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    Marketing British Columbia to the World®
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    The Historic Riverfront Mandalay Ranch - Vanderhoof, BC

    Robson Valley & Fraser Fort George, Bulkley Nechako Listing No. 20219

    5,445 deeded acres with approx. 10 miles of frontage on the Stuart River. 23 individual titles. 40 km from Vanderhoof. 200 amp power and telephone. Tons of game including a large herd of elk. Ideal large private hunting retreat. A great agricultural investment.


    Price
    $3,790,000

    Size
    5443 acres ~ 23 titles

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    Description

    The historic Mandalay Ranch is 5,445 sprawling deeded acres with approximately 10 miles of water frontage on the beautiful Stuart River. Please refer to the History Section below to read about the interesting heritage of the Mandalay Ranch property. Mandalay sits right on the edge of British Columbia’s untouched wilderness. The ranch is comprised of 23 individual titles and is located 40 km from Vanderhoof or 1.75 hours from Prince George. The ranch is divided by the Stuart River which runs east to west through the centre of the ranch. Approximately 60% of the ranch lies to the north of the river and 40% the south of the river. The current options for accessing the north part of the ranch include by boat, launching at the end of Sturgeon Point Road where it meets the river, alternatively you would need to travel to Prince George, cross the Stuart River and follow a Forest Service Road along the north side of the river into the property. Years ago the owners had cable barge that provided access across the river for vehicles, logging equipment and animals, however the barge was dismantled almost 20 years ago.

    This ranch needs work to bring it back to its former glory. The fields and fencing have been left to fend for themselves and fallen trees and Mother Nature are doing their best to reclaim the ranch. Historically the south side of the river is where the productive hay land on the property is located. With work, there are areas on the north side that could be brought into production, with the majority of the land quite flat and suitable for pasture. On the south side there are approximately 800 acres in cleared and open hayfields, although in recent years the owners have only taken a hay crop off less than half this area. There was a significant period of time where the ranch was not operated, and an investment in the fields, fencing and the buildings will be needed to bring the ranch back to its full potential. The landscape is absolutely picturesque with natural meadows, treed areas, open fields, valleys and hills. 7 out of 13 parcels on the north side and 9 out of 10 parcels on the south side are water frontage properties.

    An excellent mid- to long-term investment, this property has everything a savvy investor should be considering these days as our world population grows exponentially . . . quality valley bottom agricultural land for food production, massive access to water and abundant wild game. The ranch is currently offered at $696 per acre giving this investment nothing but upside potential.

    Although this property is 40 km from Vanderhoof, it is still fully serviced with 200 amp power and telephone. Buildings on the property include an older 4 bedroom home with beautiful view of the river, a large open-face equipment shed and numerous storage buildings. No equipment is included, however some may be negotiable. Permitted zoned uses include (but are not limited to) outdoor recreation facilities; primitive campsite; guest ranch; rural retreat; unpaved airstrips and helipads for use of aircraft flying. Two-family dwelling allowed on the 6 parcels that are not in the ALR. Majority of fencing is game fencing as the seller has run over 100 head of buffalo on the ranch.

    The trophy recreational aspect of this property cannot be overstated. Property is home to abundant large game, and would be perfect for a fishing/hunting resort or as a large private hunting retreat. The ranch is located at the end of a no-thru road. There is a huge elk herd already calling this ranch its home and an abundance of other wildlife like moose, deer, birds, grizzly, black bear, wolves and coyotes to just name a few.

    Large parcels of land with water and an agricultural component are becoming harder and harder to find and are without question now one of the leading purchases for a knowledgeable investor. The value of this property will grow exponentially over time.

    Please call the listing REALTOR® today for more information or to book a time to visit Mandalay Ranch.

    Location

    38047 Sturgeon Point Rd - Vanderhoof, BC

    Access

    From Vanderhoof take Sturgeon Point Rd for 12 kilometres.

    Area Data

    Vanderhoof

    (pop. 4,470)

    This historic ranching and farming community is at the geographic centre of the province located at the junction of Highway 16 and Highway 27. Due to nearby rural communities without services Vanderhoof actually supports nearly 10,000 people. Forestry is the number one industry, followed by ranching and farming. Vanderhoof is in a rich, fertile valley known for its cattle ranches and dairy farms. It is the second largest forage crop production area in the province with agriculture as the second largest industry in the region.

