Williams Fork Mountain Ranch Colorado: A massive, wildlife-rich ranch situated within minutes of a world-class ski resort sounds like a nearly unbelievable find in the twenty-first century, but the Williams Fork Mountain Ranch, a short drive from fabulous Steamboat Springs, is no myth. This ranch, comprised of over 21 square miles of amazingly productive elk and deer habitat, is the real deal and is undeniably one of the finest remaining large wildlife properties in all of Colorado.
For many years, wildlife biologists have identified the White River elk herd as the largest elk herd in the world, numbering approximately 37,000 animals. This herd ranges freely over the Williams Fork Mountain Ranch, including several hundred animals that are completely resident on the ranch year-round. As a well-blocked property (not fragmented by other public or private parcels) the Williams Fork Mountain Ranch offers unusual potential to manage habitat and herd quality to the highest possible degree.
Many features bless the Williams Fork Mountain Ranch as a veritable paradise for elk. Diverse habitat comprised of rolling grassland hills broken up with stands of aspen and oakbrush provide the variety of cover and grazing that a large elk herd requires. Water sources are abundant, including many springs and seeps, ponds, drinkers, eight wells and the perennial East Fork of the Williams Fork River. With elevations ranging from 6900 to 7900 feet, winters are relatively mild compared with most of the Rockies, permitting the herd to thrive. Finally, 1052 acres on the north side of the ranch are managed for dryland farming and serve as an effective big game magnet.