Ranches and Mesas
Mesa, (Spanish and Portuguese for table) is the American English term for tableland, an elevated area of land with a flat top and sides that are usually steep cliffs. It takes its name from its characteristic table-top shape.
Depending on the location, mesa properties are approximaly 30-45 minute drive from Telluride and Mountain Village on a combination of paved and gravel roads that are maintained by San Miguel County.
Like most in the area, Hastings Mesa was homesteaded in the late 1800s. It lies to the west of Last Dollar pass between Sawpit and Ski Dallas Divide and offers spectacular views of the Wilson range to the south, pastoral landscapes and views of the Sneffels mountains to the northeast. To access, drive to the intersection of Highway 145 and County Road 58P in Sawpit 12 miles down valley from Telluride. From Highway 62, access Hastings Mesa at 56V Road at Alder Creek or further northeast at the intersection of northern County Road 58P just west of Dallas Divide.
There are several larger, historic ranches, including Last Dollar Ranch, the location site for portions of the historic True Grit film located on Hastings. Currently, there are vacant and residential properties available with 5-150+ acres with prices ranging from $150,000 – $2,500,000. Some properties remain by preference “off the grid”. While there is year-round access to the mesa, not all roads are plowed in winter requiring snowmobile access for year-round commuting to certain locations. Old Elam Ranch is a distinctive subdivision of Hastings Mesa which provides its residents with water pumped by solar power. In addition to Old Elam Ranch, other Hastings Mesa neighborhoods include San Juan Vista, Telluride Pines, Little Lakes, Hastings Mesa Estates, and Cradle Park.
Horsefly & Iron Springs Mesas
Horsefly and Iron Springs Mesas lie northwest of the intersection of Highways 145 and 62 at Placerville. To access, turn right/northwest and drive 4.5 miles on Highway 62 to County Road X48 4.5 miles on the left. The two mesas are separated by X48 Road (often referred to as Brown Ranch Road). Continuing right on X48 continues to Horsefly Mesa, continuing right at the intersection connects north to Iron Springs. Iron Springs can be also accessed further north at Highway 62 and 60X Road. Following the winding 60X Road gravel from Iron Springs Mesa will eventually connect with Dave Wood Road which continues to Montrose.
There are several available ranches and residences in this area offering 5-2,000+ acres with prices ranging from $200,000 to $13,000,000+. The more southern Horsefly Mesa includes Brown Ranch, Horsefly and McKenzie Springs Ranch, The Lakes and The Bluffs, Frontier and Shadow Mountain. Iron Springs Mesa includes the exclusive gated community of San Juan Ranch; Dancing Bear Ranch; Flat Top; and Panorama Acres.
Specie Mesa is the Telluride region’s western-most mesa, and is accessed at the intersection of Highway 145 and County Road M44 between Telluride and Norwood. This area has been known for cattle ranching since the late 1800s, and with its open ranges and large parcels it exemplifies the old west. Specie Mesa offers views of the Telluride ski resort, offers wide-open spaces. Specie Mesa currently offers ranch properties from 2,000+ to 35 acres with prices ranging from $200,000- $24,000,000. Subdivision communities include The Peninsula, Peninsula Point & Pines; Specie Mesa Ranch; and Top of The World.
This smaller mesa is closer to Telluride perched Wilson and Turkey Creek mesas. There are approximately twenty privately held parcels on Sunshine Mesa which more rarely come to market.
Turkey Creek Mesa
Adjacent to the Telluride Valley is Turkey Creek Mesa accessed from Highway 145. A large portion of this mesa was once the location of the Adams Ranch cattle and hay operation until was sold to Joe Zoline as a part of his future ski resort in the 1970s. In addition to Mountain Village, neighborhoods on Turkey Creek Mesa include West Meadows; Telluride Ski Ranches, Elk Run, The Preserve, and Raspberry Patch.
This is often Telluride’s most recognized mesa located at the base of the well-photographed Mount Wilson. To access, drive 14 miles west of Telluride on Highway 145, turning left on Fall Creek Road. The Hughes family, who once owned 10,000 acres from Wilson Mesa west to Norwood originally homesteaded the mesa in 1882. The mesa has spectacular views of not only Mount Wilson to the south, but of Telluride in the east.
There are currently parcels available on Wilson Mesa ranging in size from 7-2000+ acres with prices beginning at approximately $300,000-$30,000,000. There are several large ranch parcels on Wilson Mesa and neighborhoods offering smaller parcels from 4-40 acres including Wilson Mesa Estates, Ptarmigan Ranch and Little Cone.