The ranches are currently used as a private horse breeding and training operation. However, the properties are also suitable for several agricultural, recreational and income-producing activities.
Approximately 200 irrigated acres on the three ranches are used for raising high-quality grass hay. In 2008, 550 tons of hay was produced in two cuttings. Hay sales averaged just over $200 a ton, making hay production a significant economic return.
Contract haying services are available if needed.
Wine grape production
The Rogue River Valley, as well as the entire Western portion of the State of Oregon, has become an increasingly important vineyard region in the country, producing award winning wines that have gained national acceptance.
In 2008, the ranches were evaluated by Gregory V. Jones, PH.D. for suitability for growing wine grapes. Mr. Jones’ summary concluded:
“Overall, I think the site in question is very viable for wine grape production and should produce high quality fruit and wine. The relative openness of the landscape, moderately good air drainage, available water for irrigation, and the mesoclimate structure of the area should produce the conditions needed to optimally ripen most intermediate to warm climate varieties grown in the region.”
Mr. Jones identified 180 acres of the property as suitable for wine grape production and further identifies a number of varieties that would be best suited for the site. He further points out, “The structure of the property and its current use provide for very easy development with N-S row orientations of 600-1200 ft. that is conducive to optimum management.”
For a full copy of Mr. Jones’ report, interested parties should
contact Tom Harrison with Oregon Opportunities, listed below.
Additional irrigated acreage, crop potential:
The owners have recently acquired water rights for an additional approximately 22 acres on the Triple Springs Ranch, between the two irrigation canals. These acres provide an "enhanced suitability" for wine grapes, due to slope gradient and orientation. In addition, they should be highly suitable for a variety of organic crop production, due to not having been previously farmed, fertilized or treated with non-qualifying agents. There is strong regional demand for organic produce of every kind.
The property has in the past been used for cattle grazing under lease following the second hay harvest until approximately the end of October, to maximize productive use.
Although not originally developed for commercial uses, the size and amenities of the equestrian facilities have made it in demand for horse boarding, training and renting for equestrian events. Horse boarding rates in the area for similar facilities are in the $300-$350.00 range per stall.
Horse capacity at the Triple S includes:
-26 12'x14' stalls with 16'x30' paddocks
-2 20'x20' foaling/lay up stalls with 20'x30' paddocks
-Run-in shelter corrals for 6-8 horses
-16+ pipe stalls with removable poly roofs, around the 60' round pen
-Prepared pad next to vet barn is immediately available to expand barn
space - up to 12 additional stalls depending on configuration, or may be used for
breeding and stallion facilities.
-Finally, many cross-fenced fields with piped water for troughs may
be utilized for groups of horses turned out full time.
Pipe panel stalls with removable poly roofing are in a complex across the driveway from the main facility. These units enable use in the summers by guests for clinics, shows and similar events. Another productive use of the equine facilities that has received inquiry is lease of the vet building by a veterinarian as home base for an essentially mobile practice.
The home on the Antelope Creek Ranch property has a rental value of $1,200 per month, and is a desirable rental, with a separate gated entrance. The 3/2 mobile home on the Triple Springs property should have a rental value of $600-700 a month, or can be used as partial compensation for a farm worker.
The Properties abound with wildlife for pleasure viewing or hunting. Owner tags are available for the migratory herd of elk that often visits the pastures. The pond has sizeable bass, and is visited by ducks and geese. Wild turkey are abundant. Also present are deer, cougar, bear, bobcat and coyote.
Costs (all three ranches).
Some annual fixed costs of operation of the Ranches include:
Irrigation District fees - approximately $7500 in 2008.
Property taxes - $18,850 in 07-08.
Fertilizer - $7,300
Other costs are highly variable depending on how the property is managed and used.
Currently, two full time employees manage the ranches, including all routine buildings, grounds and equipment upkeep, stall cleaning, all aspects of hay crop production, irrigation and ditch maintenance, and some horse care. If horse occupancy is maximized, additional help might be needed.