    Vanderhoof’s strategic location on the Highway 16 and the northern main line of the CN railway makes it an important transportation, supply and service centre with several government offices, schools, hospital, medical clinic, shopping centre, 17 restaurants, 7 hotels/motels, theatre, bowling alley and a golf course. The area is served by rail and air (land and float planes). The Vanderhoof Airport has an asphalt runway 5,018 feet in length and 100 feet in width and can accommodate most planes. The Nechako River, which joins the Fraser River at Prince George, runs along the north edge of Vanderhoof. There are a number of very nice residences along the river whose owners have both boats and floatplanes. From this river you can go on waterways for over 200 kilometres, up rivers and lakes.

    Vanderhoof is the “Heart of it All” offering affordable housing, reasonable tax rates, great education, superior health services, access to government services and a strong retail and service sector. Vanderhoof is rich in culture, history, natural resources and recreational opportunities abound.

    Recreation

    Beaumont Provincial Park

    Beaumont Provincial Park provides campers with open views of Fraser Lake and a breeze that keeps the mosquitoes away. Vehicle and tent campsites are available just off Highway 16 near the community of Fraser Lake to the west of Vanderhoof. Beaumont was the site of the historic Fort Fraser in the 1840s, and there are still a few signs of the habitation around the park.

    Stellako River Wildlife Management Area

    Stellako River Wildlife Management Area protects 503 hectares of river and riparian habitat along the Stellako River near Fraser Lake. The Stellako River is one of the top rainbow trout river fisheries in BC, and is also used by chinook and sockeye salmon. The area is a destination for sport fishing and other recreational opportunities.

    Camping

    There are three seasonal campgrounds/RV parks in Vanderhoof and a number of camping and RV sites in the surrounding area. Vanderhoof Forest District provides forestry campsites in the area. While not all of them offer sophisticated amenities, such as power hookups or piped water, they do include basic sanitary facilities, fire rings, picnic tables and, where appropriate, boat launch ramps.

    Hiking

    During the Klondike gold rush in the late 1890s, a telegraph line was constructed to connect the gold fields to the rest of civilization. The telegraph fell out of use in the 1930s with the advent of radio technology. Some parts of the old trail still survive; the longest of these connects Telegraph Creek to Atlin. A section of the Telegraph Trail runs from Hogsback Lake, south of Vanderhoof, for about 10 km until it is lost under Blackwater Road. Other trails in the area include the Home Lake Trail. You can hike to the lake and back in a day but, as the Forest Service has been kind enough to build a cabin at the lake for you to use, why not stay the night? The trailhead is located at km 42.5 on the Kluskus Forest Service Road. About 10 km beyond is the Johnson Lake Trail, about 5 km one way. There’s no cabin here, but it’s a pretty spot to pitch a tent and enjoy swatting the mosquitoes as the sun sets. A short distance beyond that on the Kluskus Forest Service Road is the Gluten Lake Trail, which leads 6 km east to Gluten Lake, past Zippermouth Lake. Maps are available at the Visitor Centre.

    Paddling

    Paddlers can challenge the Stellako River and the Nechako River, both suitable for novice and experienced canoeists. Located near the edge of the Lakes District, which comprises over 300 lakes, canoeing is very popular in this area, and you are seldom far from a place to paddle.

    Lakes and Rivers

    Numerous lakes and rivers in the area provide excellent fishing, canoeing, boating and waterskiing. Immediately south of Vanderhoof are Tachick, Nulki and Sinkut Lakes and major rivers include the Nechako that runs past Vanderhoof, and Stuart River toward Fort St. James. The region contains the headwaters of the Fraser, Stikine and Mackenzie River systems.

    Golf

    Golfers can tee off at the par 72, 18 hole Omineca Golf Course.

    Murray Ridge Ski Hill

    72 kilometres (45 miles) north of Vanderhoof, Murry Ridge Ski Hill offers downhill skiing and snowboarding, while hockey, curling, figure skating and ringette tournaments are held throughout winter in Vanderhoof. Murray Ridge Ski Hill contains 20 miles of runs, accessible by a T-bar lift, and well-groomed cross-country ski trails.

    Cross-Country Skiing

    Lakes and rivers freeze during winter in this region, creating level playgrounds for snowmobilers and cross-country skiers. The Nechako Valley Sporting Association maintains some of the numerous trails in the area, including 30 km of groomed trails at Waterlily Lake, located north of town off Highway 16 on Sturgeon Point Road. These same trails are open to mountain bikers in the summer.

    History

    Mandalay Ranch has some amazing heritage and history - READ BELOW!!

