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Love snow sports? Think about owning property on Grand Mesa

2018-12-12 20:01:01 hbanwco_77dnth

So Far, Snow Good

While the Grand Valley has plenty to offer for those who love the outdoors and want to live in an area where they can easily pursue their favorite outdoor activities, those who love winter sports might want to look beyond the valley. Fortunately, they don’t have to look far to find a delightful winter playground. Grand Mesa, less than an hour away from Grand Junction, has plenty of snow and plenty of places for everyone to play in the snow.

Although much of the land on Grand Mesa is part of the Grand Mesa National Forest, there are quite a few pockets of private land and leased land where those who love to live in winter can buy a main residence or a second home.

If you’re thinking of buying real estate in the winter wonderland that Grand Mesa is shaping up to be this year, here are a few considerations.

Remember, Grand Mesa is big, hence the inclusion of the word ‘grand’ in the name. The huge area offers downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice-fishing, and plain old walking in the woods on a beautiful snowy day in an area that’s about 500 square miles. Some places on Grand Mesa are better suited to those who love to ride snowmobiles, while others are better suited to those who love to ski.

Snow Blowing at Powdehorn Ski Resort

Those who love downhill skiing might want to look for a cabin, a lot or a home on the Grand Junction side of Grand Mesa, close to Powderhorn Mountain Resort. The ski area doesn’t have hundreds of second homes or vacation condos, like many of the other Colorado ski resorts, but there are a few single-family housing areas near the mountain, as well as some condominiums.

Horizon Estates is an area almost directly across Highway 65 from the ski area, where some homeowners have built homes they live in year-round, and others have built vacation cabins. There are currently a few existing homes available for sale at Horizon Estates.

Powder Ridge and Wildwood Estates are two housing areas at Powderhorn Resort. Although both neighborhoods have been around for dozens of years, there are still a few lots available in both areas. Lot sizes vary, but generally start at a quarter-acre and go up to an acre or two. Available utilities include water, electricity, and propane.

Condos at PowderhornThere is one condo development with units for sale at Powderhorn, Valley View Condominiums, which was built several decades ago, but which often has units available for sale.

Those who want to have a vacation home close to the cross-country ski area may want to keep the housing near Powderhorn in mind, as the areas where the Grand Mesa Nordic Council manages and grooms are on nearby national forest property, where there is no housing.

There are a few areas on Grand Mesa that offer cabins and second homes on leased national forest land, including the cabins near Alexander Lake, Baron Lake and Lake Eggleston that are part of the Grand Mesa Resort Company. Those cabins range from extremely rustic to fairly modern, but none of them have year-round road access, nor do they have year-round water, as the water pipes that service the area are above-ground, and are winterized in the fall.

Snow-loving and snowmobile-owning cabin owners who aren’t afraid of a more rustic experience use their cabins year round, thanks to old-fashioned outhouses and a willingness to haul in groceries and water on snowmobiles. Their reward is access to an area that’s absolutely fantastic for snowmobiling, with areas of groomed trails and miles and miles of backcountry wilderness and powder to explore.

There are also vacation cabins and lots that occasionally come onto the market near Vega State Park, where county-maintained roads provide year-round access. Snowmobile trails connect the Vega Lake area to other routes on Grand Mesa. Visitors to the Vega area can also enjoy ice-fishing at the state park, and cross-country skiing on a 2.32-mile in-park trail. Of course, anywhere there is a hill can be a great place to enjoy sledding.

Snowmobiling on Grand Mesa

Those who think they’d enjoy the backcountry snowmobiling experience but would like confirmation before making an offer on a cabin, may want to check out Thunder Mountain Lodge, near Ward Lake on Grand Mesa, which has both snowmobile and cabin rentals. Jeff Kieper, who bought the lodge three years ago, also offers guided tours of the area for those who are unfamiliar with the backcountry routes.

Vega Lodge, Grand Mesa Lodge, Alexander Lake Lodge, and Mesa Lakes Lodge also offer year-round cabins.


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Want to live close to recreation and agriculture? Head west to Loma and Mack

2018-08-15 22:25:19 hbanwco_77dnth

At Home-ah in Loma

By Penny Stine

Loma and Mack Agricultural Land

The west end of the Grand Valley is a great place for people who want an agricultural lifestyle or who simply want to be out in the country, away from noise, neighbors, and traffic. Loma and Mack are home to few urban or suburban conveniences, although there was recently a planning hearing for a new 300-foot cell tower north of Loma that could improve telecommunications to residents in the Lower Valley. Loma has a school, a post office, and a general store, while Mack has a liquor store and a post office. Loma is also home to the Western Slope Cattlemen’s Auction, although that isn’t exactly a suburban amenity.

