River Island Ranch began with a simple idea: there’s no need to daydream about Gold Medal trout water if you’re living on it. Nestled discreetly along the upper Rio Grande River near South Fork, CO, the properties at River Island Ranch—which range in size from a few cozy acres to up to 30—provide an opportunity to experience the best of the Colorado mountain lifestyle. Land owners have access to over one mile of Gold Medal water on the Rio Grande, complete with 18-inch, dry fly sipping browns; 1.8 million acres of national forest just outside their back door; golf in summer and skiing in winter; and the comfort that comes with being a part of a rural mountain community in the West.
Once upon a time, the upper Rio Grande River valley was the kind of place where stage coach travelers—and later passengers on the narrow-gauge Denver & Rio Grande Railroad—could stop and stretch their legs while taking in the stunning vistas of 12, 385 ft. Del Norte Peak. As ranches, depots and missions sprang up around what is now known as South Fork, it became a picture-postcard scene of the old west: a natural gathering point situated at the confluence of the South Fork and main-stem of the Rio Grande River, tucked snuggly among the San Juan Mountains at the southern end of the Rockies.
These days, stagecoaches and steam engines have been replaced by the quiet swirl of oars in the Rio Grande, the determined footsteps of hikers and hunters in Rio Grande National Forest, the satisfying thwack of drivers at nearby Rio Grande Golf Club, and the slicing swish of skis at Wolf Creek Ski Area, just 30 miles away. While some make visits to the valley for a brief escape from the frenzied pace of nearby urban centers, others have chosen to call it home—if not full time, then at least for part of the year. For those who dream of living within a stone’s throw—or even on—Gold Medal trout water in the Colorado Rockies, the properties at River Island Ranch are one of the best opportunities to make that dream a reality.
With properties starting at $40k, River Island Ranch is a place where anyone can carve out their own little slice of the West. Riverfront properties are available, as are other more secluded parcels that border the national forest—putting public lands literally right outside your backdoor. Regardless of location, each property is a blank slate with something for everyone, whether looking for a simple, rustic getaway or a place to enjoy a well-earned retirement. No matter what you choose to do with your property there, one thing is for certain: River Island Ranch is home.
Stop daydreaming and start living. Visit RiverIslandLand.com to find your new home water.