    “The Mandalay”

    Built in 1924 by the Whiteacre family of Vancouver, the Mandalay house continues to stir the curiosity of all those who encounter it. There is still a mystery surrounding the reasons why Whiteacre, a wealthy gentleman from far away Vancouver built the Mandalay. Was it speculation? Was it a dream to be master of his own personal utopia, at a time when the world was preparing to face the largest battle yet known to mankind—World War I? From its perch overlooking the Stuart River, this isolated Northern British Columbia homestead is perceived by locals and tourists alike as being slightly excessive, slightly out of the ordinary for its time and place. Though there are no golden pagodas in sight and no temple bells can be heard, its name conjures up the exotic images presented to us in Rudyard Kipling’s popular ballad “Mandalay.”

    Following the railway boom (1906-1914) and enticed by the promises made by promoters offering free land and prosperity for all, Whiteacre along with as many as 20 other families claimed the land along the banks of the Stuart River—an area remote even by Northern standards. Whiteacre bought the 1,000-acre homestead and built the original house circa 1915-1916. Labor for the clearing of land and construction of the houses and outbuildings was hired out to locals, providing much needed employment to both Natives and new settlers in the area. Whiteacre managed the ranch from afar. He relied on caretakers to oversee his holdings throughout the year, returning to the Mandalay for summer visits.

    Stories breathing life into the earliest history of this community can still be heard firsthand from Charlie (Chuck) Davidson, a resident of the area since 1921, and Dorothy James, who spent part of her childhood, during the 1930s, in the community. Olive Fredrickson, another Stuart-River resident has immortalized these tales of courage and triumph in her well-known book, Silence of the North. Despite its many challenges the area offered fertile river-bottom land, an abundance of wild game and fish, and the prospect of money to be made in the fur trade and later mining. Fueled with the breathtaking beauty of the valley alive with its many natural meadows, lakes and streams, it is no wonder all that came were charmed into staying.

    In 1921 a bridge was built across the Stuart River that connected the Mandalay on the isolated north shore to the one road accessing the area at the time. Whiteacre and the Department of Public Works each contributed half the funds needed to complete the project. The bridge remained operational into the 1950s, when it was accidentally burned down. In the late 1920s community members came together to build a schoolhouse on the north side of the river. The school served as many as 26 local children at one time.

    The newer Mandalay house stood out among its neighbors sporting two floors, eight bedrooms, two bathrooms, in-door plumbing and electric lights. Charlie Davidson recalls summer picnics at the Mandalay as a child—complete with ice cream! He also describes the wonder of feeding the music card through a gas-powered player piano during these visits to the house. This grand instrument can be seen today on display at the Vanderhoof museum. Vanderhoof resident, Dorothy James recollects boating across the river to the Mandalay house as a child in the 1930s. The children were welcomed during these visits by caretakers John and Sadie Hamilton. Dorothy has fond memories of being doted on by the childless couple who indulged the children’s delight in turning the electric lights on and off, and of Sadie who enjoyed playing her piano for them.

    Following the wave of prosperity that came on the heels of World War II many families left their Stuart River homesteads. In 2002, 85-year old Charlie Davidson and his wife Ann continue to raise cattle and farm the rich soil of the Stuart River Valley. The Mandalay has had a few different owners since the Whiteacres sold it in 1945. Thanks in part to its caretakers over the years the house is still standing. Its most recent full-time resident, George Rustad, left in 1995. Gene Scott and his family bought the Mandalay and its surrounding properties in 1974. Gene lives with his wife Genevieve (Gen) just downstream from Charlie in a house once occupied by writer, Olive Fredrickson. At 75 Gene continues to work the land and tend to his herd of 125 bison.

    Few remnants remain from the early days. The valley is slowly recovering the space once taken up by the brave, resourceful people of the early Stuart River settlement. The Mandalay remains today, stubbornly rooted in the banks of the Stuart River—still mysterious and exotic. On warm summer nights, if you close your eyes, you can hear her whispering promises of a life “where the best is like the worst,” where “the wind is in the palm-trees, and the temple bells they say . . . come you back to Mandalay.”

    Boundaries

    Please see mapping section - all boundaries are approximate.

    Map Reference

    54° 9'43.93"N and 123°32'59.76"W

    Services

    • Hydro
    • Phone
    • Well
    • Septic

    Improvements

    • Older 4-bedroom home with beautiful view of the river
    • Large open-face equipment shed
    • Numerous storage buildings

    Tax Details

    $7,575 (2019)

    Zoning

    AG-1/RR1

    Legal

    Please contact REALTOR® for legal descriptions.

    Maps & Plans

    Map01

    Maps & Plans

    Our property descriptions and geographical information are taken from the BC Assessment Authority, Land Titles Office, government maps and other sources. While LandQuest® does not guarantee the information, we believe it to be accurate, but should not be relied upon without verification. This communication is not intended to cause or induce breach of an existing agency agreement.