Loma does, however, have a food truck, which is pretty urban for the laid-back farm community. Of course, the food truck serves barbecue, offering traditional offerings like ribs, brisket, pulled pork, smoked chicken and all the traditional sides.

“I live out there,” said Beth Burt, who operates Double B Barbecue and first set up her barbecue trailer at the Western Slope Cattlemen’s Auction on Wednesdays during the auctions while the restaurant was closed. “I developed a Loma following.”

Lifestyle in Loma - BBQ Food Truck

Burt has been operating at the Loma Country Store Thursdays through Sundays since April, and she’s pleased with the amount of business she’s had.

“I’m meeting so many different people,” she said. “It’s funny how much traffic is through that little place.”

Although the urban amenities in Loma might be lacking, there’s no shortage of recreational opportunities. Loma is home to the famous Fruita mountain biking trails at Horsethief Bench, which have garnered Fruita a world-class reputation for mountain biking, even though the trails are in Loma. A majority of the riders in the area are from out-of-the-area in the spring and fall, but this time of year, it’s mostly locals who go out and ride early in the morning before the heat makes it unbearable. According to statistics from the BLM, there were 58,000 people visiting the Kokopelli trailhead in 2017.

The city of Fruita is currently building a bike trail that connects the Colorado Riverfront Trail system from where it currently stops in Fruita to Loma. The trail is paved, with a single track trail running roughly parallel to the paved portion for mountain bikers who are in Fruita and want to ride to the trails. The opening of the trail has been delayed due to various construction issues, but the final bridge over Reed wash is scheduled to be built on Aug. 1, and the trail should be open to mountain bikers and road bicyclists the following week.

Loma is also home to Highline Lake, which is a refreshing, nearby place for locals to go for boating, fishing, paddle boarding or swimming, especially this time of year when the heat is relentless. Those who prefer their water recreation on a river can also find adventure in Loma, where there’s a boat launch on the Colorado River that takes adventurers on the 25-mile, Ruby-Horsethief section of the river to Westwater, Utah. Thanks to the permitting system for campsites, the BLM is able to track the number of people who float that section of the river, as well as where they’re coming from. In 2017, 21,000 people came through that section of the river, and according to Collin Ewing with the BLM, about 85 percent of them are from outside Mesa County.

Real estate in Loma and Mack is selling, although not as briskly as in other parts of the Grand Valley where buyers can find 2,000-square foot homes in neighborhoods full of other, similarly priced homes. Because the tiny Mack sewer system is not accepting new taps and there is no sewer system for Loma, most available tracts of land or properties for sale come with acreage. Some are small acreage parcels of one to five acres, and others are larger parcels with hundreds of acres that are used strictly for agricultural production.

“Hay prices have doubled in the last year,” said Mandy Rush, a RE/MAX 4000 agent who handles many horse and agricultural properties across the Grand Valley. “There’s a lot more interest now than in past years in productive farm ground. So much farm ground in the north and in Fruita has been developed; if you want a large parcel of farm ground, you have to go to Loma and Mack.”

Rush has a Mack property with 295 acres in six parcels, with a shop and utilities, as well as gated pipe and pivot irrigation that’s currently in grass alfalfa hay production. The property has been on the market for about three months, and she’s already received three offers on it, although none of them have been accepted at this point.

The drought and fires in many hay-producing areas across the western United States have led to increased hay prices, which Rush said has been good for agriculture in the Lower Valley.

“It’s brought attention to the importance of maintaining our agriculturally productive land,” she said. “There’s importance and value in farm ground.”

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Home on Little Park Road blends in and stands out

2018-07-23 21:24:09 hbanwco_77dnth

Part of the Landscape

Glade Park view

Those who are looking for a home that doesn’t sit on a cul-de-sac filled with similar-looking homes on manicured lots that could be in Anytown, U.S.A. might be interested in this week’s unique property at 164 Little Park Road. The home, which fits in beautifully with the surrounding desert landscape, wouldn’t look appropriate anywhere else. The exterior is true adobe and rock, and many of the rocks that are part of the house, the patio or the surrounding walkways were pulled from the ground on which the house sits.

