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Sopori Ranch

Arivaca Road, Amado, AZ 85645
2,555 Acres | $6,900,000
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THE SOPORI RANCH HAS 2.5 MILES OF SOPORI WASH FRONTAGE ON 2,555 +/- ACRES WITH SOME OF THE LARGEST COTTONWOODS IN ARIZONA!! It is set amid lush riparian waterways, dramatic ridgelines, secluded valleys, and is surrounded by the Tumacacori, Cerro Colorado, Sierrita and Santa Rita mountain ranges. This dramatic land is adjacent to thousands of acres of preserved wilderness and State Trust lands. The seasonally flowing waters of Sopori Wash flow through the ranch providing an ecologically rich and diverse riparian ecosystem & a natural wildlife corridor between the surrounding mountain ranges. The Sopori Wash is a key tributary of the Santa Cruz River & a critical wildlife corridor. This portion of the wash is one of the few riparian-dominated, shallow-groundwater areas left in this region. Large galleries of ancient cottonwoods, willow, ash, hackberry and elderberry line its banks and provide habitat for Coues deer, mule deer, mountain lion, bobcat, badger, ocelot, coati, jaguar, wolf, javelina, kit fox and more. A wide range of birds including the Swainson’s hawk, Bell’s vireo, and western-yellow-billed cuckoo, cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl, rufous-winged sparrow, vermillion flycatcher and lesser long-nosed bat call this home. Many of these animal species are endangered. The land also hosts 67 plant species, including the endangered Pima pineapple cactus.
This southern Arizona ranch lies among lush rolling hills with sweeping mountain vistas where the warm sun-drenched air is clear, and the easy pace of ranch life still exists. Adjoining vast stretches of scenic State Trust land and thousands of acres of pristine wildness preserve, Sopori Ranch is where you can now own a 2,555 deeded acre ranch estate on one of Arizona’s most beautiful private ranches. While the land remains as it was when the Spanish missionaries and explorers first arrived here centuries ago, Tubac and Green Valley provide modern conveniences and comforts of refined living nearby. The artist colony of Tubac in the beautiful Santa Cruz River valley in southeastern Arizona is recognized as a year-round vacation destination by travel writers worldwide. Its artist galleries, shops, fine restaurants, farmers markets, wellness spas and championship golf course offer travelers and residents a unique experience found nowhere else in the southwest. Sopori Ranch lies in the heart of this activity rich area. Just 15 minutes north, Green Valley offers a full complement of shopping, services and medical facilities. Just 45 minutes north is the flourishing city of Tucson and the Tucson International airport. All in all, there are very few places left that rival, let alone equal, Sopori Ranch.

LOCATION: 5 miles west of I-19 and Amado, Arizona in Santa Cruz County.

ACCESS: From I-19 access is via the lightly traveled paved County maintained Arivaca Road. Parts of the ranch have paved frontage, and the interior property is accessed by privately owned ranch roads. Hiking and horseback riding are endless on trails and in the Sopori Wash.

ELEVATION: The ranch’s elevation varies from 3,200 to 3,600 feet which produce mild sunny winters with average daytime highs in the mid 70’s and nighttime lows in the low 40’s. Summer highs average in the low to mid 90’s with the nighttime lows in the mid 60’s. The overall annual average high temperature is 84 degrees, and the overall average low is 48 degrees. Average annual rainfall is 16.6 inches and 310 sunny days a year.

POWER: Electricity is available to the northern portion of the ranch south of Arivaca Road. The entire ranch is ideal for off-grid solar power.

WATER: Sopori Ranch overlies the Sopori Basin which adjoins the Santa Cruz River Basin. There is an abundance of water available from the underlying very shallow aquifer. The Arizona Department of Water Resources reports water depths from approximately 18′ to 155′ below the surface.

TOPOGRAPHICAL FEATURES: The land on the historic Sopori Ranch features a variety of terrains. Some of the highest elevations have sweeping uninterrupted views across the thousands of acres of untouched high desert landscapes. There is a selection of outstanding building sites with the towering Santa Rita, Tumacacori, Cerro Colorado, and Sierrita mountain ranges surrounding the land in all directions. There is also ample land shaded with rich stands of native mesquite trees which provide seclusion and privacy. Striking arroyos, which channel the summer monsoon rains from the surrounding highlands to the Sopori Wash, course throughout the property. These ruggedly beautiful waterways also serve as migratory corridors for the area’s diverse wildlife. The ranch borders 2.5 miles of both sides of the Sopori Wash and includes the riparian ownership of mature, old growth groves of huge cottonwood, willow, hackberry, mesquite and walnut trees that line the wash. The Sopori Wash is considered by biologists to be one of the region’s prime wildlife corridors. This riparian jewel of the ranch is heavily wooded and is very private. It has a remarkably rich combination of mesquite bosques and massive cottonwoods. Batamote Wash is another riparian area that flows into the Sopori Wash from the north. A ranch with two converging riparian areas is almost unheard of in this state. This creates an incredibly strong aquifer that supports the spectacular vegetation and wildlife.

