The Goat Trail is a narrow 3-4 foot wide ledge which runs on the edge of Big Bluff. At 550 ft. tall, Big Bluff is the tallest bluff along the Buffalo River. Big Bluff and the Goat Trail overlook the Buffalo River Valley are the destinations of a spin-off trail accessed from Centerpoint trail which is located in Ponca, AR.
It must first be said that the Goat Trail is to be taken very seriously. It is NOT FOR CHILDREN, inexperienced hikers, people who experience vertigo or a fear of heights, roughhousing or goofing around, drinking, or night hiking. This trail is NOT forgiving. One misstep could cost you your life and a number of people have in fact fallen and died from here. Most of these deaths are alcohol and night hiking related, but anyone could trip or become unbalanced here. BE CAUTIOUS, BE SLOW, AND BE MINDFUL OF EACH STEP ALONG THE WAY.
With all of THAT said, the the Goat Trail is amazing. If you respect it for what it is and hike it cautiously, it is something you will never forget! It is one helluva thrill and the view from there is one of a kind! It is probably one of the scariest but coolest things I’ve ever done and I officially have some hiking bragging rights under my belt!
From Ponca, drive 3 miles north on Hwy 43 to the Centerpoint Trailhead, located at the Firetower Road junction. Park in the parking lot at the trailhead.
-Centerpoint Trail Difficulty: Moderate
-Goat Trail Difficulty: Difficult. Experienced Hikers Only!
-Trail length to the start of Big Bluff trailhead from Centerpoint Trail: 2.7 miles
-Trail length from Big Bluff Trailhead off of Centerpoint to the Goat Trail: 1/4 mile
Read photo descriptions below for more info!
Centerpoint is actually a starting trailhead for the Hemmed-In-Hollow Trail which if you include the trail to Big Bluff is a total of 5.4 miles (10.8 miles roundtrip) and takes you to the tallest waterfall between the Rocky Mountains and the Appalacians! We did not complete the entire trail. Instead, we hiked the 2.7 miles to the Big Bluff trailhead and then another 1/4 mile to The Goat Trail. We came back the same way we came in which totaled almost a 6 mile hike-about 3 hours or so.