The Land Report


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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S P R I N G 2 0 1 8 | The LandReport 81 LANDREPORT.COM T hose of you lucky enough to attend the 2015 Land Report Aspen Summit will no doubt remember the moving words of former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar as he described his family's heritage in the San Luis Valley, which is anchored by 83,368-acre Cielo Vista Ranch: "If you step out of my parents' home, the place where I grew up, you can look to the east and you see the beautiful mountains that are called the Sangre de Cristos — the Blood of Christ Mountains." The secretary was describing Cielo Vista. He mentioned another mountain range, the San Juans, and rivers, too — the San Antonio and the Rio Grande, the great river. His conclusion? "There is no place like it anywhere in the world." This portrayal aptly conveys the majesty of the great ranch east of the Salazars'. Cielo Vista rises from the floor of the San Luis Valley — its lowest point — some 8,000 feet above sea level. During winter, this semidesert shrubland is critical habitat for elk, mule deer, and other mammals. Higher up are montane forests, home to some of the largest stands of aspen in the world. In its coniferous forests, old-growth stands of white fir and Douglas fir date back centuries and even a millenium. The ranch's subalpine zone begins at 10,000 feet and is literally the stomping ground of North America's largest wild sheep, the Rocky Mountain bighorn. Cielo Vista's alpine zone has 18 peaks above 13,000 feet. At 14,053 feet, Culebra Peak is the highest privately-owned peak on earth. No place like it anywhere in the world, indeed. PRIVATE PARK. Cielo Vista's alpine and subalpine zones are peerless. No other deeded land in the Lower 48, Alaska, or Canada possesses comparable terrain.

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