Location: Grass Valley, California
Quail Ranch is a truly remarkable Sierra foothills ranch that is just minutes from the historic Gold Rush towns of Auburn, Grass Valley and Nevada City. The 1060-acre ranch features a lovely three-bedroom, four and a half-bath home that looks out over a large private lake. A combination of irrigated pastureland and rich native California landscape with oaks, grassland, springs, and creeks provide the opportunity to own a wildlife preserve, family retreat, and working ranch.
A ranch manager/guest house with three bedrooms and two baths is located a short distance from the main house but allows plenty of privacy for the main house. There are two rental houses and several barns and outbuildings along with other livestock infrastructure such as fencing, corrals, stock ponds, and more.
The ranch has been thoughtfully protected from major development with a conservation easement that preserves the natural beauty of the land in perpetuity while allowing the addition of six more dwellings, a hay barn, and modifications to existing structures.
Quail Ranch has been used primarily for a recreational retreat, including wildlife viewing, quail hunting and livestock grazing. The 1061-acre ranch consists of approximately 910 acres of native land, 140 acres of irrigated pastureland, and 11 acres that are divided into three separate areas where residential and farm structures are located. The grazing is currently leased out to a local cattle, goat, and sheep operator.
The quintessential Sierra foothills landscape offers wide-open meadows, rolling hills, beautiful oak trees, and natural springs and creeks, offering the owners a complete wildlife experience. Classic stone walls and fences built from rocks on the ranch provide a glimpse into the old homesteads that once inhabited the ranch. The elevation on the ranch ranges from approximately 1,000 to 1,300 feet above sea level with expansive views from the snowcapped Sierras to the Sacramento Valley. A large spring-fed lake with boat dock is adjacent to the main home offering a tranquil setting for the ever-present waterfowl visitor.
Livestock is managed by a combination of barbwire perimeter and cross fencing along with irrigated pastures. Livestock water is provided by natural water springs, Nevada Irrigation District canals, and earthen stock water ponds. There are roads throughout the ranch that provide access for hiking, horseback riding, biking, and ATVs. The main house and ranch manager’s house are accessed by a private gated gravel road, while the barns, rental houses and outbuildings are located along the paved entrance to the ranch.
The ranch is located in Nevada County between the historic Gold Rush towns of Auburn and Grass Valley/Nevada City. It is just under an hour to Sacramento along Highway 49 and under two hours from Lake Tahoe. Auburn, Grass Valley and Nevada City offer year-round activities and gourmet restaurants, wineries, micro-breweries and a number of popular seasonal festivals. Along with major grocery store chains, the towns have plenty of unique antique shops and art galleries. Sacramento offers international air service.
Ranch Owner’s Home
Designed by Daniel Volkmann of Bull Volkmann Stockwell, and built in 1986, the beautiful three-bedroom, four and half bath redwood sided home with vaulted ceilings, stone fireplace, and wonderful views over the adjoining lake offers great ranch-style living.
The home’s custom layout affords privacy for family members and guests by separating two of the three bedrooms from the main living area.
The main living structure with its attractive entryway, includes a large open beam living and dining rooms, kitchen, master bedroom, master bathroom, and a half bath, plus a large mud/utility room. Large windows look out on the private lake and truly capitalize on the surrounding beauty.
A combination of large paver tiles and oak floors are throughout the house adding to the ranch feel. A large deck and outdoor paver patios add additional space for enjoying dinning and entertaining outside and outdoor life on the ranch. Heating is by electric baseboard heaters and wood stoves. Air conditioning is provided by individual window units. The attractive rock-face fireplace provides winter warmth and ambiance as well.
A common roofline and short breezeway connect the main living area to the home’s bedroom wing which includes two bedrooms, each with their own bathroom and charming wood-burning stove. There is a quaint sleeping porch as well as a studio/office space that might be used as a game room.
The garage/shop structure is also connected to the main living area by a common roof and breezeway.
The home’s garden with its well-constructed and attractive stone retaining walls, some remnants of an old homestead, lovely arbor, courtyard, fountain and more provide an ideal place for outdoor entertaining.
Ranch Manager/Guest House
The ranch includes a second modern and well-constructed redwood sided ranch-style home built in 1985 with an open beam ceiling in the living room with a wood stove, dining room, kitchen, three bedrooms, and two bathrooms. It includes a covered porch area and an attached garage. The home is currently occupied by the cattleman who is leasing pastureland for his cattle.
The following ranching improvements and rental houses are located over a half mile away from the main house and Ranch Manager/Guest House. All of these structure have direct access from Garden Bar Road.
