Our Environment

Wilson Ranch is located at the confluence of Early Winters Creek and the Methow River in the Methow Valley. The Ranch is situated at an elevation of 2,100 feet at the foot of the North Cascade Mountains. We are immediately adjacent to the North Cascade Scenic Highway 20 and only a mile from the small town of Mazama. The old west town of Winthrop is 16 miles down valley from Wilson Ranch. We are also immediately adjacent to the Okanogan National Forest.

Climatic Zone
The high altitude creates large daily temperature variations; during summer months, variations of as much as 40 degrees are common. The humidity is generally very low, especially during the snowy winter months. Seasonal snowfall ranges from 10 to 15 feet per year, with short-term accumulations of four feet occurring often. The high Cascades west of Wilson Ranch greatly affect the area’s climate. Average annual precipitation at Wilson Ranch is about 24 inches. Annual cumulative snowfall averages 10 to 15 feet per year, which represents 80 percent of the total moisture. Approximately 80 percent of the precipitation occurs during the five-month period of November through March. Summers are characterized by long dry periods, warm days, and cool nights.

Wilson Ranch is located in a very unique landscape. It is located in the Intermountain transition zone between the North Cascade Mountains, the Columbia River Basin, and the Cascade Mountain Range, an alpine region that protects Wilson Ranch from moisture laden Pacific storms.

Environmental and Community Leadership
At Wilson Ranch, we are committed to maintaining the natural character and quality of the area under our care. We are committed to living in balance with the ecosystem we share with both wild creatures and our human neighbors.

A Wilson Ranch priority is the long-term protection of clean air, clean water, sustainable wildlife habitat, and scenic vistas, as well as the protection of the rural lifestyle that characterizes the Methow Valley.

Here is how we seek to achieve harmony with our natural setting and how you can help.

Our activities

  • We conduct annual Firewise activities to ensure our land is defensible both for our protection and that of our neighbors.
  • Fishing in Freestone Lake is “catch and release, flies only”.
  • Wilson Ranch emphasizes non-motorized trail-based recreation on the property.
  • Central garbage and recycling is provided as is a community burn pile to consolidate yard waste.

Our planning and construction

  • Low volume timed watering and drip system irrigation is used on all landscaping
  • All buildings use energy efficient sustainable construction.
  • Open space for mule deer movement through the property is assured.
  • Drought tolerant native species are used on all disturbed sites and landscaping.
  • Buildings and site improvements blend with existing topographic forms and vegetation. Building materials have an indigenous character in terms of color, texture, lighting, and scale.
  • All buildings consider visually sensitive areas such as meadows and view corridors.
  • Natural appearing berms have been designed into the resort setting to limit noise and help maintain the visual values of the area.
  • Outdoor lights are designed to only illuminate small areas thus limiting the impact of light on the rural setting.
  • Buildings are designed to fit with the existing landscape and vegetation.
  • Construction meets standard wildfire protection guidelines.
  • All utility lines are underground.

Please help us in our commitment to live in balance with our environment.