HISTORY: For centuries Spanish conquistadors explored the rich Santa Cruz Valley in search of new lands and trade routes to the west. The history of the ranch includes being home to a farming community of Pima Indians in the late 17th century. Sopori could have been named after the Sobaipuri, a Pima Indian group named by Father Eusebio Francisco Kino in the late 1600’s. Or it could have come from the Spanish word sopor, meaning peaceful or drowsy. But it was not until Father Kino, Jesuit missionary, expert cartographer and avid explorer, founded the Tumacácori Mission in 1691 was the area assured its rightful place in history. Tubac, now the oldest European-settled city in Arizona, was soon born as a small farming settlement to support the needs of the mission. Later, in 1752, the Presidio San Ignacio de Tubac was founded to defend the mission and its settlers. Located between Mexico and the vastly unexplored Southwest Tubac was the perfect launching point for explorers like Father Kino and the Presidio’s second commander and most famous resident, Juan Bautista de Anza. Drawn to its picturesque locale, de Anza claimed Sopori Ranch as his own during his command at the Presidio. From there he embarked on numerous expeditions including his most historic 1,200-mile trek, founding the Presidio at San Francisco and establishing a strategic trade route from Mexico to the Pacific. But Sopori Ranch, with its gentle climate and untamed beauty, is where de Anza always returned because it was here amid the great climate and towering mountains that his heart considered home. After de Anza, others were attracted to Sopori Ranch over time. Daring miners searched for gold and silver in the nearby hills. Vaqueros rode herd over thousands of head of prize cattle. The legendary Jack Warner, cofounder of Warner Bros. movie studio, and his wife Ann were proud longtime owners of the ranch from the 1950’s to 1993. They used it as a tranquil retreat from the pressures of Hollywood. The Croll family purchased the Sopori Ranch in 1993 and successfully ranched it until selling all but approximately 500 acres to First United Realty, a Phoenix based family-owned real estate and development company in 2004. The Croll family still owns and operates a beef business there. First United Realty had a Master Planned Community with thousands of homes, a golf course, a resort hotel, schools, parks, open-spaces and commercial components designed for the ranch. They went through the arduous process of evaluating the area’s water supply with the Arizona Department of Water Resources which ensured water availability for a housing development with as many as 8,000 units over 12,500 acres. A Santa Cruz citizens’ initiative overturned the County Supervisors ruling for the preliminary zoning in 2008. That was the beginning of the beautiful preservation movement on the Sopori Ranch. In 2009, Pima County, located just west, purchased over 4,100 acres of the Sopori Ranch from First United for preservation through public bonds. The Arizona Land and Water Trust, a nonprofit Trust, purchased their first phase of the Sopori Ranch through a partnership with a private family foundation and First United Realty in 2016.

TODAY: The Arizona Land and Water Trust is finalizing the last phases of its preservation of the Sopori Ranch. This preservation will protect the land, vegetation and abundant wildlife from future development. All facets of the Sopori Ranch preservation are incredibly important, but the protection of the local watershed and aquifer may be foremost. Now, you have the opportunity to own this incredibly rare property. The new owner will be required to place a conservation easement on the ranch for further subdividing restrictions and protections of the wildlife riparian corridors and adjoining land. Doing so comes with the potential for substantial tax advantages. Please consult your tax attorney or CPA for details. However, you have the liberty to choose the location, within reason, of a generous 20 acre building envelope on which you can build your home, guest house, bunk house, barn and other ancillary ranch structures. You can drill your own private well and tie into the electricity or go completely off-grid. Imagine the ultimate privacy from your homestead set on this truly magical ranch. There is arguably no setting more beautiful with the seclusion, privacy and protection from neighbors and development, yet with all the modern conveniences of civilization nearby, than the Sopori Ranch. The collaboration among environmentalists, developers and agriculturalists that results in this conservation is a win-win that is extremely rare in the American West. Now it can be your legacy to be part of this vitally important and significant collaboration.

The Sopori Ranch has become an oasis where the past, present and the future are graciously blended to be enjoyed in equal measure. The ranch’s unsurpassed beauty has been valued by explorers and people of vision throughout the region’s history. It captivated their heart and soul. One glance and it will capture yours too – a distinctive place where you can create your own legacy – now and for future generations to come.

Property Details

Dwelling Type: Other
Lot Dimensions: Irregular
Lot Acres: 2,555
Lot Sqft: 111,295,800
Lot Size Source: Other
Horse Property: Yes – By Zoning
School District: Sahuarita
Elementary School: Sopori
Middle School: Sahuarita
High School: Sahuarita
Lot Sz Price/Acre: 2,700.59