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'A River Runs Through It' ranch in Montana listed for sale at $136M
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'A River Runs Through It' ranch in Montana listed for sale at $136M

Climbing Arrow Ranch

A creek runs through Climbing Arrow Ranch near Bozeman in this courtesy photo.

If you have $136 million to spend, you could own the Climbing Arrow Ranch near Bozeman, the setting for some of the scenes in the 1992 movie "A River Runs Through It."

The asking price is $136,250,000, according to a press release from the listing agency, Swan Land Co., of Bozeman.

The ranch, also known as CA Ranch, consists of five units totaling approximately 79,483 acres spanning four counties, including a commercial cattle and hay operation and hunting and fishing opportunities.

Climbing Arrow Ranch

A bridge on Climbing Arrow Ranch is pictured near Bozeman.

The trestle bridge leading into Eagle’s Nest tunnel served as a location in the film starring Brad Pitt. The Blackfoot River is portrayed by the Yellowstone, Gallatin and Boulder Rivers in the film, which are all within 30-60 minutes of the ranch.

The property borders Ted Turner’s Flying-D Ranch and Bar None Ranches about 30 miles outside Bozeman.

The ranch was created in 1905 and purchased by Buck and Marcia Anderson in 1959. The grandson of Frank B. Anderson, founder of the Bank of California, Buck brought his family to the ranch and expanded its holdings over 30 years. 

“Our family has had the great privilege of being the stewards of this beautiful ranch for over 60 years," a statement from the family read. "The remarkable vision and ambition of our parents to create the CA Ranch into what it is today gave us the exceptional opportunity to raise families in a western ranching lifestyle, within a tightly knit community of friends. We will cherish this for our lifetimes, and it can never be replaced. While we feel both pride and tribulation in this change, it is time to pass the reins to a new owner who will love and enjoy the ranch as much as we have.” 

Climbing Arrow Ranch

A pictograph is pictured on the Climbing Arrow Ranch.

Teepee rings and cave pictographs are evidence that Blackfeet and Crow tribes hunted, camped and traveled throughout what became the CA Ranch. The property contains the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad’s “Western Extension” route, built in the early 1900s. While the rails and ties have been removed, two signal lights remain in Sixteenmile Canyon as well as three tunnels.

Spread across Gallatin, Broadwater, Madison and Meagher counties, the property is organized into five ranch units: Francis, Valley, Hudson, Island and Logan. 

Climbing Arrow Ranch

A view of Climbing Arrow Ranch near Bozeman.

The property contains about five miles of frontage along the Madison River, and more than 17 miles of the North Fork and Middle Fork of Sixteenmile Creek (a tributary to the Missouri River). These waters contain rainbow and brown trout in the 12-inch to 18-inch range, some reaching the 20-inch benchmark, with reliable mayfly, caddis and stonefly hatches through spring and summer and terrestrial hatches in the fall. 

Climbing Arrow Outfitter, owner of the outfitter’s license and manager of elk hunting on the property, has attracted world-class caliber archery hunters seeking the six-point magnum bulls in the 350 class and greater on the Boone and Crockett scale; bulls as large as 397 have been taken from the nearly 1,500 head of elk that amass on the property during hunting season. The ranch sells up to 35 hunts per year to archery and rifle hunters. Cow elk, mule deer, white-tail deer, upland game birds and waterfowl hunting is also abundant on the ranch. 

The ranch is home to several employee residences, guest homes and an owner’s home as well as the historic Francis Barn, corrals, workshops, mechanic shops, horse corrals, sheds and horse barns, calving facilities and shipping corrals.

“We are honored to be the brokerage representing the Anderson family and this significant piece of Southwest Montana’s history,” said Mike Swan, owner and managing broker at Swan Land Company. “CA Ranch’s scale, production and unrivaled recreational amenities within minutes of Bozeman makes it truly unique in today’s high-end ranch real estate market.”

A list of the top 20 movies set in Montana.


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