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Rustic Elligence on a Working Ranch Vacation Resort With Lots of Water

Bedrooms 3
Property type house
Minimum Stay 3 nights

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Minimum Stay
3 nights


Mountain Home House Rental Photos and Description

Newly Renovated And Refurnished 3 Bedroom 3 Bath Creekside Residence

Check out the Riachuelo Ranch video Web Link

The Creek House is Rustic Elegance in Serene Seclusion with plenty to do and see. All very well furnished with more than you would expect to find in a five star hotel. Not just clean sheets soap and towels, but a kitchen pantry with and utensils that you would find in your own home. Just bring groceries and enjoy life. If you do not find what you need, just ask the owners and they can probably fill your request.

For even larger families and gatherings check out expanding to include our Lodge (Property # 573890)

Outside, we have a fire ring on solid rock alongside the creek with plenty of fire wood. There is plenty of seating on the patio as well as Lazy Boy chairs and dining on the deck. Naps anyone? Or just read from our large library or chat and listen to the waterfall and watch the children play in the creek. Then there is WiFi and CDs, but who wants to be inside?

The Creek House has recently been renovated and decorated in the Western Style. It has three bedrooms each with its own bath. Two bedrooms are located at opposite ends of the living area. The master bedroom has a King Size bed and the other bedroom features a Queen size Sleep Number bed, each have easy chairs and ample storage and closets.

The private Studio suite is just across a carport and has a queen size Sleep Number bed and a set of bunk beds. Kids of all ages will love this hideaway setup.

The spacious living/dining area has a rustic fireplace built of stones which were gathered off the ranch and there is plenty of firewood and comfortable seating. The dining table seats eight easily. and there is a four place round table just across the room that the kids may prefer.

There is a spacious shaded deck that overlooks the creek with a walkover bridge in a stone dam that backs up a small lake which flows out in a stepped waterfall. On the deck there is a gas brazer for outdoor cooking as well as a table and a number of chairs. There is a large flag stoned creek side patio right alongside the stream.

The ranch is our yard. We have 1200 acres that include woods and meadows and cliffs and canyons, a rock strewn spring fed stream with a number of lakes to explore. Animals abound and bird watching is one of our favorite sports. The hunting blinds are fed year around and just sitting in one of them in the evening and watching the deer of several species come feed is a rare treat. The wild turkeys roam at will and in the early spring they put on a real show.

We have hunters that occupy our Lodge in hunting season. The Lodge is a quarter of a mile upstream. The hunters are here mostly on long weekends in November and December. They also come up to just visit and tend the feeders at a dozen blinds about every six to eight weeks and are just like part of our family.

The Lodge (Property # 573890) is rented out for most of the year. Check it out if you need more space for a large group.

There is a first class shooting range with target boards at 5, 25, 50, 100 and 200 meters where visitors can sight in their guns or just try their hand at pistol, rifle or shotgun skills. We discourage plinking around in the pastures.

The naturally stocked lakes and ponds yield up plenty of fish. Black bass are put back if they are under 11 inches or over 15 inches. We are sure that many of the over 20 inch long bass have been caught a number of times. Eat all of the mid-sized bass, catfish and bluegills you are skilled enough to catch.

This is a hiking and bird watching enthusiasts delight. Don't forget to bring your cameras. You will want to take lots of pictures.

If you care to check out the Hill Country and the inclination, there are looping drives that you can take through the Hill Country back-roads and along the North and South forks of the Guadalupe River. Each little town has its share of unique eating places. In the spring wild flowers abound. Most people stay right here on the ranch.

Shoppers may want to explore quaint old Fredericksburg which is less than an hour away.

The land that is now Riachuelo Ranch was first settled by the Byas family thus Byas Springs and Byas Branch. We are told that their homestead porch rested on the rock walls that enclose the spring by the Lodge. There are still traces of midden rock in the area that attest to the fact that this spot was once an Indian tribes kitchen. The land has been passed down through many hands before ours.

In 1988 Bernard ended a five year Odyssey of sailing the high seas and came home to the Hill Country of Texas. He purchased parcels of land over the next three years totaling a little over 1,200 acres. A wild fire roared through the area around 1965. Where this fire swept, a swath of half burned cedar with a thick regrowth of sumac and cactus evolved. The rest of the land was covered with cedar and more cactus.

