The Land Report

Summer 2014

The Magazine of the American Landowner is an essential guide for investors, landowners, and those interested in buying or selling land. The award-winning quarterly is known for its annual survey of America's largest landowners, The Land Report 100.

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from abroad can't believe that this tremendous diversity of habitat is all privately owned," Kip says. For Kip, his wife, Astrid, and their c hildren, the ranch is primarily a place to unwind. "You can walk for miles and never meet another person. Wherever you look, as far as you can see, you're still at home." For years, Astrid made a point of taking a walk every afternoon to her favorite spot on the ranch. It gave her time to reflect and to enjoy the beauty and solitude. One Christmas Eve she asked her father-in-law, "Pa, can I have a chapel?" To her surprise, he said yes. When the little chapel was consecrated, the builder, a committed atheist, wept. "When you look across the altar and see those incredible mountains, you realize that you can't improve upon what God has created," Kip says. "My daughter was married in that little chapel. My oldest grandson was christened there. And my father's ashes lie there now." In 2004 the family implemented an 80,000-acre conservation easement to a non-profit land trust, Colorado Open Lands (www.coloradoopenlands.org). At the time, this generous donation was recognized as the largest of its kind in the history of the Centennial State, and it restricts development on the ranch as well as certain uses. In 2007, the Forbes family made the difficult decision to sell their beloved ranch. The family's legal team contacted Mark Overstreet of Chaffin Light Real Estate (which has since merged with Morris & Fyrwald Sotheby's International Realty to become Aspen Snowmass Sotheby's International Realty). Overstreet's marching orders were clear: The ranch would only be sold to a committed conservationist, one who would protect the magnifi- cent property for generations to come. Says Overstreet, "Malcolm Forbes was a great believer that much of the fun of having wonderful things is in sharing them. He always reminded the family that they were only temporary custodians. The land will outlast them. Their stewardship of the ranch is a privilege, a fulfilment of their obligation to future generations." Overstreet marketed the ranch via word of mouth. A moving video was produced by Crescent Moon Pictures. Beautifully and passionately narrated by Kip Forbes, it served as a testament to the Forbes family's commitment to an extraordinary property. Through direct one-on-one contact with qualified prospects, Overstreet and his team secured a buyer in only seven months. When the sale closed in November 2007 for $175 million, it was recognized as the most expensive residential transaction in North American history, surpassing the $165 million price of a Beverly Hills mansion once owned by Randolph Hearst. Had the Forbes family written up a description of the perfect buyer, the new owner, Louis Bacon, the founder and CEO of Moore Capital Management, LP, would have exceeded their ideal criteria. An internationally renowned conservation philanthropist, a recipient of the prestigious Audubon Medal, and the founder of The Moore Charitable Foundation, Bacon has supported habitat protection efforts from Long Island to the Everglades. Since purchasing Trinchera Blanca Ranch, Bacon has broadened and enhanced the conservation and restoration efforts the Forbeses began. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar worked with Bacon to protect the entire ranch, hailing his stewardship efforts as "the largest single conservation easement ever donated to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service." Ty Ryland has lived on the ranch since 1969. He's been the general manager since 1990. "The Forbes family always had a strong commitment to the ranch and to conservation," he says. "They allowed us to do real cutting-edge habitat improvement and wildlife management. After Mr. Bacon purchased the Trinchera Blanca Ranch, we had a great starting point to enhance and build upon the work we had been doing for years. The Forbes family could not have found a better steward of this iconic property than Mr. Bacon." Happily for Kip and his family, they still enjoy access to the Trinchera Blanca. "Most of the same staff are there and the only difference is now I have to say, 'May I?' rather than 'Let's,'" Kip says, laughing. "Louis has poured his heart and soul into the ranch. It's wonderful to see it in such caring hands." S U M M E R 2 0 1 4 | The LandReport 95 LANDREPORT.COM Above: Ranging in elevation from 7,700 feet above sea level to more than 14,000 feet, Colorado's largest ranch is home to a diverse array of species, habitats, and ecosystems. Below: A love of the American West has long been a hallmark of the Forbes family. The Land Report 100

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