News

Alpers Owens River Ranch Being Sold: Fishing No Longer Permitted

Posted by Tom Chandler 12/8/2007

Found via those industrious types at MidCurrent, the San Diego Union is reporting that Alpers Owens River Ranch is being sold, and that fly fishers will no longer have access to this pay fishery once the sale is final.

For those not familiar with the California fly fishing scene, the Owens River Ranch was a famous private stretch of the Owens River where a dry fly/wet fly fishing ethic was strictly enforced by the owners.

Owned by the Alpers family, who will continue to operate the Alpers rainbow trout hatchery, the Owens River Ranch featured some cool rustic cabins and some fairly educated trout.

A mainstay among many Sierra anglers -- some of whom had been fishing the thing for 30 years or more -- the closure is the result of the sale of the ranch to neighbors.

So long Owens River Ranch. It's been a good run, and a lot of us will miss you.


AuthorPicture

Tom Chandler

As the author of the decade leading fly fishing blog Trout Underground, Tom believes that fishing is not about measuring the experience but instead of about having fun. As a staunch environmentalist, he brings to the Yobi Community thought leadership on environmental and access issues facing us today.

21 comments
Got married on the ranch in 1992. Alice and Tim agreed to let us take our vows one Saturday afternoon. Miss Alice, miss Tim & Pam and miss the ranch. went by early in the year and peeked in. Sure would have loved to go in but pretty well posted. Basically learned to fly fish there. It was great. Alice and I would play sports trivia throughout the day. She knew her stuff. Never saw a "blind" person ... more drive a truck so well. And remember :DON'T PET THE GOD DAMN BEAVER!!!"
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It really irks me when one of these "rich folks friends" posts a picture on a social media page of some huge trout he caught on the property of the old Alpers Ranch, like he's some champion angler. Those fish would bite on a dog turd if it hit the water. Most of these guys all decked out in their brand-new waders,vest,net and pole couldn't land a wild trout if their life depended on it. Who says you ... more can't buy happiness.
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Wow...as a little girl my grandparents. George amp; Mary Jackson would get me to the ORR...Cathy and I became wonderful friends...Babbie she called me...Alice and Bill were like family Timmy too. I loved Buck amp; Missy...the Tin can water cup hinging by the creek in front of the Ranch House on the porch...the Purple grape sour gumballs....the big old comfy chair in the lodge...drinking cold milk ... more in the kitchen after a long ride down in the valley...catching grasshoppers...selling them...I remember Frank Nelson...the McNeils (had such a crush on Bob McNiel) ....so many summers of pure bliss....I would love to hear from Cathy or Timmy ...I have a notch out of my heart for the ORR. This was back in the 60's...yep or before. I hope to hear from someone...Barbie Jackson Watson
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OH! The end of an era. I went to work there just to meet the half blind woman running a ranch. What a wonderful colorful character. She loved her family ranch and I'm sure Tim and Pam put much thought into this new development. Must say I'm sorry to see it change hands. Was hoping to stay there this spring. The big log cabin was my favorite. Alice liked the the cabin closest to the entrance, she considered ... more it the "honeymoon cabin".
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[...] Alpers Owens River Ranch Being Sold: Fishing No Longer Permitted #8230; By admin in Uncategorizednbsp; You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed. [...]
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What a wonderful place. I can remember going there as a kid with Alice running the place. At one point she could hardly see, but she still drove all over the ranch. What a wonderful woman and how sad I am that I can't share the place with my son...
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what's next - the Big Springs Camp Ground? is there anyplace left?
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I never leave blogs- but htis is tragic! I knew the father Bill Alpers from 40 + years ago. When Arcularius was sold that was bad but this is tragic. Alpers was one of the last and maybe only one that still held water rights - DWP didnt get them. I fished the first year Bill cut the "ditch" So long................
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anyone remember Larry? with Scotty the Wonder Horse?
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[...] Arcularius Ranch was full so I went back up the road to the Owens River Ranch and checked in for five days. I began fishing with my Winston since the headwaters are rather [...]
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Well, recognize that Tim and Pam Alpers are very good people. They understand better than anyone the position they were in. And I know it wasn't a casual decision for them. As I understand it, Tim could have taken 3 times more money by a commercial developer. Instead, he opted for the single buyer helping to guarantee the land wouldn't be developed.
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Its funny though i met the young dude, (who lived there) that would come out and fish with me and my cousins. he was the nicest man i have ever met. i just dont get why you would sell such a cool place to the uptight next door neighbors. they are only a private cabins! thats just a horriable mistake on Tim. p.s. i like cabin 5 the best. or whatever was the biggest one. My favorite and it also had ... more the best spot on the river 20 steps away
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It's tough to top repeat family vacations for memory value.
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Luke, Your grandpa had the right idea. Make sure you find another place to give your kids and grandkids the same opportunity. It my take years but do it. I started taking my son up there 3 years ago and it's truly the highlight of our year. Final Thought: I have no recollection of anyone ever being rude or out of line at Alpers. Nothing but great memories with my very best friends and family.
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what!!!!!! thats my favorite place to fish!!!! i guess money is better than the joy of landing a Huge trout. wow im sixteen and my grandparents took me up there 5 years in a row. i was planning on doing it for my grand children but i guess thats gone..... its sad
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I don't know. Having been going there for 20+ years, I'm going to miss it.
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You are right...there have been times when the fishing was extremely good on the Owens. And Cabin 7...how do you even explain it to someone who has never been? I've stayed at the Lodge at Pebble Beach overlooking the 18th hole, and I still prefer Cabin 7. Any thoughts on alternatives, realizing that the charm of Alpers will not be matched?
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John: Your sentiment mirrors of a lot of others; it wasn't that the fishing was all that monstrous (though it could be good, and it certainly was challenging), but the place occupied a regular, recurring home on a lot of calendars for many, many years.
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Three families started going 24 years ago when it was $25 each/nite and we were the kids. Now our kids have enjoyed the place at $70 each/nite and they're closing the place to the public. The fishing was never that great but the place was unbeatable on all levels. It's a shame someone finally had to "kiss the beaver" and ruin it for the rest of us.
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I admit it, the Beaver angle occurred to me too. Turns out it was bought by the neighbors -- the same folks who bought the nearby Arcularis Ranch. Looks like this one's going, going...
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The question stands though- who bought it? It smells like a dirty Beaver maybe in the background somewhere
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