Fay Ranches proudly presents Swanson’s Apple Orchard, located in the foothills of the Saphire Mountain Range. The ranch spans approximately 426± acres of hay ground, pastures, and a productive apple orchard. The Swanson’s have called this ranch home for over four generations, where they taught their kids the value of hard work and the rewards of “land stewardship.” Their children learned if you take care of the land, it will provide a bountiful harvest.
The apple orchard covers approximately 30± acres, and the Swanson’s brand is well-known in Western Montana. There is plenty of room to expand the orchard and increase production. The orchard produces several varieties of apples: Macintosh, Empire, Spartan, Snow-Sweet, and Golden Delicious. The business has built a reputation for producing high-quality apples that are sweet and crisp. The 7,500± square foot warehouse provides ample space to store fruit, meet customers, package fruit for shipment, and load commercial trucks. There are two refrigerated cold storage rooms in the warehouse, and the 1,440± square foot area provides enough room to keep the fruit cool and crisp.
Historically, the ranch provided enough grass to sustain 125± cow/calf pairs. The Bitterroot Irrigation District provides approximately 70 miners inches of water, which is enough to irrigate approximately 180± acres. The water is supplied from the “big ditch,” situated to the east above the ranch. The elevation drop provides enough pressure to operate wheel lines without the cost of running an irrigation pump. Out of the 180± irrigated acres, there are approximately 120± acres dedicated to hay production, 30± acres of apple orchard, and the remaining 30± acres is pasture. Currently, the ranch produces approximately 350± tons of grass/alfalfa hay annually.
There are three residences on the orchard/ranch, which are in good condition and provide revenue or employee housing. Take a step back into yesteryear when the morning light touches two vintage barns and imagine a time when the west was young and wild. Multiple other out-buildings provide ample space to store tractors and farming equipment.