a natural surface trail and gravel road overland connector used for walking, hiking, running, and mountain biking. Visitors to Buffalo Creek Preserve Trail will first walk through a restored piedmont oak savanna. You will then walk along farm fields where a local farm is growing hay and grains. The trail then enters a young forest and follows along a bluff above Adams Creek.

Located along Adams Creek and Dutch Buffalo Creek, this 393-acre preserve protects several streams, ponds and wetlands to enhance water quality. Most of the preserve is composed of working agricultural fields and natural forests, as well as wildlife habitat for several nesting birds and wildlife. Catawba Lands Conservancy is working to restore a piedmont oak-savanna at the trailhead. This habitat type, which is home to numerous ground-nesting birds and prairie species, is in decline throughout the piedmont of the Carolinas. CLC is working with the North Carolina Forestry Service, NC Wildlife Resources Commission, and US Fish and Wildlife Service to conduct routine prescribed fires to promote warm-season grasses and create habitat for many bird species including the imperiled Grasshopper Sparrow and Northern Shrike. In September 2012, a prescribed burn was conducted in 70 acres of the preserve in an effort to develop a piedmont oak savannah, an open natural area conducive for the growth of native warm-season grasses. Growth of these grasses and wildflowers will provide an ideal habitat for birds and other wildlife species.

The farmland, over 130-acres, is leased to a local farmer here in Cabarrus County. The farmer has implemented Best Management Practices which supports farming and wildlife.  While enjoying this property, please be respectful of this local farm's hard work to grow hay and grains (corn, soybeans, and wheat) that are used to local feed cattle. 

The trail follows a lovely forest along the banks of Adams Creek ending where the forest and farmland meet a neighborhood subdivision.  The highlight of this section of trail is the view from a high bluff over Adams Creek that looks back towards the town of Mt. Pleasant. Adams Creek is a tributary of Dutch Buffalo Creek.

Other Information

Buffalo Creek Trail is a part of the Butterfly Highway. "The Butterfly Highway is a statewide conservation restoration initiative that aims to restore native pollinator habitats to areas impacted by urbanization, land use change and agriculture across North Carolina. From backyard Pollinator Pitstops to large-scale roadside habitat restoration, the project is creating a network of native flowering plants to support butterflies, bees, birds and other pollen and nectar dependent wildlife." NC Wildlife Federation-Butterfly Highway Website

Trail Manager

Visit the Catawba Lands Conservancy's website for more information or contact:

Catawba Lands Conservancy
4530 Park Road, Suite 420
Charlotte, NC 28209
Phone: 704-342-3330 x209


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The Buffalo Creek Preserve Trail is a natural surface trail that takes visitors through restored oak-savanna, farmland and along Adams Creek. This property is preserved by the Catawba Lands Conservancy.

Quick Facts

Trail Uses Walking / Hiking / Running
Mountain Biking
Location Mount Pleasant (NC)
Difficulty Moderate
Length2.1 miles, One Way
Surface Gravel/Crushed stone
Natural surface
Fees No
PetsPermitted on leash
Motorized vehiclesNot Permitted
ADA CompliantNo
Number of parking spaces10
Hours of operationDawn - Dusk

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