Located in what many consider to be Montana’s most beautiful and unsung valley just below its namesake 10,463-foot Warren Peak, the ranch encompasses 6,395± acres (5,755± deeded) with miles of a small trout stream passing through. Situated 12 paved miles southwest of Philipsburg, the property is modestly improved and is essentially a clean slate for a new owner. Besides the stunning views, its beauty lies in over 1,200 acres of irrigated production and thousands of acres of timber and rangeland that offers both a summer home for livestock and year-round wildlife habitat for deer and elk, as well as moose, black bear, mountain lion and even wolves on occasion. Snow skiing is 30 minutes away at Discovery Basin and it is equidistant to the main stem of Rock Creek, a blue-ribbon trout fishery. The 158,000-acre Anaconda-Pintler Wilderness is your backyard.
Call Hall and Hall Auctions today to request a brochure!
Auction Date and Location:
Monday, November 19th @ 10:00 am
Held at The Ranch at Rock Creek
79 Carriage House Lane
Philipsburg, Montana 59858
Inspection Dates and Location:
Meet a Hall and Hall Auction representative
Tuesday, October 30th 1-4:00 pm
Held at the Property
This ranch is made up of two ranches that were assembled into one by the current owner. The two ranches complement each other perfectly with one being predominantly rangelands and timber and the other having an abundance of irrigated hay lands. Skalkaho Road forms the north boundary for almost two-and-one-half miles. The main entrance to the ranch is marked by an understated and simple ranch arch. The vista from this entrance is a postcard panorama of granite peaks holding snow most of the year. In fitting cowboy humor, this private driveway is marked on the postal maps as “Cattle Drive.” This access point is located approximately two-thirds of the distance from the northeast corner to the northwest corner. The junction of the East Fork of Rock Creek Road and Skalkaho Road is the approximate location of the northwest corner. The entire frontage along Skalkaho Road is where five of the pivot-irrigation systems are located and the topography is fairly gentle. The area south of the pivots is flood irrigated before it rises up into hills comprised of a mix of timberlands and rangelands. Trout Creek rises on the ranch at a large spring in the southeast and flows in an arc to the northwest and then eventually back to the northeast. It exits the property near the northeast corner. There is an extensive road system that provides access to most any area on the ranch.
Warren Peak has most everything a ranch buyer could want in Western Montana. The access is right off the pavement but the privacy is premium. The aesthetic of the landscape would inspire an artist to paint their masterpiece. Water is in abundance on this ranch and its productive capacity adds authenticity to the holding. This is a real ranch in an unreal location.
Learn about the locale
Warren Peak Ranch is located in Granite County, Montana, near the headwaters of Rock Creek. From the property, Missoula lies 86 miles to the northwest and Butte 52 miles east, both accessed via State Highway 1 (The Anaconda-Pintler Scenic Route) and Interstate 90. Commercial airline service is available in Missoula and Butte. Missoula has daily flights on Delta, United, Horizon and Allegiant Air with direct service to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Seattle, Denver and Phoenix.
Philipsburg, the county seat, is approximately 12 miles to the northeast. Area amenities include Georgetown Lake and Discovery Ski Area, both about 15 miles from the ranch. A lighted 3,600-foot asphalt airstrip, Riddick Field, is located at Philipsburg and provides access for most private aircraft (single and twin engine) other than jets.
Warren Peak Ranch is located west of the Continental Divide in a mountainous region of rivers and timber. Vast expanses of mountainous public lands comprise the majority of the region. The Lolo, Beaverhead and Deer Lodge National forests converge in this area.
The cultural history of the area was established by mountain men, followed by miners, with loggers and cattlemen on their heels. Philipsburg was founded in the late 1800s as a mining town for silver and manganese. It still maintains the oldest continually operating primary and secondary school in Montana. A stable population of over 800 people inhabits this historic and charming mountain mining town. Many well-preserved brick and brightly painted Victorian buildings line its main streets. Bed and Breakfasts, hotels and restaurants offer services to the tourists and locals alike. In addition, an emergency-grade hospital serves the region with a short helicopter ride to the major medical center in Missoula.
