Ranch Broker Road Trips

By: Tim Murphy

Each year Hall and Hall travels nearly a million miles in pickup trucks, small aircraft, helicopters and ATV’s.  I don’t know a single one of us that has to refer to a map to know where we are going.  To each of us on our own regional turf, this is familiar territory and nobody does road trips better than we do.  Our partners, management staff, appraisers and lenders all have depth in this industry far beyond our collective colleagues and countless miles and hours behind the wheel.  It’s what makes us effective at what we do and valuable to our clientele.  Our opinions are generally quite calculated because we have “been there” many times before.

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A million miles sounds like something only a trucking company could accomplish.  It’s a daunting number to think about, but consider what we do and where we go.  We are extremely fortunate to live and work in one of the most beautiful places in the world and sell unique and at times massive assets within this market.  Driving thousands of miles to me is not something I dread, rather I cherish it.  On any given year I discover a new canyon or secret trout stream that most people are not aware of.  We see the best and worst of all seasons as they roll in and out.  Through the windshields we often see things that few other do.  Truthfully, I never tire of this and often take the time to pull over and photograph something interesting.

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Photography dovetails perfectly with our careers. I have been fortunate to work with many incredible professionals such as Kenton Rowe and Craig Hergert who are masters of the art.  One thing that I never knew about the hobby is that it ultimately causes you to look at everything differently.  Primarily, you see how light reacts to certain subjects.  For better or worse (I think better), you never look at anything the same ever again.  You appreciate beautiful landscapes just a little bit more than the norm.

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The best opportunities are often the ones you don’t see coming.  Upon completing a multi-day tour with clients in the Cody, Wyoming region, I was blessed with an opportunity to take a personal adventure home across the Beartooth Plateau.  The plateau is located on the east side of Yellowstone Park.  A primitive highway ascends to 11,000 feet extending for nearly 70 miles above tree line connecting the communities of Red Lodge, Cooke City and Cody via spurs of this road.  It rightfully is claimed to be one of the most scenic byways in North America, potentially in the world.

That day, I could not have timed better as the high-country was just out of winter slumber coming a bit late as parts of the region received 200% snow pack.  At 10,700 feet my thermometer read an exceptionally pleasant 64 degrees contrasted to the predicted 94 at Red Lodge below at lower elevation.  Thick wedges of snow and ice still dotted the landscape and I stopped at the Gardiner Headwall to watch skiers descend off a cornice and into a cirque to the lake below.  A short distance later I spotted a band of mountain goats 100 yards or so off the road.

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There was a place to pull over so I parked, grabbed my camera and walked downslope a bit to take a few images of them.  The light was high in the sky so I was not hopeful on any sort of quality but the ground was a complete carpet of wildflowers, the air was fresh and I was having a moment just happy to be alive and sitting in that location.  The goats were feeding towards me so I stayed put and watched as several very young kids fed and played amongst the nannies.  The kids were snow white and just starting to figure out how to forage.

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The band continued coming closer, and closer and closer. They leveled off at 10 feet and literally fed right through me.  They knew I was there but did not feel threatened despite me aiming a large camera at them and snapping 220 images hoping/praying one would turn out.  I think a few did indeed and you can see the culled photos in this gallery link- Beartooth Goat Gallery.    I found it amusing to stand up after 45 minutes to find a crowd of people had gathered above me many of whom were commenting that they were taking photos of me taking photos of the goats!  I was pretty neat from my vantage point, I am sure it was from theirs as well. This was a solo experience, and I rather enjoyed it.  It is often that we are fortunate to share these experiences with clients.  It’s a rewarding part of the process for all of us.

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Randy Shelton Interviewed by “City Streets and Country Roads”

Hall and Hall Partner Randy Shelton was interviewed by “City Streets and Country Roads.” He discusses the ranch real estate market and Hall and Hall’s history at the 14:45 mark.

City Streets Country Roads – Real Estate from Community Seven Television on Vimeo.

2016 Southeastern Land Sales

In 2016, we sold 11 southeastern properties totaling 16,000 acres. Each property presented unique challenges requiring an intimate knowledge of the land, as well as our client’s individual goals. We are grateful for the opportunities to work on these diverse landscapes throughout the South.

Texas Farm & Ranch Wildlife Management: Qualified and Appraised Land

By: Justin Bryan

There is no question that the demographics of rural land ownership continues to change. Where we were once largely an agrarian society with each of us having some ties to a farm or ranch, it is no longer the case as more of us completely live an urban life. Yet the desire to own a farm or especially a beautiful ranch, is still very much in the minds of most of us.

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For many new ranch owners, they desire the property but prefer to avoid the ownership of their own livestock herd and/or coping with grazing leases. It’s not that they don’t understand the value of livestock, they just choose not to oversee the issues involved with livestock. Instead their goals tend to revolve around increasing the abundance and health of native vegetation, being able to view a diversity of wildlife, and reinvigorating riparian/stream and fishery ecosystems. In other words, their primary use of the land is managing it for wild things.

