The Cottonwood Ranch is in eastern Rio Grande County, Colorado. The ranch is approximately 135 acres of irrigated hay meadows, dry agricultural fields, ponds, and wetlands. Private property borders the ranch on all sides. The Rio Grande forms most of the northern border of the ranch. The topography is flat, with an elevation of approximately 7640 to 7650 feet above sea level. There only permanent residential improvement on the property is a seasonal fishing cabin in the central area, adjacent to a spring-fed pond that rises and falls with the river. The north area of the ranch consists of a riverbank, cottonwood forest (bosque) and wetlands. About 15 acres of the wetlands are permanent; the rest are dry between November and March. The John Nelson Ditch and the Horner & Ydren irrigation ditch deliver water to fields in the central and southern areas. Agricultural uses include hay harvest and seasonal livestock grazing. There are minor agricultural improvements, such as corrals and irrigation ditches with gates. Approximately 120 acres of the property are irrigated, and there is natural subirrigation throughout from spring runoff. The property boundary is fenced except for the boundary line that is in the river. Fencing consists of traditional multiple strands of barbed wire, with reinforcements at property corners and gates. There are cross-fences and an old barbed-wire fence surrounding part of the seasonal cabin area. Cottonwood Ranch lies within CPW Game Management Unit 791, containing habitat resources for big game, such as elk, mule deer and turkey. The ranch provides migration, wintering, and breeding resources for numerous species of birds. This part of the Central Flyway that lies along the Rio Grande is important for water dependent species during both spring and fall migrations. Cottonwood Ranch is under a conservation easement to preserve its agricultural and wildlife values. The Property is an important part of the open space and agricultural land remaining in Rio Grande County. The nearest population center to the Cottonwood Ranch is the City of Monte Vista, one mile to the south. It is the most populous municipality and the center of agricultural commerce in Rio Grande County. Recreational opportunities can be found all around the ranch from fishing, hunting, skiing, hiking, golf and so many others.