The first ten years were spent first studying what was to be done with this tangle of unproductive and mostly impenetrable land and then clearing the land in a premeditated sculpture leaving enough cedar brush for the wildlife to have cover and habitat and enough open space to grow the grass and leafy plants to feed them plus some domestic animals.

Over the years a hunting lodge and two very nice homes were built, one by the creek and one on top of a high bluff overlooking several lakes. Limestone cliffs give birth to natural springs that are the source that feeds the lakes and three thousand feet of lovely shaded stream through the ranch. Byas Branch flows on beyond our place into Johnson Creek and on to the Guadalupe River.

The property is divided into seven pastures designed to accommodate the handling of livestock. Over the years we have had sheep, horses and cattle but now we confine our livestock efforts to the raising of a clean line of badger faced black Spanish goats that are sold mostly to ethnic markets for their meat.

There is a horse ring, corral and tack room where guests can keep their horses between long rides through miles of woods and meadow land and be with nature to their hearts content. Then there are many who will enjoy just hiking or riding their ATVs.

A major portion of a lifetime has been devoted to making this into a place of natural beauty and now we want to share it with you. Help us by picking up every scrap of man's litter that you may come across, and be sure that you leave nothing behind.

Enjoy every minute of your stay.

More Details
  • Events Allowed
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters
  • children welcome
  • non smoking only
  • wheelchair accessible

Bernard Syfan
Member since: 2014
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
November 20, 2016
Call Owner

About Bernard Syfan

Bernard's family came to the Hill Country for vacations and weekends since his parents came here on their honeymoon in 1915 via train and buggy. He likes to say that he has been coming to the hills since before he was born and has spent the best part of his life here.

When he got out of business in California and came home from sailing for five years of sailing from Seattle to Turkey and back to the US it was to 'the hills' where his heart had always resided.

All of his family was here and his roving the world was put aside. He decided to settle down and be a rancher.

Bernard's grandfather established the first vacation subdivision in Kerr County on the Guadalupe river and his parents had their honeymoon there in 1915 after a three day train and buggy ride to 'the hills' as we always called it.

Bernard likes to say that he has been coming to the hills since before he was born which was in 1926. After a stint in the navy he graduated from Texas A&M with a BS in Civil Engineering, He worked as an engineer, builder and developer until 1983 when he went sailing on his five year Odyssey. When he came 'home' it was to 'the hills' where his heart had always resided.

Rosalie grew up in California & Oregon. In Beaverton, OR she took classes in appreciation of literature, worked as a hairdresser & taught dancing. She lived in the Los Angeles area for 42 yrs. Rosalie was president of the Hidden Hills Community Theater for four years and was instrumental in starting their children's theater program. She is a past president of the Valley Chapter of Jonsson Cancer Center Foundation, which raises seed money for cancer research at UCLA. She took classes at a local college & made the Deans list for three years. She also had a jewelry business for 20 yrs. In 2005 she moved to Kerrville, Texas where she met & married Bernard 2013. Her most recent accomplishment was publishing her book 'Destruction of Innocence', a memoir by Rosalie Hollingsworth is a must read.

Bernard Syfan purchased this house in 1986

Why Bernard Syfan chose Texas

Bernard picked this particular property because of its character, uniqueness and potential for conversion from a brush and cactus tangled old ranch into a self supporting, productive and park-like place of serene beauty.

The naturally stocked lakes and ponds yield up plenty of fish. Black bass are put back if they are under 11' or over 15'. We are sure that many of the over 20' bass have been caught a number of times. Eat all of the mid-sized bass, catfish and bluegills you are skilled enough to catch.

This is a hiking and bird watching enthusiasts delight. Don't forget to bring your cameras. You will want to take lots of pictures.

If you have time and the inclination, there are looping drives that you can take through the Hill Country back-roads and along the North and South forks of the Guadalupe River.

