Home / Stories / Story Info
Water auction: Mojave ranch with water rights to be offered at auction
Oasis Ranch, a rare 640-acre ranch with water rights in the Mojave Desert, will be offered at auction Thursday, Feb. 28.
"This land is at the mouth of the Black Canyon Watershed, in an area historically known as Water Valley. The area has few if any wells north of Oasis Ranch in the Black Mountain Wilderness Area," said Gene Klingaman, executive vice president of Schrader Real Estate and Auction Company, which is marketing the property and will manage the auction.
The property is in San Bernardino County, 65 miles north of San Bernardino.
"Oasis Ranch was developed by Curt Jahnke into a profitable alfafa operation, with five wells producing an estimated 10,000 acre feet of water per year. Due to family health issues, Mr. Jahnke discontinued operations in 2006, and he has decided it is time to sell the land, including surface rights, mineral, oil, solar and first tier water rights," said water attorney James L. Markman.
Markman said the water can be transported off site and that the amount of water that can be produced is limited only by sustainable availability. "Water consultants have estimated that the property can produce 20,000 to 30,000 acre feet per year. With no wells to the north, this land has an excellent recharge rate," said Markman.
The first 10,000 acre feet of water per year will be included in the bid price. The purchase price for the remainder of the water rights will be based on the buyer's actual water production over and above 10,000 acre feet per year. "We believe this will be attractive to water districts, investors, water brokers and others," said Markman.
The auction will begin at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, at Bacara Resort, 8301 Hollister Avenue, Santa Barbara.