Nature and Wildlife
Storm Mountain Ranch teems with plant life; from delicate Sub Alpine wildflowers to splendid Aspen that shimmer golden in autumn, while Scrub Oak add brilliant crimson patches of seasonal coloration.
The mountainside's breathtaking and ecologically significant Aspen/Bracken fern community has at times a tropical feeling, rare in the West. Fir trees and Blue Spruce keep the landscape alive through winter, until the canyon roars with snowmelt and the bright green shoots of spring growth appear once more.
At the gentle altitude of the lower valley at 6,900 feet, Storm Mountain Ranch feels like high country but the air is easier to breathe. The valley rises immediately on the North side of the ranch to the Steamboat Ski area, and on the South side of the ranch to Rabbit Ears Pass at over 11,000 feet. The growing season is longer here, and the vegetation is lusher than at higher elevations.
Our mountainside and canyon neighbors range from humble ground dwellers like marmot, ermine, and porcupine to lords of earth and sky like heron, eagle, moose, and elk. This is also the country of the black bear and mountain lion and it is wise to understand the rules of backcountry safety before venturing out.