What makes this house unique

When you stay with us at our Creek House, you will experience living in a house that has all of the comforts of rustic elegance, but you will be in an atmosphere of quit serenity surrounded by nature where you can pick up a book or stroll along the creek or hike over miles of ranch roads. You can sit on the shaded deck and enjoy listening to the little waterfalls, or you can just be together with ones that you love in a place that you will never forget.


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(31 traveler reviews)

Rustic Elligence on a Working Ranch Vacation Resort With Lots of Water
average rating of 4.967742 based on 31 reviews

Family Fun Vacation

  • 5 of 5

Our family and friends enjoyed every aspect of this property. The creeks, the swimming hole, the shooting range and the out door camp fires. The kids had a blast and the weather was perfect! The Syfan's were very welcoming and accommodating - we definitely will be coming back!

  • Submitted: Oct 10, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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This is a great place for a relaxing time away from everything.

  • 5 of 5

Our family of 7 adults and a 2 ½ year old boy had a fantastic time at the ranch over Labor Day weekend. We explored the ranch on foot and on a 4 wheeler driven by Mr. Syfan. We also went swimming in the swimming hole and caught lots of perch and a few big bass (all released). We saw plenty of wildlife (deer and turkey) as well as the ranch goats. The house was clean and modern and had a great patio overlooking the creek. Mr. & Mrs. Syfan were great hosts. We plan to go back again sometime in the future.

  • Submitted: Sep 21, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: We are so blessed to have our guests leave feeling as if they are a part of our extended family. The ranch always offers more than people expect to find and to a person they treat it with a degree of respect that amazes us. So many say that the pictures just do not tell the story. Maybe checking out our web site would help <> and don't miss the Areal 'Tour at the lower right corner of the home page.
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Awesome Vacation!!

  • 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed our week at Riachuelo Ranch. It had so many things to do, like relaxing in the creek or the swimming hole, fishing in the lake, riding around before dark looking for all the wildlife or taking advantage of the shooting range (which we found out we are one sharp-shooting family). We couldn't ask for more hospitable owners. Thank you, Bernard and Rosalie, for the welcome basket and giving us a tour of your beautiful ranch. We are already talking about and planning to come back.

  • Submitted: Aug 10, 2016
  • Stayed: Jul 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Quiet Seclusion

  • 5 of 5

My family of ten (consisting of 6 adults and four kids - ages 10, 5 and two 3 year olds) stayed at the ranch for 6 days at the end of June. We all had a great time and we weren't ready to go home. The house was clean and had everything we needed. Literally the only things you need to bring are food and sunscreen. We didn't spend much time in the house. We spent most of our time outdoors. Mr. Syfan allowed us to bring our four wheelers. We rode them all over the ranch and saw all kinds of animals. It felt like we had the entire 1200 acre ranch all to ourselves! We filled our days with riding the four wheelers, playing in the creek which was great for the little ones (not too deep, just right) walking and exploring the creek, fishing, swimming in the swimming hole, shooting guns at the gun range, and relaxing. We also caught lots of tadpoles! This is exactly the kind of place we were looking for and we look forward to going back again and again. If you're looking for quality family time and seclusion, this is the place for you. And thank you, Mr. Syfan, for sharing your ranch with us!

  • Submitted: Aug 1, 2016
  • Stayed: Jun 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Great Family Adventure

  • 5 of 5

It is an amazing property with so much to offer. We had four children between the ages of 5-8 who had the time of their life. We had so much fun that we never left the property our whole trip. I would highly recommend it.

  • Submitted: Jul 14, 2016
  • Stayed: Jul 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Riachuelo Ranch is truly a Destination Resort that offers nature centered vacation opportunities in a wonderful park-llike working ranch environment offering a wide range or wholesome out of doors activities for all ages.
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We had an amazing Christmas vacation!

