The ranch is located in southwest Montana, between the growing community of Bozeman and the state’s capital of Helena. It is accessed from Highway 287 which follows the Missouri River from its headwaters at Three Forks, MT toward Helena. The nearest towns are Three Forks (approximately 7 miles southeast) and Townsend (approximately 27 miles north). Both Three Forks and Townsend are stable communities with about 2,000 residents, K-12 schools, and a wide variety of basic services.
The thriving cultural, retail, and service center of Bozeman, MT is located approximately 34 miles to the east. Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport, which is Montana’s busiest airport, is about 26 miles from the ranch. Helena lies around 64 miles to the north. Three Forks offers a paved and lighted 5,099’X60’ airstrip at 4,080 feet in elevation with instrument approaches, fuel, and hangar rentals.
Copper City Ranch lies on the south end of a broad agricultural valley that separates the Elkhorn and Big Belt Mountains. The area is known for its agriculture, primarily hay production, which is made possible by irrigation water from the Missouri River. The Missouri and nearby Canyon Ferry Reservoir attract anglers and boaters, and the surrounding mountains harbor trophy elk and other big game.
Located seven miles southeast of the ranch is the town of Three Forks. The town is named Three Forks because it is located near where the Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin Rivers converge to form the Missouri River. The area is rich in Lewis and Clark history and the nearby Missouri Headwaters State Park includes the Three Forks of The Missouri National Historic Landmark, where the Lewis and Clark Expedition camped in 1805. The abundance of trout fishing opportunities on these rivers attracts fly fishermen from across the country.
Thirty miles east of Three Forks, the town of Bozeman is the cultural, economic, retail, and transportation hub of southwest Montana. The Bozeman area has built a reputation as one of the most desirable communities in which to live in the U.S. It combines a vibrant downtown with a strong business community, an agricultural center, and Montana State University. All this is set in a beautiful, expansive mountain valley that offers virtually every recreational amenity that one could ask for in an inland location. It has attracted residents from all over the world creating a diverse population. Bozeman is a jumping off point for skiers (both alpine and Nordic), anglers, hikers, climbers, explorers, big game hunters, floaters, kayakers, and Yellowstone National Park visitors to name just a few. It has all the benefits of a resort community and university town.
The Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport became the busiest airport in Montana in 2013. The airport continues to grow and provides residents nonstop access to many of the major airports in the U.S. including New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City and Denver, as well as Seattle and other west coast airports.
Nicknamed “the first city on the Missouri River,” Townsend is primarily an agricultural community located 27 miles north of the ranch. Townsend sits near the southern tip of Canyon Ferry Lake which is fed by the Missouri River. Canyon Ferry is Montana’s third largest body of water and was formed by damming the Missouri River, which was completed in 1954. The lake is a popular destination for boaters, fishermen, and waterfowl.
Thirty-five miles north of Townsend is the state capital of Helena, MT. Helena has a rich gold rush history which contributed to the city’s prominent Victorian architecture. Helena is Montana’s sixth largest city with a population of approximately 30,000 residents and 80,000 in the greater Helena area.