Warren Peak Ranch has a typical northern Rockies “west of the divide” climate. Occasional extremes can reach into the 90s in the summer and below zero at times in the winter, but mostly there are four distinct seasons with temperatures that are not overly punishing compared to climates elsewhere in Montana. At the closest National Weather Service station in Philipsburg, annual precipitation is reported to average between 14 and 15 inches. Snow accumulations may average as much as 18 to 20 inches on the property, with the predominate snowfall occurring between November and March. Elevations range from 5,600 feet at the northwest corner to almost 6,800 feet at the east boundary.
Learn more about the property
Acreage (Deeded & Leased)
Grazing 2,633± acres
Irrigated 1,228± acres
Forest 1,884± acres
Farm sites 9.44± acres
Deeded Acres: 5,755±
State Leased Acres: 640±
Total Leased Acres: 640±
Total Acres: 6,395±
* All acreages are approximations.
Tract 1: A quality home (over 2,000 square feet) and a 30’x38’ shop (both built in 1996).
Tract 2: Two older, single-family homes along with a large shop, corrals and other outbuildings.
Tract 3: An unfinished Candace Miller-designed guest home includes over 1,400 square feet of living space as well as 553± square feet of porch. Conceptional diagrams are available.
Tract 4: None
The ranch has a plethora of stock, domestic, and irrigation rights with priority dates ranging back to 1881. There are numerous filings on springs, Trout Creek, groundwater, and the East Fork of Rock Creek. Details are available upon request.
Seller will transfer all mineral rights owned by Seller.
Learn about the recreational amenities
Trout Creek flows through the ranch providing a modest, small-stream fishery. In the immediate area there are a multitude of other fisheries from mountain lakes, to Flint Creek, to the famous mainstem of Rock Creek itself. Of the seven “blue ribbon” trout streams located in Montana, Rock Creek is the only stream so designated found west of the Continental Divide. Rock Creek is home to populations of brown, rainbow, cutthroat, bull, and brook trout.
The size of these trout range upwards from 16 inches to 18 inches for the cutthroat and rainbow. Bull trout, known to reach over 35 inches in some areas of Montana, are also found in this stretch of the creek. The year-round fishing season allows artificial flies and lures only.
A wide variety of wildlife resides in the area and can be seen on the ranch from time to time. Elk and deer (whitetail and mule deer) are found on the ranch most any time of year. One might also expect to see the occasional moose. Other species in the area include mountain lions, eagles, ospreys, grouse, coyotes, wolves, and black bears.
Opportunities for fishing, hiking, horseback riding, skiing, snowmobiling, and hunting are prevalent at Warren Peak Ranch and on countless acres of national forest bordering the ranch and in the immediate area.
Within 16 miles of the ranch, Discovery Ski Area and Georgetown Lake also offer numerous additional recreational opportunities including downhill, cross-country, and water skiing, together with lake fishing.
Learn about the general operations
A former owner of the Warren Peak Ranch was a president of the Montana Stock Growers Association and retired from a successful ranching career after selling the ranch. Under his ownership he ran around 400 cows and an equal number of yearlings. This would equate to over 600 animal units by normal appraisal methodology. He also worked hard, maximized production from his irrigated base and, like most serious ranchers, was not overly focused on the recreational aspects of his ranch.
The current owner has been primarily interested in the wildlife and fisheries and has opted to graze the ranch lightly on a seasonal basis with about 600 cows and has little interest in maximizing production from the over 1,200 acres that are subject to irrigation - to the point that a good portion of the flood irrigated lands are currently not being irrigated at all.
Broker participation is available. Contact our office for participation guidelines.
Summary of Terms:
- A 5% buyer's premium will be added to the final bid price(s) to determine the total contract price(s).
- A 10% earnest money deposit of the total contract price will be due immediately from all successful bidders.
- The property is being sold "AS IS, WHERE IS" and without any contingencies including financing.
- Closing will be set 30 days from the auction date or as soon thereafter as closing documents are available
- The sale is subject to court approval.