  • 5 of 5

The Creek House rocks. We arrived and Bernie took the girls an I on a tour of the ranch in the 4 wheeler while Rosalie visited with the wife at the house. We felt very welcomed, and the gift basket was a nice touch. We spent a week at the house and there was always something to do and we now have so many memories. Constant animal sightings, Deer, Antelope, etc..and the goats. Great Pyrenees goat herding dogs, we went out and fed the goats every youngest daughters favorite part of the day. It snowed one day, and we drove out onto the ranch and we watched it snow over the hills as the sun set. We spent days/evenings in front of the fireplace. I took the girls to the gun range. Our youngest celebrated her birthday and climbed to the top of the bluff next to the house. We went for walks, listened to the creek flow below, and slowed down. The girls could go out to the studio and relax for a while, it gave me and my wife some peace and quiet. When they came back, we would cook on the grill, play games, and relax. We watched the birds that were always at the feeders on the deck, and we talked. My favorite part of the day was the morning, when I poured my coffee and walked out the front door, and walked for bit, and just took in the scenery. We have done some pretty cool international vacations...and the girls still rate this one #1.

  • Submitted: Jan 13, 2016
  • Stayed: Dec 2015
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: It is a joy to host a public that thoroughly enjoys the quiet activity, privacy, peace and tranquility which is found here on a park-like working working ranch.
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Nearest Airport
68 Miles
Kerrville 20 mi. San Antonio 68 mi.-Austin 80+ mi.
Nearest Barpub
8 Miles
Ingram, TX
Nearest Golf
18 Miles
Nearest Train
68 Miles
San Antonio
Nearest Motorway
1 Miles
State Highway 27 One mile-I-10 Mile post 492-4mls
Nearest Restaurant
11 Miles
Nearest Ski
500 Miles
New Mexico
Nearest Beach
150 Miles
Corpus Christe
Car: necessary

You have found a rural, park-like, destination resort .

We think that once you see this 1200 acre Ranch with its canyons, lakes and streams and the Western opulence of natural beauty, you will want to stay right here and enjoy a quite relaxing visit with nature and plenty of things to experience within walking distance. In fact this ranch is proving to be the ultimate Destination. Seldom does anyone leave the ranch. They see what they want to do right here.

We offer a big sky view of the stars as you roam the ranch in the evening or just relax and enjoy the beauty at hand.

Roaming the ranch by itself is a treat. There is so much to do and see like bird watching, shooting, walking on the ranch roads or up the rocky canyons, fishing and being in the midst of the wildlife like wild turkeys and deer that feed just across the way, seeing the fireflies and the goats and the dogs that live in the pasture with them as protectors. Not to mention the quiet serenity and being away from the rush of city life.

Many of our inquirers have asked if we have a comfortable place to go swimming. Now we have a 40' x 50' x 5' deep Swimming Hole. It is nestled against a concrete dam/retaining wall and against a steep limestone bluff. The pool is to be enclosed by a wall with 48 feet of infinity topping and a small sand beach next to the bluff on one end and an 8' x 25' willow tree shaded deck at poolside against the existing dam. The water that tops the infinity edge is to be gathered and directed to the downstream corner of the pool where it trickles down a steep boulder waterfall feature.

Near the the pool is a panic area with horseshoe pitch, washer pitch, volleyball area, drinking fountain and outdoor bathroom; all in a pecan tree shaded area bottom.

This is ready for the summer fun. We are sure that anyone that strolls up the creek will be enticed to just sit a while at poolside and enjoy the quiet flow of natural spring water as it makes its way on down the creek.

You will have to come visit to fully appreciate this fitting extension of Rustic Elegance.

If you have horses, bring them along and ride the endless trails on the ranch through canyons and among the oak trees or across the expanse of grassy meadow lands. We have a good coral and ring to hold your mounts when they are not under saddle and a fine tack room to keep your tack out of the weather.

Don't forget just old fashioned walking. Take to the many ranch roads or stroll up the tree-lined creek looking for minnows, frogs or fossils that are evidence that the limestone formations that you walk on were once an ocean bed eons ago.

Bring your guns, amo. and targets. Both of our ranges have a roofed places to stand or sit to in the shade while you shoot. Target backboards are set up at 32 feet for pistols and at 25, 50, and 100 meters for rifles. If you have shotguns, we have flingers for clay pigeons. The original range is reserved for light shooting and our new Canyon Range canyon is used for heavy shooting, there you can bang away as much as you want.

There are lakes well stocked with large mouth bass, perch and catfish for those with the skill and patience. Actually the young ones have a ball with a pole and live bate. There are a lot of weeds but that does not seem to deter. The large mouth bass are catch and release for anything over 15' but eat all you want between 11 and 15 inches long and all the catfish and perch you are skilled enough to land.

