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The cabin we call THE WINTER PALACE is our most cozy, luxurious one. Its name originated one big winter when it kept us warm and toasty during a run of 20 below weather.
The LIVING ROOM has a cushy recliner, a hand-made rocking chair, and a full-size super comfy couch with matching pillows in American Indian motif. There is a modern, windowed wood-stove and a hand-made desk with mirror and table lamp. Etchings and lithographs adorn the walls and bookshelves are loaded with good books. Tall, old-fashioned, handmade windows give plenty of light and great views of the wild mountains and a chandelier and kerosene lamps warm your nights.
The KITCHEN has a new electric range and oven and an ample refrigerator and microwave. A vintage pie safe contains a complete set of cups, glasses, dishes and bowls, and a full set of cutlery. Pots, pans and skillets, a chopping board, and a variety of utensils are ready to use along with a set of knives, a coffee maker, and an espresso unit. There are twin sinks, cupboards for storage, and a table for four with straight back chairs.
The BEDROOM is a rustic charmer with two Queen beds with luxurious mattresses, crisp linens, warm blankets and down comforters. It has a sturdy woodstove, a chest of drawers, and a built-in closet for clothing.
The BATHROOM has a glass enclosed shower, a toilet, a sink with cabinet and mirror, a full-size storage cabinet, and a ventilation window.
The GYM has a Universal exercise machine, a free weight set, and a bench.
Our SAUNA is a point of pride, with a woodstove heater and polished oak benches that easily seat six. It has an insulated ceiling paneled in cedar, an air-tight double-paned window and electric light. The floor is masoned mica schist as is the wall behind the exhaust chimney. It's the height of luxury on cool evenings.
All rooms are carpeted, or have decorative rugs, or both. Windows are snugly fitted and can be opened as desired. Log walls are clean and polished and the roof is insulated to be cool in summer and warm in winter.
Two luxuriously comfortable queen beds grace this delightful bedroom. There is a large closet for clothing, a rocking chair for reading, a wood stove, and a chest of drawers for anything else....moreless
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The ranch, on The Rocky Mountain Front under soaring Castle Reef and Sawtooth Mountain, is near the Sun River trailhead entry to the spectacular Bob Marshall Wilderness.
The wild country all around us is as Lewis and Clark found it. Biologists call it The American Serengeti. Every animal and bird that they saw still lives here, free and wild, excepting only the buffalo. Elk roam our hills and calve on the adjacent Sun River Game Range, and grizzly forage through in Spring and Fall. Black bear and mountain lion roam and den in the forest around us, and both Whitetail and Mule deer abound. Despite the shameful de-listing of the wolf, our mountains aree refuge for them and their calls are still heard in our back country.
The property is bounded on the north by the Sun River--a Blue Ribbon Trout Stream--home to big Rainbows and lunker Browns as well as beaver, Canada Geese and many water birds.
Bluebirds nest here in Spring and four species of hummingbirds spend the summer, as do Swifts and Swallows. Golden and Bald eagles hunt the prairies and fish the rivers and lakes.
Year Purchased: 1991
About the owner: Paul and Helen Edwards, and our son Jason, own the ranch and the five pioneer-built log cabins. For most of the year we’re at the Ranch or at our home in Helena and can be reached for reservations at one or the other.
Why the Owner Chose Augusta: It had always been my dream as a writer to have a place in the Wild Rockies as far from the turmoil of urban madness as possible. We scoured Northwest Montana and, having seen a couple of dozen remarkable properties, knew this was the one for us. It has been all we hoped for and more, and every day at Stecker Ranch nourishes our spirits.
The Unique Benefits at this Cabin: The ranch is on the Sun River, directly below the soaring crags and ramparts of the Rocky Mountain Front. Our cabins, surrounded by Doug Fir and Limber Pine forest, are in de facto wilderness where grizzly forage and elk bugle in the rut, and Canada geese make sky music in the fall. The confusion and cares of modern city life are far away and there are no neighbors. At the ranch you feel the joy, peace and serenity of true wild country, and you might imagine that you are living in the land as it was when only the Blackfeet set their lodges here pursuing the vast herds of buffalo.