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Black Canyon Ranch: a Rocky Mountain cabin vibe

With majestic landscapes reminiscent of Montana

The main house’s vibe: country cabin, but five times bigger.
The main house’s vibe: country cabin, but five times bigger.

The calendar has turned to December, and the days are getting colder. Well, some days anyhow. They’re definitely getting shorter. Winter is coming, and with it, the handful of chances Eastern San Diego County gets every year for a dusting of snow. Let’s head up into the Laguna Mountains, shall we?

Cruise east on the 78 past Ramona and through the tiny town of Santa Ysabel. Normally, you’d dive south here to reach the mountain tourist hotspot of Julian, with its weekend traffic backed up for miles to get into the downtown filled with old-timey bakeries, cafes, and kitsch shops celebrating days gone by. Instead, we’re going to head north, pushing into the back country until we reach Black Canyon Ranch at 25335 Mesa Grande Road.

Described in its realtor.com listing as a “sprawling 560+ acres surrounded by majestic landscapes reminiscent of Montana,” this is “a true working ranch with cattle, gardens, greenhouse, workshop and barn.” There are also four “gorgeous residential homes,” three wells, four ponds, an airplane hangar, and more contained within the massive spread of land.

The 500-square-foot master bedroom, equipped with pot-bellied stove and a workspace with a view.

Overall, there are nearly 15,000 square feet of improved living area on the ranch, but we’re here for the luxury, so let’s start with the 7500-square-foot main residence, with its five bedrooms and six baths. The first listing photo shows us a fire roaring in the mammoth stone living room fireplace, along with a wall of windows looking out upon a dying sunset. The rough-hewn exposed roofing trusses are a nice touch and add to the Rocky Mountain cabin vibe already very much present. The next look we get is of the towering double-door entryway, again with exposed trusses — but this time they’re sporting a yellow underglow, the sort you might expect to see radiating from beneath a teenager’s modified car. I’ll leave it to readers to decide whether this is charming or tacky.

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A few more atmosphere shots confirm that we’ve got a nice view of Lake Henshaw from our hilltop perch, and then we’re back inside. To establish just how large the living room is, we get extra shots showing that besides the double-sized fireplace with the giant couch sectional, there’s still room for a conversation set in one corner, a grand piano in another, and a fully-stocked four-seat bar in a third. In addition to a formal dining room showing off an exterior rock wall and wide-beam plank flooring (plus one of several mounted deer busts), the kitchen includes enough space for another full-sized dining set, encircled by a double-farmhouse sink, commercial grade range and refrigerator, and more fancy stonework. It’s notable that there are no upper cabinets in most of the kitchen, but the sheer size of the space means your pots and pans will probably fit fine under the counter anyway.

The main bedroom has a potbelly stove in one corner, plus plenty of room in its 500 square feet of living space for a sitting area at the foot of the bed and desk space in a corner overlooking the canyons below. The bathroom features dual vanities set against opposite walls and a freestanding copper soaking tub in its own niche, accented by a chandelier and picture windows.

Honestly, these bedrooms are beginning to blend together. They’re all spacious, and they continue to hammer home the “country cabin, but five times bigger” vibe. Let’s move on, because we need to talk about the office. Rich, deep wood covers this room, from the coffered ceilings to the built-in bookshelves and cabinetry to the centerpiece desk that has to weigh more than a thousand pounds and should probably stay behind because it matches the room and would be very hard to move. The bronze eagle clutching a pair of arrows (like our country’s Great Seal depicting war and peace, but minus the olive branches of peace) indicates this is a serious room for conducting the serious war of business (or business of war). It feels like major treaties or contracts should be negotiated in this room, perhaps over a snifter or three of fine brandy.

Moving on, we leave the main house through an open game room with pool table and one corner fashioned into a home theater, with a loft above containing several bunks.

From there, we seem to transition to another residence, with a bath lined in either wood or some very convincing wood-look tile — for longevity’s sake, let’s hope it’s the latter. Elaborate Victorian wallpapers seem to be the theme of this house, as we see them in a pair of bedrooms and another bath.

From here, the photos get confusing. The listing tells us that in addition to the main house, there’s a detached studio, a one-bedroom “manager’s house,” a 2900-square-foot two-bed, two-bath “club house,” an 1800-square-foot one-bedroom “guest house,” and a “480-square-foot, 1.5 bath Other.” They all look very nice, and the outdoor kitchen/patio even includes what appears to be a wood-fired pizza oven. More shots include a private tennis court, what appears to be a detached wine-tasting barn, and a hangar that can hold either four planes or three helicopters adjacent to the private landing strip.

All of this, and we haven’t even gotten to any of the “working ranch” aspects of Black Canyon Ranch. There is surely a herd of cattle around here somewhere, and with the three wells, there have got to be some agricultural operations ongoing as well. But 560 acres is a lot to take in. Let’s come back when those snows arrive and look for a nice sledding hill.

Public records indicate that the Ranch is owned by the Taylor family, which purchased it for a reported $2.1 million in 2013, before the current estate’s effective build date of 2017. The Taylors have also reportedly purchased and renovated historic property in the rural San Diego area. Black Canyon Ranch was listed for sale in early November. Its asking price of $10,950,000 remains unchanged to date.

  • 25335 Mesa Grande | Santa Ysabel, 92070
  • Current Owner: The Taylor Family | Listing Price: $10,950,000 | Beds: 12 | Baths: 17 | House Size: 7500 (main house), 15,000 (total)
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The main house’s vibe: country cabin, but five times bigger.
The main house’s vibe: country cabin, but five times bigger.