If you chose to wonder the area there are many interesting places to go and things to do. The giant Cyprus trees that line the Guadalupe River make the river one of the Hill Country's crowning glories, 20 minutes drive along the river to Hunt there is a restaurant called Elaine's Table, a good place to dine as you view the flowing river and dam. As you approach the city of Hunt you can chose either of the two fork of the Guadalupe river for a scenic drive. Either forks is defiantly a photo opportunity drive. The Guadalupe River originates in this area with the many springs that leap out of the Edwards limestone formation. One can play in it, slide down the spillway at the dam in Ingram, tube down it or just drive along its banks for many miles.

If you want to shop there is the quaint, old and well preserved town of Fredericksburg or antiquing in the Ingram Loop 10 minutes away or the town of Comfort within a half hour drive. Bandera claims to be the oldest cowboy town in the west and is 30 minutes away. On the way to Bandera is Camp Verde Restaurant which is near an old Cavalry Post where the US Army had imported Camels.


Rates & Availability

Mountain Home House Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
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Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
May 26 2017 - Aug 7 2017
3 night minimum stay
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Refundable damage deposit $1,000
Pet Fee $200 + Tax
Cleaning Fee $200 + Tax
Tax Rate 6.0%

Please do not leave your animals in the house while you are away, it is important to bring a cage or put them in the dog run or Laundry room. Male dogs will often lift their leg in a strange house, you are responsible for damages. Two (2) dog maximum. Extra roll-away bed fee of $50. per request over 8 guest.

For larger parties, we can accommodate an additional 14 guests in our nearby Lodge. See property # 573890

Check in time, 4:00pm, check out, 10:00am, if the house is not booked for the next few days, then it is flexible.

A fee of $150.00 will be charged for each night under the posted minimum stay.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
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Mountain Home House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 2500 sq. ft.
Location Type:
  • Beachfront ...
  • Mountain View ...
  • Rural ...
  • Water View ...
  • Waterfront ...
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Air Conditioning ...
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Fireplace ...
  • Garage ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 3 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , combination tub/shower
    Bathroom 3 - toilet , shower
  • The master bath suite contains a sink and counter cabinet and a closet in one space and a tub/shower and toilet in a separate space. Number two has a shower/tub, sink and toilet. The studio has a shower, sink and a toilet.
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 10
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 king
    Bedroom 2 - 1 queen , Queen size bed has a Sleep Number air matress
    Bedroom 3 - 1 queen , 2 bunk bed
  • The master bedroom with it's large King size bed and the number two bedroom with it's feature Sleep Number queen size beds, and comfortable seating, presents quality choices. The third bedroom we call the Studio. It has a Queen size bed and two bunks, a bath and closet. Kids of all ages will love this hide away.
  • Books ...
  • DVD Player ...
  • Games ...
  • Satellite / Cable ...
  • Stereo
  • Television ...
  • Video Library ...
  • Bicycles ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lanai / Gazebo ...
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Tennis ...
  • 1 bicycles
  • Events Allowed
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters ...
  • children welcome ...
  • non smoking only
  • wheelchair accessible ...
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool ...
  • Private Pool ...
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • health/beauty spa
  • library
  • live theater
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • winery tours
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • eco tourism
  • horseback riding
  • horseshoes
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundromat
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • basketball court
  • cycling
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf privileges optional
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • jet skiing
  • kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • rafting
  • rock climbing
  • spelunking
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • water tubing
If you would like to learn more about the ranch, please visit our web site at: . Note that we also have a very nice Lodge which is available for overflow. It sleeps an additional 14+ people in one Queen, eight bunks and two couch beds which are sometimes used as doubles. The Lodge is not up to the standard of the Creek House but check the photos and see that it is quite nice for the larger groups or gatherings. We are available for Weddings, family gatherings and company meetings. We offer much more than just a fantastic place to stay, you can walk, run, ride bikes, fish, play in the creek, shoot your guns, read, or just relax in as beautiful and serene places that you are ever likely to find anywhere.

Learn more about this vacation rental at the owner's website:

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