Although the home borrows a few Santa Fe style touches, like Saltillo tile flooring in the common areas and lathe and plaster interior walls painted in bright colors, it’s a true Grand Valley marvel. Built more than 60 years ago, the home has been meticulously maintained and treasured, and its age adds to the home’s character and style.

Glade Park Casita

In addition to the main house, which has three bedrooms and two baths in more than 3,000 square feet, there are four casitas on the 3.75-acre property. One is a complete guest house, with a small kitchenette, a full bathroom and an open living/bedroom. Another is an artist studio, while the third casita is a playhouse and the fourth is used for tool storage. The casitas are all stone with wood accents, and they all look like historic structures that should be in a national forest somewhere in the southwest, as they’re surrounded by cacti, pinions and junipers.

The inside of the home is as unique as the outside, with architectural finishes and amenities that would simply be too costly to replicate today. The interior walls that aren’t lathe and plaster are stone, rustic wood or metal. The ceilings are a gray-toned aspen plank that has aged marvelously, while the floor in the living area is flagstone.

The views from the living window are also impossible to replicate. Sitting above the Grand Valley off Little Park Road, the northern walls of the living area are all windows, with views that start in Palisade and run all the way to Mack. Because of the home’s unique position almost right next to Colorado National Monument, it has views of that, too.

The kitchen has bright tile countertops, an island with a sink and storage, great cabinetry and top-of-the-line stainless steel appliances, including a six-burner Wolf range. There’s a small, informal eating area next to the kitchen, and a larger, more formal dining area off the main living room.

The home has several fireplaces, including a large rock fireplace that serves as a partial wall separating the living area from a smaller, private sitting area. The living room also has access to the patio on the back side of the house, which features those same fabulous views, along with room for a table, two built-in barbecues, and a wood-burning stove. There’s also a stone walkway along the entire back of the house, with access doors to the master bedroom, the man cave, and the wine cellar.

The master bedroom is large, with a unique master bath that includes a sunken, traditional Japanese-style bathtub. The man cave, which is large enough for a pool table and an office suite, shares a wall with the master suite but must be accessed from the outside door. Likewise, the climate-controlled wine cellar, which shares a wall on the opposite side of the house with the private sitting area, must also be accessed from the outside.

The house has evaporative cooling and baseboard hot water heat, but the thick adobe and stone exterior walls tend to keep the interior of the house at a fairly moderate temperature, regardless of what the weather is outside.

Craig Huckaby with Bray Real Estate is listing this unique desert home for $699,000. There is no sign on the property, and the house is impossible to see from Little Park Road, but interested buyers are welcome to call the Huckaby Team at 970-640-9918.

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Loma property offers great spaces for family, horses, hobbies

2018-07-13 18:45:49 hbanwco_77dnth

Loma Living

Anyone who is looking for a true horse property that already has a barn, corrals, pasture and a shop should take a second or third look at this weekend’s unique property in Loma. Especially if those potential buyers also want a beautiful house with plenty of room, a swimming pool and beautiful views of the area.

The five-acre property, at 1366 13 3/10 Road, is convenient to the freeway without being within earshot or on a main road. It has great views of Colorado National Monument and the Bookcliffs, with established landscape, outbuildings and room for everyone in the 2,924-square foot home.

The home has great Santa Fe-style outdoor and indoor features, with a sunny front courtyard, vigas, stucco and wood accents outside. Inside, the tile and wood flooring in the kitchen and common areas, along with the large log ceiling details, knotty alder doors and faux paint on the walls add to the rustic Santa Fe charm.

Loma Horse Property

The home has four bedrooms, with the master suite encompassing the entire upstairs. The master suite has access to two covered balconies, as well as an enormous five-piece master bath with a steam shower for two, and two master closets. Two of the downstairs bedrooms are on one side of the house, and the fourth bedroom is off the garage, with a door to the garage and an outside access door, making it good for a home office, a private guest room or a studio.

There are plenty of storage closets in the home, too, with an extra deep closet under the stairs in the entryway, an oversized storage closet in the fourth bedroom and cabinetry and storage in the laundry room.

The kitchen has tile flooring and granite countertops, with a bar area offering seating for four. There are good workspaces and cabinetry, as well as a walk-in pantry to offer plenty of storage. The dining area is off the kitchen, as is the home’s game room, which is large enough for a pool table and has a wet bar. The living room is on the back of the house, with a custom faux-painted wall and access to the backyard.