LAND VALUATION

Historically in Texas, appraisal districts and appraised land operating with a livestock business qualify for a tax rate lower than other properties. These are known as 1-d-1 appraisals. A 1-d-1 valuation rate was not in place for those ranch owners who possessed little interest in livestock yet valued and actively invested time, money and labor into the enhancement of rangelands, forests, deserts, wetlands, wildlife, and fisheries.

Understanding that the demographics of rural land ownership in Texas was and is changing, and more importantly to support the continued landowner efforts to ecologically care for these properties, the Texas voters approved Proposition 11 in 1995. This amended 1-d-1 of the Texas Constitution thus: “to permit productivity appraisal for land used to manage wildlife.”  This was followed by House Bill 1358, “adding wildlife management as an agricultural use that qualifies the land for agricultural (productivity) appraisal.” At that point, if the primary use of the land is managing for wildlife, the land could potentially qualify for the 1-d-1 valuation rate. The passage of Proposition 11 opened the doors for landowners to maintain the 1-d-1 valuation rate by actively managing for wildlife and without the responsibility of livestock.

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REQUIREMENTS TO QUALIFY WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT USE  

  1. The land must have been qualified and appraised as 1-d-1 agricultural land in the year prior to conversion to wildlife management use.
  2. Land must be used to generate a sustaining breeding, migrating or wintering population of indigenous wild animals.
  3. The indigenous wildlife populations must be produced for human use.

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APPLICATION TO QUALIFY FOR WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT USE

  1. The landowner must submit a wildlife management plan to the chief tax appraiser in the county between January 1 and April 30 of the tax year.
  2. The landowner must perform 3 of the 7 management practices each year.
    1. Habitat Control (Management)
    2. Erosion Control
    3. Predator Control (Management)
    4. Providing Supplemental Supplies of Water
    5. Providing Supplemental Supplies of Food
    6. Providing Shelter
    7. Making Census Counts to Determine Population

For more detailed information or assistance with the agricultural tax valuation for wildlife use, feel free to contact us at Hall and Hall Farm and Ranch Management Services: Justin Bryan ([email protected]).

Additional information regarding the wildlife valuation can be found at: http://comptroller.texas.gov/taxinfo/proptax/pdf/96-354.pdf or http://forages.tamu.edu/PDF/Wildlife%20Management%20as%20Agricultural%20Use%20for%20Property%20Tax%20Valuation%20in%20Texas.pdf

 

York Lodge at Delta Marsh: Top Duck Hunting Property in Canada

The 50,000-acre Delta Marsh is an extensive open marsh located along the south shore of Lake Manitoba 60 miles west of Winnipeg that provides critical breeding and staging habitat for numerous migratory bird species. In waterfowl circles, Delta Marsh is among the most storied hunting destinations in North America and renown for its large concentrations of canvasback ducks which stage in the marsh each fall.

Beginning this month, waterfowl hunters from around the world make a pilgrimage to Delta Marsh in search of “cans”  and other sought after diving and puddle ducks such as redheads, bluebills, ringnecks, mallards, pintails, and teal.   Much of the marsh is managed by the Province of Manitoba as part of the Delta Marsh Wildlife Management Area, although there are scattered private holdings within the marsh.

Hall and Hall is honored to offer for the sale the largest of these private tracts referred to as York Lodge at Delta Marsh, which consists of 3,600+/- acres and 8+/- of shoreline along Lake Manitoba.  Combining marsh, open water, and beachfront, this diverse property was originally purchased in the 1920s by James Ford Bell, founder of General Mills, who was drawn to Delta Marsh because of its epic canvasback hunting.  A series of water controlled management areas have been developed within the property and can be managed to attract an impressive number of dabbling ducks, while points, channels, and open water bays offer classic diver hunting.  The property’s forested lake shore separates Delta Marsh from Lake Manitoba and provides excellent whitetail hunting.

New Wilderness Areas and Idaho Ranches For Sale

By: Trent Jones

This month marks the first anniversary of President Obama’s signing legislation designating three adjacent federal wilderness areas in central Idaho.  The Hemingway-Boulder Wilderness (106 sq. miles) and the White Clouds Wilderness (142 sq. miles) will be managed by the Forest Service as part of the existing Sawtooth National Recreation Area, while the 183 sq. mile Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness covers both national forest and BLM lands on the edge of the White Clouds mountain range.  Each agency will continue to manage its portion of the wilderness.  As federal wilderness areas, no motorized or mechanized uses are allowed, although under the new law livestock grazing on wilderness lands will be allowed to continue.

Two of Hall and Hall’s listings are located immediately adjacent to these new wilderness areas. Robinson Bar Ranch lies on the north end of the White Clouds Wilderness at the confluence of Warm Springs Creek and the Salmon River.  A foot trail leading from the ranch upstream along Warm Springs Creek leads hikers and horseback riders into the wilderness and connects with a larger backcountry trail network that traverses the White Clouds range.

Robinson Bar Ranch

Robinson Bar Ranch

Lost Peaks Ranch and its BLM grazing permit are located on the east side of Jerry Peak adjacent to the Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness.  The ranch lies at the mouth of a valley that leads directly onto Jerry Peak and into the wilderness area.  Lightly used and offering lots of solitude, Jerry Peak and the surrounding area are home to some of central Idaho’s most prolific big game herds.

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Lost Peaks Ranch