Rio Arriba Ranch
Rio Arriba Ranch is a 195 acre example of passionate natural resource stewardship and intensive pasture management. This ranch is located just east of Weleetka, OK on the north bank of the North Canadian River. With 75 acres of rich bottomland soils, 100 acres of upland meadows and woods, shallow ground water and a 20 acre lake, this ranch has a strong foundation of the natural resources needed to create a supremely productive and beautiful ranch.
Rio Arriba has 250 feet of elevation change from the sheltering ridge along the north boundary down to the southern boundary on the bank of the North Canadian River. The wooded ridge helps to block the cold north winds of winter and the river helps to cool the southern breezes in the summer months. In addition, a sudden 200 foot elevation change from the rim of the ridge down to the lake provides an extraordinary vantage point where one can overlook the ranch and a large portion of the surrounding valley. A small cabin located on the overlook is the ideal spot for spending time just soaking in all the natural beauty of the view.
The 20 acre lake is a natural oxbow lake that runs along the base of the cliff. Water levels in the lake are supported by runoff from the hillside and direct recharge from the river during high flow stages. The lake has all the typical Oklahoma fish species but notably produces abundant numbers of large blue and channel catfish. With the ridge behind it and the natural spacing of large hardwood trees along its southern bank, the lake serves as the idyllic centerpiece of the ranch gracefully located at this topographic transition.
The alluvial soils found in the main pastures of the ranch are primarily of the Oklared and Severn types. These sandy loams can be used for cultivation or pasture. In the case of Rio Arriba, they are used for pasture and are routinely no-till planted with cover crops such as winter peas and clover to enhance cool season grazing, maintain fertility and increase organic carbon levels. There are 12 main pastures that can either be used as part of a ranch wide rotation or subdivided for internal rotation with temporary, spool-mounted electric fence. A convenient access lane through the pastures makes moving through the ranch quick and easy.
Rio Arriba routinely runs more than 200 head of Dorper sheep and Spanish goats. Fortunately, the ranch has an exceptional set of working pens and equipment designed specifically for calmly handling small animals. In addition, there is also a set of working pens for large animals. The fences are in exceptionally good shape and there are plenty of small lots for isolating different age groups, bucks, rams and any animals that might need a little extra attention.
The fertile soils of Rio Arriba are also used for growing top quality vegetables in garden, raised bed and greenhouse settings. The earth sheltered green house is a particularly interesting design with a portion of the structure built beneath ground level and a south facing roof oriented to capture the low angle sunlight of winter. Solar energy is passively absorbed inside the greenhouse by the black fabric floor and the thermal mass of the northern concrete wall. This heat is then slowly released from the wall and floor throughout the day and night to economically keep the greenhouse warm. A climate control system regulates the temperature of the greenhouse by venting hot air on sunny days and providing supplemental heat on overcast days. This system provides the ideal winter setting for sprouting and starting vegetables in preparation for an early spring transplant to the gardens. Because the ranch can produce far more than one family can eat, two climate controlled storage rooms were constructed. Both use CoolBot systems with one unit used for cool storage and the other as cold storage. Ample dry storage is also available for shelf stable produce. Consequently, Rio Arriba is ideally suited for producing and storing high quality vegetables for sale at farmers markets.
In addition to the cold/dry storage facilities, there is a workshop for equipment repairs, shed storage to keep tractors and implements dry, and a large hay barn. Many of the buildings have roof capture systems that store rainfall for use on the farm. The animals are provided shelter from the elements by numerous permanent and mobile sheds located in the pastures. A two bedroom, two bath mobile home serves as the owners quarters. A large front porch and carport has been added to the front of the structure and a closet, living room and mud room were built on to the back. A new screened pavilion is located just to the east of the main house and is ideal for family gatherings. A second mobile home located near the hay barn is occupied by the caretaker.
Lastly, the ranch has both a tap on the rural water system and well water provided by two wells on the ranch. Multiple propane tanks supply the structures plus three whole house generators. Assuming propane is available, these generators are capable of running both homes, storage barn and workshop during the longest of power outages.
Rio Arriba Ranch is a turnkey opportunity for buying a fully functioning operation that would cost far more time and money to construct from scratch. In addition, the owners would be open to selling animals and equipment with the land and improvements. If you have been looking for a way to skip all the growing pains and step directly into a great sheep and goat ranch with all of the ideal natural features and improvements you could ever desire, then you need to schedule a showing today.