The Big Sage Ranch is located 30 miles north of Winnett, MT and 23 miles east of HWY 19 both roads are great county-maintained gravel roads. And about a total of 130 miles to Billings, MT the biggest city in Montana.
This has got to be one of the “best bang for your buck” elk hunting ranches for sale in Montana. In our pictures you will see bulls killed this year during the September hunting season, and other pictures taken though out the summer of ’21. The elk love this ranch, there is a resident elk herd that can reach up to 1,500 head. The two ponds on the deeded each have a very nice blind built on them and the elk are used to the blinds being as the blinds have been built for years.
The hunting district is area 410, known for the big bulls and a little tougher to draw rifle permit but not hard for bow permits. The new owner could put in for the landowner preference license draw and improve your chances of drawing.
There is also very good mule deer hunting along with upland game birds and as an added bonus you have prairie dog shooting. The state section is 640 acres of which the dog town is about 600 acres and the state will do nothing to control the population of prairie dogs which means the dogs have of course, moved on to the deeded land.
The ranch consists of 1,240 deeded acres, 640 acre State lease, 1,140 AUM’s on 1 grazing association, Crooked Creek for 1,140 AUM’s. You can run by yourself, so no one’s cattle are mixed in with yours and the State lease adds 95 AUM’s for a total of 1,235 AUM’s . The cost is $4.40/ AUM’s on Crooked Creek and the State lease is $1,250.00/yr.
The grazing associations are split into 4 pastures. Of the deeded acreage 500 acres are farmed for dry land hay producing ½ to 1 ton to the acre. Although this year no hay was produced due to the drought in Montana. The owner has been paying the state an extra $500.00 a year to allow him to feed his cattle in the winter on the State lease, as it is only about 200 yards from the headquarters and runs on the west boundary of the deeded land making it very convenient for feeding, winter water and calving. In most years the owner will have enough pasture to run 250 pairs but will have to buy supplement hay. Depending on your pasture grazing, this is 2 tons of hay per cow for the winter.
Water is excellent on the ranch.
The grazing association is supplied by an 8 tank pipeline that has a well that runs to a 20,000 gallon buried cistern on a high point and then gravity flows to the 8 tanks. The well is 2,000 feet deep pumping at least 12 gpm and has an artesian flow of 1.5 gpm. The ranch also has another artesian well that is also 2,000 feet deep and artesian flows 3 gpm, and pumps 8 – 12 gpm into an 8,000-gallon cistern that supplies water to the headquarters, corrals and 1 tank, there is also a spot set up for an additional tank and more pipeline could be added on this well. Additional water is with 12 reservoirs on the grazing association and 3 ponds on the deeded acres. All have water right abstracts filed for stock or irrigation use.
The home is a very comfortable older home built in 1979 with a concrete basement, 1,696 square feet and the main floor of 1,927 square feet, 3 bedrooms, 3 baths in very good condition. The house has a reverse osmosis water filtering system. A 48 feet x 118 feet Quonset hut building with cement floors built in 1978, there is wind damage to the 3 doors. A 64 x 40 barn that is only 5 years old, a 24 x 70 3-sided metal pole barn built in 1969.
There is FIBER OPTICS at the house and the school bus comes to the mailbox for children to go to school in Winnett.
An interesting thought that could make this an easy and economically efficient way one could run the ranch is to sell off the grazing associations as the well is on a 32 acre parcel that has a separate deed and would not hurt the ranch in any way. This would leave the new owner 1,200 acres that could be leased out to run a minimal number of cows just to keep the grass mowed down to prevent wildfires. We think the two grazing permits and the 32 acres deeded would be worth in the neighborhood of 1 million dollars.
By the way public access is very limited especially to the north thru the grazing associations as a lot of this country is accessible by horse only. Although with some bulldozer work, one could have some crazy good atv, utv or motorcycle riding.
This ranch truly offers the hunting and recreation of a $10 – $15 million dollar ranch along with running a small herd of cows giving you an all-around ranch. Priced to sell in the hottest market we have ever seen in Montana.