Two rental homes are located on an approximately six-acre portion of the property. They are both older ranch-style structures measuring approximately 1,303 and 846 square feet respectively. The homes were likely constructed in the 1950s and are currently occupied with long-term tenants.
A 1,200 square-foot steel-framed shop is in the same area as the rental homes. It has a clear span interior with approximately 12 feet of eve height. There is a double sliding door (approximately 10′ wide) as well as a walk-through door.
Old Milk Barn/Storage Shed
This structure (831 SF) is an old milking parlor that is currently being used for miscellaneous storage purposes. It is constructed with concrete blocks on a concrete slab foundation.
A livestock scale (manufactured by L.R. Murphy Co.) with a 49,000-pound capacity and a 10 by 22-foot platform is located near the old milk barn.
Grain Storage Tank
A vertical galvanized grain storage tank measuring 10 feet in diameter and 16 feet tall sits on a concrete slab that is located near the old milk barn.
Livestock and Storage Barns
Two large livestock and storage barns are located near one of the rental homes. They measure approximately 6,958 and 4,800 square feet respectively and are built on raised concrete foundations.
A livestock shed measuring 600 square feet is located near the smaller livestock and storage barn. It is on a raised concrete foundation with wood frame and siding, and a galvanized iron roof.
Multiple wood and steel pipe corrals are located near the rental units and barns as well.
Domestic Water and Other Utilities
Wells with pressure pumping systems provide domestic water to all dwellings and other areas. The property is served by all necessary public rural services, including paved roads, electricity, telephone, mail service, and fire and police protection. A 10-kilowatt photovoltaic solar system provides power to the home as well. Internet is provided by satellite dish.
Water and Irrigation
Nevada Irrigation District (NID) delivers irrigation water to the property via the Sanford-Struckman canal. NID water allocation to this property is 80 miner’s inches per season (April 15 through October 15). According to NID personnel, a rule of thumb for effective water supply is ½ miner’s inch for approximately one acre of irrigated pasture. Based on this rule of thumb, the 80 miner’s inches allocation to this property is adequate for approximately 160 irrigated acres of irrigated pasture (80 miner’s inches -:- ½ miner’s inch per irrigated acre = 160 irrigated acres). Irrigation water is applied to the land by “wild” flooding. Drainage of irrigation water and winter rainfall is by soil percolation and by natural drainage waterways.
The land has been used primarily for livestock grazing purposes for many years. This use is similar to other properties in the area. Average annual carrying capacity is estimated at approximately 130 cow and calf pairs on a twelve-month basis. This equates to an overall average for the 1,050 acres (native and irrigated pasture) of approximately 8.1 acres per pair (1,050 acres -:- 130 pairs = 8.1 acres per pair).
The property is subject to a conservation easement recorded August 21, 1997 in Nevada County Official Records as document number 097022194. The purpose of the easement is to assure that the property will be retained in perpetuity in its natural, scenic, historical, and open space condition and to prevent any use that will significantly impair or interfere with its conservation values. The easement restricts the property to activities involving private recreation, agricultural use, family retreats, nature study, enjoyment of views, open space, natural habitat and environmental protection, and certain residential use and related uses. Although the easement addresses several land use restrictions, the most significant restriction appears to be restriction regarding subdivision of the property. The easement allows several agricultural uses, repair or replacement of existing structures, addition of two additional guest houses (up to 2,000 SF each), four separate caretakers/farmworker’s quarters (up to 1,000 SF each), and one additional hay barn outside the “agricultural center.” The easement restricts future subdivision of the property into smaller parcels. This easement requirement is considered a restriction to a property developer who may wish to consider future development of the property for smaller acreage rural home sites. However, these restrictions also create attractive and rare privacy for the owner and a haven for wildlife.
Wildlife & Recreation
The beautiful Quail Ranch landscape is largely undeveloped and therefore an excellent habitat for deer, wild turkey, quail and other local wildlife. There are opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting and more. The over two-acre lake is great for swimming, standup paddle boarding, rowing, and fishing.
Quail Ranch has it all! The combination of over 1,000 acres, a beautiful home with a private lake out the backdoor in a beautiful California ranch setting is a rare find. There are exciting options for continuing with the grazing lease, putting your brand on a herd, and more. The striking beauty of the property with its majestic oaks, rock outcroppings, wildlife, lake and more provide intrinsic value that is easily understood.
NOTICE: Offering is subject to errors, omissions, prior sale, change orwithdrawal without notice, and approval of purchase by owner. Information regarding land classifications,potential profits, etc., are intended only as general guidelines and have beenprovided by sources deemed reliable, but whose accuracy we cannot guarantee.