For Sale

Clear Rock Ranch

$18,500,000 Johnson City, TX 994± Deeded Acres

Executive Summary

Clear Rock Ranch, located one hour from Austin or San Antonio, is situated squarely in the center of one of the most dynamic growth areas in the USA, yet is naturally shielded from outside intrusion by hills and ridges. Lying at the end of an owned, private paved driveway, this ranch has long been an area showplace, and has hosted politicians from LBJ to Sam Rayburn. The present owners have completed a remarkable makeover of the old ranch, and the result is a clean, sophisticated venue for all kinds of fun and recreation, from water sports to trophy hunting to game viewing. The natural variety of the place is simply stunning, and the water features are second to none. Soaring ridgelines overlook clean, fertile hayfields bordered by heritage live oak, pecan and elm. Uniquely sculpted cliffs line the waterways in places, creating an exotic backdrop for the noisy waters. Fully staffed and equipped, the ranch is a turn-key offering in excellent condition, and can continue to operate as a hunting and ecotourism venue if a new owner so desires.

Just the Facts

  • 994± acres listed for $18,500,000
  • One hour from Austin or San Antonio
  • Highly improved live water showplace
  • Multiple fishing lakes
  • High fenced and stocked with exotic and domestic game
  • Extensive building renovations by Escobedo Group
  • Landscaping by Christy Ten Eyck
  • Rainwater collection and storage
  • Wonderful variety of terrain and vegetation

General Description

Clear Rock Ranch is located in the ecoregion of the Edwards Plateau Woodland. It contains the central part of the Edwards Plateau and receives sufficient rainfall to support woodland. The Edwards Plateau region comprises an area of central Texas commonly known as the Texas Hill Country. It is a land of many springs, stony hills, and steep canyons. The region is home to a whole host of rare plants and animals found nowhere else on earth. Average annual rainfall ranges from 15 to 34 inches. Rainfall is highest in May or June and September. Soils of the Edwards Plateau are usually shallow with a variety of surface textures. They are underlain by limestone. Elevations range from slightly less than 100 feet to over 3,000 feet above sea level. Several river systems dissect the surface, creating a rough and well-drained landscape. The limestone of the Edward’s Plateau is honeycombed with thousands of caves. Beneath the eastern edge of the Plateau lies a hidden world of underground lakes known as the Edwards Aquifer. This precious water resource also is home to a number of curious creatures, such as the blind salamander. Today, the Edwards Plateau is characterized by grasslands, juniper/oak woodlands, and plateau live oak or mesquite savannah. Open grasslands and savannahs were more common in pre-settlement times than they are today. The grasslands of Ecoregion 30a are considered a southern extension of the mixed grass prairie, expressed as tallgrass or shortgrass dependent upon soil type, moisture availability, and grazing pressure. Grasses include little bluestem, Texas wintergrass, yellow Indiangrass, white tridens, Texas cupgrass, sideoats grama, seep muhly, and common curlymesquite. Ranching is the primary agricultural industry in the region.

Broker's Comments

Clear Rock Ranch is a premier hunting, recreation and eco-tourist destination, for a single family or a large corporation, with a spectacular location between Austin, San Antonio and the Highland Lakes. The land possesses all of the variety and characteristics one could ever seek in the Texas Hill Country. The facilities are high-end and thoughtfully planned and maintained. The live water is as good as it gets in this area, with several spring-fed lakes offering fishing and water recreation year-round. If one seeks the best of the best in turn-key operating condition located in the sweet spot of the Hill Country, Clear Rock Ranch is a must-see!

Learn about the locale

Location

The ranch is located in Henly, Texas, about 35 miles west of Austin, the Capital of the State of Texas, and the center of one of the most dynamic growth areas in the USA. Access to the ranch is directly off US 290W via a one-mile paved access road constructed on a fee simple strip of land that is part of the subject property. The site is equidistant to Dripping Springs and Johnson City (10 miles), and about 55 miles north of San Antonio, the nation’s 7th largest city. Marble Falls and the famed Highland Lakes are just 30 miles north.

Locale

The immediate area is composed of small to large Hill Country recreational ranches, with one adjoiner being over 2,500 acres, and three others 1,000+ acres. This ranch is part of a larger ranch that was divided in the mid 2000’s into several parcels, all of which are deed restricted against small tract subdivision and nuisance and/or noxious activities. This has resulted in a scenic Hill Country “neighborhood” of several showplace properties that border this very secluded ranch.


Area ranch activities include hunting for both native and exotic wildlife, modest livestock production, eco-tourism, water recreation, hay production, vineyards and orchards. Old family ranches in the area are being scooped up by well-heeled and financed buyers, and transformed into unique family compounds, while adhering to the most progressive and thoughtful development and conservation techniques.