The backyard offers an incredible retreat on hot summer days, thanks to the large pool and patio areas. The pool has both a water slide and a volleyball net, and there’s room for multiple patio tables, lounge chairs, and barbecues on the patios. The hot tub offers a nice way to enjoy the space when it’s not warm enough to swim in the pool.

The shop has a finished room in the front of the shop, which could be office space or an exercise room. It also has extra tall ceilings for an over-sized RV, and there’s an upstairs loft area for more storage. The shop also has workspaces and extra cabinetry.

The barn is simply beautiful, with custom wood paneling inside. The loft offers nice storage or a convenient nook for playing poker, with good lighting and ventilation. There’s room for four stalls downstairs, with doors that open to the outside pen areas. While most barns, this one included, can be used for animals, this particular barn would make a nice wedding venue, which is not the case with every barn.

There are a couple of fenced, irrigated pastures on the property, as well as corrals next to the barn. There’s plenty of room for recreational vehicles, horse trailers or other toys on the property.

Mandy Rush with RE/MAX 4000 is listing this versatile Loma property for $749,000.

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New subdivision is the result of many local subcontractors

2018-06-25 20:40:30 hbanwco_77dnth

Infrastructure is almost complete at Fox Meadows, home construction should start in about a month. The development is 37-lots on D-1/2 Road, less than a quarter mile from Chatfield Elementary School.

Fox Meadows is the result of many local subcontractors

By Penny Stine

Fox Meadows, a new subdivision off D 1/2 Road west of 32 Road, is almost ready for home construction. Grand Junction Real Estate Investments has developed the 37-lot neighborhood, with the help of several other local subcontractors.

“This was truly a joint effort by some of the best subcontractors in the Grand Valley,” said Steve Voytilla with Grand Junction Real Estate Investments, who wanted to give credit and kudos to Poundstone Construction, which installed the water and sewer infrastructure, CW Construction, which did the pit run and road base, Adcock Concrete, which installed the sidewalks, Martin Construction, which installed the asphalt, and United Companies, the material provider for the concrete and asphalt.

Fox Meadows kitchen

“I like to use several smaller subcontractors,” Voytilla said, adding that the workmanship provided by all the companies was exceptional. He was also impressed with the equipment and technical expertise offered by CW Construction. “They’re a local company, run by two young brothers. All their equipment is GPS-guided, top-notch.”

The photo of the kitchen is of Pear Park North homes, that worn multiple awards in 2017 Parade of Homes and this house uses the same floor plan as will be used in Fox Meadows.

Voytilla’s construction company, GJ Home Builders, will be the exclusive home builder in the neighborhood. Although he doesn’t expect to start construction of the first homes at Fox Meadows until the first of July, he already has one pre-sold in the neighborhood. He plans to start spec homes, starting a new foundation every week throughout the remainder of the summer.

Voytilla plans to build homes using the same floor plans he used at Pear Park North, a 68-lot subdivision he started building in 2016 and continued throughout 2017.

“At Pear Park, we’ve built 30 homes in the last year,” Voytilla said. “I would never have guessed at how quickly Pear Park sold.”

There is still one filing left at Pear Park North, where GJ Home Builders will continue building homes while it starts building at Fox Meadows. Voytilla entered a home in Pear Park North in the 2017 Parade of Homes to help bring more awareness of the neighborhood to buyers.

Fox Meadows House

“It won every award in its price category in 2017,” Voytilla said. “There was not a single upgrade in that Parade home. Everything in it was standard.”

All of the features and finishes that people love in the Pear Park homes will be used in the homes at Fox Meadows. Homes will have stucco and stone exteriors, with architectural shingles on the roof. Upgraded cabinetry and granite countertops are also standard.

The homes at Fox Meadows will have either three or four bedrooms, and some three-bedroom homes will have three-car garages. The four-bedroom floor plans all have three bedrooms. Homes take 90 days to complete, so those who make reservations now through Ben Hill with Hill and Homes Real Estate could be moving into their new home by Thanksgiving.

There is irrigation water available in the neighborhood, which will be a great benefit to homeowners, as the lot sizes are a bit deeper than typical new subdivisions. Most of the lots are between 60 and 65 feet wide, and about 115 feet deep. Home sizes will range from 1,520 to 1,750 square feet, with prices ranging from $259,900 to $285,000. The neighborhood is less than a quarter-mile away from Chatfield Elementary School, making it a good option for families.

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