Jeff Davis County, Texas

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35+/- Acres

Location

Ranchito de los Sueños is located eight miles north of the town of Fort Davis in the Limpia Crossing Subdivision off Highway 118 North. The 35-acre property is a half mile from the main entrance of the subdivision down Olds Creek Drive, which right angles to Limpia Creek Drive, the road leading to the property entrance. Ranchito de los Sueños is in the heart of the Davis Mountains. The topography of the property varies from rolling hills to creekside flats and sheer bluffs. Volcanic rock formations are found throughout the property with rock sentinels providing natural barriers on several sides.

Acreage

35 acres in Fort Davis

History

From your very first step onto the property you are transported back to a period when Limpia Creek ran year round and wildlife was abundant. Apache and Comanche Indians traveled this country using the rock sentinels and boulder clusters to camouflage their movement and provide strategic cover during periods of rest and unrest. The numerous matates found in the boulders adjacent to the house speak to this period.  In the mid-19th century the military compound called Fort Davis was built and occupied as a protection for settlers and travelers. Later in the 19th and early 20th centuries, Jeff Davis County became a ranching center with cattlemen seeking land to raise and shelter their livestock. In 1860, the Crossons inhabited the rock cabin on this property near Limpia Creek which was the beginning of their experiences in this vast country. Today, four walls and the fireplace of the rock cabin remain standing. Times were dangerous and defensive positions important as evidenced by the rifle slits built into the four walls and corners of the cabin. The roof was grass at the time. As the 20th century progressed, Fort Davis grew as a ranching community and this property featured prominently during the cowboy period for the abundant grass and water provided by the creek. The boulders were shelter for camping and camp cooking. The present day windmill was erected in 1948 to draw water from the running creek and the active spring below. These features factor into the use of this property as a small ranch, personal retreat, historian’s delight and a place to reflect on the past and the pursuits of the present and ideas of the future.

Description

The acreage and rock sentinels surrounding the 1,800 square foot ranch home provide for a tranquil and serene environment to enjoy nature, the outdoors and the amazing dark skies. Thirteen varieties of oak trees are abundant on the property and McDonald Observatory is easily seen in the distance.

  • The home is situated on 7.5 acres.
  • Eleven acres to the north of the home plus 10 acres to the south/southwest and 5 acres to the east provide a privacy buffer from neighboring properties.
  •  An enchanting rock outcropping is visible from the home’s screened porch and contains matates worn into the natural rock.
  •  On the south side of the rock outcropping is the small pioneer rock cabin with runoff creek nearby. During the Crosson’s lifetime, this creek flowed continuously and provided refrigeration for their family and other families that followed.
  •  The terrain is level where the area designated as the cowboy camp or present day entertainment grove joins the north side of the natural rock out-cropping. This area includes a natural large rock, semi-circular fire pit, and rock encased food storage cooler or ice box for keeping drinks and watermelon ice cold.
  •  Adjacent to this area is a rock bath house with a large dressing area, two showers, a semi-finished soaking tub and compost toilet. A chuck box and kitchen sink are built into the rock wall on the outside of the bath house. A solar heated water tank provides warm to hot water for showering and washing dishes.
  •  There are active cold waterlines coming to the entertainment area from the main source of water, a 285-foot-deep water well, located close to the house.
  •  Olds Creek joins Limpia Creek in the mid-northwest corner of the property. Limpia Creek is the predominant creek on the property. When this land was part of a large ranch, cowboys used the near-by flats to tend their cattle. In 1888, Limpia Creek was a navigable water way; today it is a seasonal creek.
  •  A windmill dated 1948 can be activated to supply water to an adjacent large water trough using solar or wind power.
  • There are two additional rock walled outdoor toilets situated strategically around the property: near the pole barn and the rock cabin.
  •  The pole barn, with partial attic space, is enclosed with cattle panels and is adjacent to a water source and a two-acre fenced area perfect for a horse pen or containment of other animals. A securely fenced area designed as a vegetable garden is also available. Around the barn, two and a half acres are fenced with goat fencing and the wiring can be easily activated by solar-power.
  •  Water from the property’s main well is directed to the bath house and pole barn.

Home

  •  The ranch style home with open floor plan was constructed in 1983 with materials and construction crew brought in from Houston. In 2004 a great-room and large second full bath with soaking tub/shower were added to increase the home to a total of 1,800 square feet. Rock harvested from Limpia Creek is found throughout the exterior of the home. The foundation for the new bathroom was designed to support a future second floor addition.
  •  Large living area with Hearth Stone soapstone wood burning stove is appreciated for creating gentle long-lasting heat. Central heating is also available and was installed in 2004. Two evaporative coolers are located on each end of the house. Due to the coolness of the house in the summer the coolers are used periodically.
  •  Built-in birch storage cabinets strategically located throughout the home create clean minimalistic visual lines while providing abundant storage.
  •  Electric Wolf stovetop and Dacor convection oven and Frigidare refrigerator. A Bosch on demand hot water heater supplies plenty of hot water.
  •  Two baths: one with walk-in shower and newer tiled bath with copper sink, large soaking tub/shower and space to build out a spa or steam room.
  •  The garage, house and screened sleeping porch are completely wainscoted with creek rock and the house itself is stucco coated. The metal roof was installed in 2004.
  •  The screened sleeping porch faces east and the sloping roof and surrounding trees make it well sheltered from the sun. The home is positioned with the length of the home running north/south and the width east and west.
  •  The orientation of the home and the large sliding windows allow for the prevailing calm breezes from the south/southwest to flow unencumbered into the house and adds to the comfort of the screened in porch.
  •  Over-sized two car garage with partial attic space has built in birch storage closets and a work area. This building could be built-out as a guest casita.
  •  A coveted Madrone tree is located slightly north of the garage.

Improvements

• Pella double paned windows were installed in the home in 2013.
• 500 gallon propane tank generously handles the yearly gas needs of the house.
• Exterior hot and cold water faucet on south wall of master bathroom for bathing family animals or for an exterior shower.
• New septic tank was installed in 2018.
• Three separate electric main panels supply electricity to the house, garage and water well.
• Outdoor secure refuse bin provides containment for trash and garbage.

Wildlife

Wildlife is abundant in the Davis Mountains. Mule deer, white-tail deer, diverse bird species and smaller animals such as javelina, fox, ring tail cat, and the unusual Montezuma quail abound in this area. Hummingbirds and migrant songbirds fly through the area on semi-annual migrations and are attracted to the extensive native plants making this a birding paradise. Native trees, brush and grasses provide excellent habitat for these native wildlife species. Surrounded by nature, one can pursue activities like photography, astronomy, hiking, painting, or meditation by simply walking out the door.

This property represents a journey through several stages of the past, experiences of the present with prospects into the future.