One can still see the stars out here at night, and highly interesting and entertaining activities are common around the neighboring communities of Blanco, Johnson City, Dripping Springs and Wimberley. Blanco is known for its Lavender Festival, and the famed Texas Wine Corridor starts only 10 minutes away in Johnson City. The 25 mile stretch of US 290 between Johnson City and Fredericksburg now has some 40+ wineries, tasting rooms, distilleries and breweries, while Fredericksburg itself remains a prized shopping and dining destination. The property address is: 1224 Clear Rock Ranch Road.


Aesthetic Considerations

Clear Rock’s understated, beautifully designed entrance expertly foreshadows what lies ahead for the visitor. There are few Texas Hill Country ranches that possess more natural beauty and variety than Clear Rock, with its dramatic ridgelines towering over fertile valleys, dotted with lush hayfields. Yeager Creek is the epicenter, and all else rises above and around it, resulting in a landscape that is about as perfect as one could ever imagine. Sculpted limestone cliffs, wooded ridges and level fields flanked by heritage live oaks are sprinkled amongst lakes and creeks, and are served by a handsome infrastructure of the highest level.


The ranch offers a total elevation change of some 220 feet, with the highest points affording views up to 20 or more miles across the distant hills. Hardwoods are in abundance, and include Live Oak, Post Oak, Spanish Oak, Elm, Walnut, Pecan and Hackberry. Cedar has been removed or thinned in some 300+ acres, but remains thick in others, providing quality cover for domestic and exotic wildlife. Resident species include elk, blackbuck, fallow deer, barasingha, axis and whitetail deer. Pairs of zebras and zeedonks add a novel element for tours of the ranch.


Soils include deep clays along the drainage bottoms, with caliche hillsides punctuated by scenic limestone outcrops. Valley fields are in winter or annual grasses, and hay continues to be cultivated for winter sustenance. Over 50 acres are planted annually as supplemental food plots for the wildlife. Overall, this ranch is considered “above average” for this area with regard to agricultural production potential, and hilltops often possess areas of deeper, dark soils. 

Learn more about the property

Acreage (Deeded & Leased)

Deeded Acres: 994±

Total Acres: 994±

Additional Information

Seller will provide current survey and basic title insurance. Owned mineral rights, wind rights and water rights will convey at an acceptable price, as will all equipment, accessories and furniture. The ranch and adjoining lands are subject to restrictive covenants. There is an existing development plan of the ranch that will be shared with a new owner. There is an emergency flood easement through the northwest portion benefiting an adjacent neighbor that has never been used. There are no other known easements other than utility, which is provided by Pedernales Electric Coop. Additionally, the local telephone provider has installed an underground fiber optic cable from US 290 to the residential compound anticipating high-speed internet and cable service in the near future.


Improvements

The improvements and infrastructure on Clear Rock Ranch are second to none, yet meld with the land and terrain seamlessly, and were created and are still maintained at a very high level. Landscape design by Christy Ten Eyck results in a unique entry, and attractive, low maintenance landscapes. The stellar dwellings feature the extensive craftsmanship of the renowned Escobedo Group, of Buda, Texas. The overall goals are reclamation, function, style and consistency, and upon inspection, one can readily observe that they have all been achieved. 

The sophisticated, yet simple entrance opens to a private, paved lane which winds one mile to the ranch’s secure entrance. An extensive, improved road system serves the entire ranch, and there is interior high fencing of some of the fields. Most of these roads and fencing are new or almost new, and are in excellent condition with solar powered gate openers throughout the ranch. A number of service structures, sheds and shelters supplement the infrastructure and allow for ease of operation, maintenance and covered storage for equipment.

Central to everything are the two Main Lodge structures, supremely situated on bluffs overlooking the central Yeager lake, surrounded by impressive xeriscaping and huge boulder work. Both of these structures are total remodels/add-ons to existing buildings, and serve unique functions for the current owners of the ranch. One is designed to house guests and family, while the other is designed to separately house the owners and their offices. All appointments are stylish yet understated, and construction and finishes were executed by highly skilled craftsmen.

The Main Lodges represent about 5,500 square feet excluding porches and provide 4BR and 5BA, and have wonderful, open floor plans designed for entertaining. These buildings offer unique accessory features including screened porches, sun room, outdoor patios, stone fireplaces, and a spectacular metal deck extending over the limestone cliffs. All of the exterior “rooms” are expertly lighted at night and are independently controlled. The tree canopies are lighted carefully and safely connect all of the outdoor spaces and buildings. Raised planting beds are a few steps away from the owner’ living quarters and yield fresh vegetables, tomatoes and herbs every season.

