JE Canyon is home to more than 850 species of plants and animals, including bear, elk, mule deer, and Colorado’s largest private herd of Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep.
“Jerry Wenger, the seller of JE Canyon, was an extraordinary steward and is truly leaving a legacy,” said listing broker Ken Mirr of Mirr Ranch Group. “Mirr Ranch Group has always sought a conservation-minded buyer for this property, and found the ultimate conservation buyer in TNC. We thank everyone at TNC for making this happen and look forward to protecting more working ranches in the future.”
Although parts of JE Canyon Ranch are protected by a conservation easement, The Nature Conservancy plans to place the entire ranch under a conservation easement and is working with Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust on those steps. Once the easement is in place, identifying a conservation-minded buyer will be the next step.
“The goal is to get it back into private hands,” said Matt Moorhead at The Nature Conservancy. “In the meantime, we’re looking to experiment with grazing, forestry, and hydrologic management, taking risks most landowners couldn’t.”
Moorhead added, “This area defines Colorado with its natural, historical, and cultural heritage, yet many people are unaware of its significance,” Moorhead said. “Thanks to generations of careful land management by private landowners and ranchers in this community, the land as well as its rich history and traditions have been conserved.”
The Land Report 2015 Ranchland Deal of the Year: JE Canyon Ranch in Las Animas County, Colorado
Seller: JE Canyon Ranch LLC
Corwin Brown, Corwin Brown & Associates
Ken Mirr, Mirr Ranch Group
Buyer: The Nature Conservancy
Buyer’s Broker: Ken Mirr, Mirr Ranch Group