The calendar has turned to December, and the days are getting colder. Well, some days anyhow. They’re definitely getting shorter. Winter is coming, and with it, the handful of chances Eastern San Diego County gets every year for a dusting of snow. Let’s head up into the Laguna Mountains, shall we?

Cruise east on the 78 past Ramona and through the tiny town of Santa Ysabel. Normally, you’d dive south here to reach the mountain tourist hotspot of Julian, with its weekend traffic backed up for miles to get into the downtown filled with old-timey bakeries, cafes, and kitsch shops celebrating days gone by. Instead, we’re going to head north, pushing into the back country until we reach Black Canyon Ranch at 25335 Mesa Grande Road.

Described in its realtor.com listing as a “sprawling 560+ acres surrounded by majestic landscapes reminiscent of Montana,” this is “a true working ranch with cattle, gardens, greenhouse, workshop and barn.” There are also four “gorgeous residential homes,” three wells, four ponds, an airplane hangar, and more contained within the massive spread of land.

The 500-square-foot master bedroom, equipped with pot-bellied stove and a workspace with a view.

Overall, there are nearly 15,000 square feet of improved living area on the ranch, but we’re here for the luxury, so let’s start with the 7500-square-foot main residence, with its five bedrooms and six baths. The first listing photo shows us a fire roaring in the mammoth stone living room fireplace, along with a wall of windows looking out upon a dying sunset. The rough-hewn exposed roofing trusses are a nice touch and add to the Rocky Mountain cabin vibe already very much present. The next look we get is of the towering double-door entryway, again with exposed trusses — but this time they’re sporting a yellow underglow, the sort you might expect to see radiating from beneath a teenager’s modified car. I’ll leave it to readers to decide whether this is charming or tacky.

Sponsored
Sponsored

A few more atmosphere shots confirm that we’ve got a nice view of Lake Henshaw from our hilltop perch, and then we’re back inside. To establish just how large the living room is, we get extra shots showing that besides the double-sized fireplace with the giant couch sectional, there’s still room for a conversation set in one corner, a grand piano in another, and a fully-stocked four-seat bar in a third. In addition to a formal dining room showing off an exterior rock wall and wide-beam plank flooring (plus one of several mounted deer busts), the kitchen includes enough space for another full-sized dining set, encircled by a double-farmhouse sink, commercial grade range and refrigerator, and more fancy stonework. It’s notable that there are no upper cabinets in most of the kitchen, but the sheer size of the space means your pots and pans will probably fit fine under the counter anyway.

The main bedroom has a potbelly stove in one corner, plus plenty of room in its 500 square feet of living space for a sitting area at the foot of the bed and desk space in a corner overlooking the canyons below. The bathroom features dual vanities set against opposite walls and a freestanding copper soaking tub in its own niche, accented by a chandelier and picture windows.

Honestly, these bedrooms are beginning to blend together. They’re all spacious, and they continue to hammer home the “country cabin, but five times bigger” vibe. Let’s move on, because we need to talk about the office. Rich, deep wood covers this room, from the coffered ceilings to the built-in bookshelves and cabinetry to the centerpiece desk that has to weigh more than a thousand pounds and should probably stay behind because it matches the room and would be very hard to move. The bronze eagle clutching a pair of arrows (like our country’s Great Seal depicting war and peace, but minus the olive branches of peace) indicates this is a serious room for conducting the serious war of business (or business of war). It feels like major treaties or contracts should be negotiated in this room, perhaps over a snifter or three of fine brandy.

Moving on, we leave the main house through an open game room with pool table and one corner fashioned into a home theater, with a loft above containing several bunks.

From there, we seem to transition to another residence, with a bath lined in either wood or some very convincing wood-look tile — for longevity’s sake, let’s hope it’s the latter. Elaborate Victorian wallpapers seem to be the theme of this house, as we see them in a pair of bedrooms and another bath.

From here, the photos get confusing. The listing tells us that in addition to the main house, there’s a detached studio, a one-bedroom “manager’s house,” a 2900-square-foot two-bed, two-bath “club house,” an 1800-square-foot one-bedroom “guest house,” and a “480-square-foot, 1.5 bath Other.” They all look very nice, and the outdoor kitchen/patio even includes what appears to be a wood-fired pizza oven. More shots include a private tennis court, what appears to be a detached wine-tasting barn, and a hangar that can hold either four planes or three helicopters adjacent to the private landing strip.

All of this, and we haven’t even gotten to any of the “working ranch” aspects of Black Canyon Ranch. There is surely a herd of cattle around here somewhere, and with the three wells, there have got to be some agricultural operations ongoing as well. But 560 acres is a lot to take in. Let’s come back when those snows arrive and look for a nice sledding hill.

Public records indicate that the Ranch is owned by the Taylor family, which purchased it for a reported $2.1 million in 2013, before the current estate’s effective build date of 2017. The Taylors have also reportedly purchased and renovated historic property in the rural San Diego area. Black Canyon Ranch was listed for sale in early November. Its asking price of $10,950,000 remains unchanged to date.

  • 25335 Mesa Grande | Santa Ysabel, 92070
  • Current Owner: The Taylor Family | Listing Price: $10,950,000 | Beds: 12 | Baths: 17 | House Size: 7500 (main house), 15,000 (total)
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