The “Stone House” is a detached guest house with 1BR/1BA, a full kitchen, and an open plan living room and dining area. Featuring all of the same high end finishes and stylish touches as the main houses, the 1,200 square foot Stone House with a covered porch provides a solid view of the central lake. This building is within easy walking distance of other ranch structures.

The Writer’s Studio is a unique, award-winning structure perched above a cliff on Yeager Creek. It is a contemporary design constructed of carbon steel and glass. Deliberately situated separate from the other structures, the Studio blends into the landscape nicely, yet provides comfortable quarters for game viewing, cocktails and contemplation. More primitive, the “Shoot the Sh-t” blind houses all eight toilets from the bathrooms of the old Clear Rock Ranch lodge, arranged in a former gazebo to enhance “discussion.” Other whimsical features can be found on the ranch with close inspection.

An old ranch corral, including sheds, barns, silos and wood fences, is movie-set material, and has hosted numerous concerts, BBQ cook-offs and educational events. A large concrete silo has schematic plans for an office that can be accessed by an internal spiral staircase. Nearby is a three stall horse barn with tack and feed room in good condition. Generally speaking, this picturesque area is officially classified as “delightful, and it reflects the heritage of the ranch.”

An impressive, 1,200 square foot “Trophy Room” houses trophy game specimens, includes a wet bar and half bath, and serves as an excellent meeting room. It is adjoined by a professional grade game processing facility, including large, walk-in cold storage and extensive cleaning areas, with roll-up door and a one ton crane.

Close by is the “Fire Station,” which, among other things, houses the ranch’s functional fire truck. This is a steel frame building with sheltered bays and an inside shop/storage area, encompassing some 2,200 square feet, with exterior board and batten finish. Supplementing this are several small, wooden equipment barns, a firing shed and two metal sheds close by, all in good condition.

The “Jeffe House” serves as a guest house for visiting hunters, ecotourists and special event participants, and is a clean modular home of 3BR/2BA, totaling about 1,200 square feet, excluding wraparound porches. It has a nice back porch with an exterior fire pit overlooking a hayfield and feeder to the east. The Jeffe House has been well-maintained, and is used regularly.

Most of the ranch is high fenced, but there are two low fenced sections near the entrance that are not, one containing the manager’s quarters, which is a modular home of 3BR/2BA with a porch and yard. The other contains the former site of an 8,500 square foot, lodge-style mansion that burned in the 1970’s and was rebuilt at that time, then razed by the current owners around 2010 because of obsolete systems. This home site is impressive, offering a commanding view of the entire ranch and central valley to the south. The present owners have commissioned a well-known Austin architect to prepare plans for a contemporary home designed on this site, which they are willing to share with seriously interested parties, subject to the architect’s approval.

Water Resources

Clear Rock Ranch is blessed with abundant surface and subsurface water, all accessible and usable, and distributed across much of the ranch. Spring-fed Yeager Creek flows through the ranch for almost two miles over a solid rock bottom, and gives one a delightful mix of falls, riffles and holes along its length. Three dams create splendid, small lakes that are full of fish, and a deeper 2.5 acre lake on a separate drainage offers both bank and float fishing.

“Niagara Falls,” below one of the Yeager Dams, is an impressive sight indeed when the flow is high. All Yeager lakes are highly suitable for swimming, kayaking, fishing and floating, and lake banks are clean, well grassed and directly accessible at many locations. Lakes are stocked with bass, perch, catfish and bream, and a 20 lb. catfish has been harvested by current owners. Several 10 lb. largemouth bass have been caught in all of the lakes, and 1 lb. bream are common.

Multiple branches into Yeager also offer similarly interesting features, and have strong flow much of the time. The “Oasis” is a sweet spot on one of the branches, featuring a roaring waterfall gushing into an awesome swimming hole, in a totally private, naturally landscaped setting.

An excellent ranch watering system is in place, powered by six working wells with submersible pumps. Rainwater supplies the residences from a 60,000 gallon storage tank. All water systems are state of the art, well-marked and maintained, and are in turn-key condition. Good sweet groundwater is found at 400 – 600 feet in this area, and well yields of 30+ gpm are not uncommon. For more information on area groundwater, contact the Blanco-Pedernales Groundwater Conservation District or visit their website.

Other Properties

More Like This

Rancho Kendall

Sisterdale, TX

Rancho Kendall is 883± gorgeous acres on the Guadalupe River, just north of booming Boerne. Gently rolling, forested land includes clean fields, horse facilities and a paved airstrip.

883± Deeded Acres
$14,569,500
View Property Details

Elm Creek Ranch

Shamrock, TX

Elm Creek Ranch is a 3, 112± acre oasis in the eastern Texas Panhandle that has been managed for wild quail for the past 20+ years. Located near Shamrock in Collingsworth County, Texas.

3,113± Deeded Acres
$4,620,000
View Property Details