Square Butte Ranch [Represented Buyer]

Square Butte Ranch [Represented Buyer]

Musselshell County Montana
Square Butte Ranch [Represented Buyer]
ID: 26291
Status: Sold
Sold Price: $13,400,000
Acres: 10,487±
Price Per Acre: $1,278
City, State: Roundup, Montana
County: Musselshell County
ZIP Code: 59072
Presented By: Blayne St. James
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2.5

Property Description

Square Butte Ranch rests in the heart of South-Central Montana and has a combined total of 16,331+/- acres (10,487 Deeded).  This property is nestled up against the Bull Mountain range and encompasses an impressive mix of valleys, rock outcroppings, meadows, sandstone, and hills. The reliable water sources are also abundant, including springs, drainages, wells, and over two miles of Fattig Creek. The landscape, which includes dense timber ridges and rich vegetation in combination with the water sources, helps make this area one of the top trophy Elk hunting ranches available in the entire state! The unit regularly produced bulls in excess of 380 inches B&C.  Add in the wide variety of other hunting, recreational, and agricultural opportunities, and you have one of the most desirable ranch properties on the market today.


Square Butte Ranch has historically been used as a cattle ranch and its modest improvements keep the ranch functional, yet not overdone. This means one isn't paying for an overly improved property and any future home can be built to the buyer's exact specifications.  The ranch is being sold fully furnished with all fixtures and furnishings included. Currently, the ranch improvements consist of:

  • Remodeled, 2 Bedroom, 2.5 bath, 2000 sf home (originally built in 1910)
  • 32 x 40 log barn (1968)
  • 22 x 108 updated, heated shop (1996)
  • Bunk House
  • Hay Storage
  • Loafing Sheds
  • Fenced and cross fenced


Unlike many ranches, Square Butte Ranch is easily accessible, yet remote enough to provide the privacy that is so sought after in today's world.  The property is accessed from a year-round maintained county road and is a short 30 min drive back to the town of Roundup.  Billings is only 35 minutes away and offers, among other things, an international airport.  The county road provides easy access to various locations on the ranch.  The interior of the ranch has just the right amount of 4-wheel drive roads which provide access to the water sources and multitude of honey holes that exist on this ranch, while still providing for a host of undisturbed areas that act as a wildlife sanctuary.


Whether you are a die-hard bowhunter, a traditional muzzleloader enthusiast, or a long-range rifle hunter, Square Butte Ranch provides ideal terrain and conditions for all three! The tall Ponderosa Pines provide the perfect place to spot and stalk bugling Bull Elk in September while the large meadows and rock outcroppings help ensure those rifle hunters have the best chance at success possible.

Perfect Timing!!! The Square Butte Ranch is located in Unit 590 and just recently, the Montana Fish and Wildlife commission moved forward with a plan to keep the private and public land elk hunting regulations combined. According to an article from KTVH out of Helena MT, this plan would affect central and Southwestern districts, including Unit 590, by increasing the number of available hunting permits by 50%.  With the new changes, drawing one of the most coveted archery tags in the west will be much easier.  Judging off previous statistics, it appears that a hunter may be able to draw the archery tag every other year.

  • Elk
  • Mule Deer
  • Whitetail Deer
  • Pheasant
  • Sharp-tailed Grouse
  • Antelope
  • Bear
  • Merriam Turkey

In September of 2020, the Bobcat Wildfire burned portions of the ranch. While there are some burnt, standing trees on the property, the fire did create the perfect habitat for new lush grass to spread across the forest floor. In addition to cleaning up the debris and detritus that builds up over time, these wildfires provide a multitude of benefits, including attracting and holding even more wildlife. HD 590 offers a handful of Elk and Deer seasons, again, catering to your weapon of choice.

Elk Hunting Seasons:

  • Early Season - Antlerless Elk (Private Land Only) Aug 15 - Sept 2
  • Archery Only - Either Sex Sept 3 - Oct 16
  • Season (Rifle) - Either Sex - Oct 22 - Nov 27
  • Muzzleloader - Either Sex - Dec 10 - 18
  • Late Season (General & B Licenses Available) - Antlerless Only - Nov 28 - Feb 15

Deer Hunting Seasons:

  • Archery Only - Either Sex Sept 3 - Oct 16
  • Season (Rifle) - Either Sex - Oct 22 - Nov 27
  • Muzzleloader - Either Sex - Dec 10 - 18
  • Antlerless (B Licenses) - Available for all 3 seasons listed above

Turkey Seasons (Region 5):

  • 1 General Turkey License valid statewide (except for a portion of Region 4) for male turkey in the spring and either-sex turkey in the fall
  • 1 Regional Turkey License in each of Regions 1, 2, 5 & 7 valid for male turkey in the spring and either-sex turkey in the fall (Region 5 license only valid in the spring)

In addition to a wide variety of big game hunting opportunities, Square Butte Ranch provides future owners to chase a wide variety of small game, including Sharp-tailed Grouse, Pheasants, Ducks, Geese, Coyote, Fox, and Rabbits. While there currently aren't any hunting leases in place, one could realize a significant amount of annual income should they choose to lease the hunting to a reputable outfitter.


Square Butte Ranch is located in the heart of the Bull Mountains. The terrain in this area is relatively gentle, providing a very accessible mix of creek bottoms, meadows, rolling hills, and large patches of Ponderosa Pines. This combination makes for the perfect habitat to hold Elk, Mule Deer, White-tail Deer, Antelope, Turkeys, and various upland birds year-round. This property is surrounded by other large private ranches and provides privacy and seclusion while at the same time being easily accessible throughout the year.

Roundup, MT is the closest town and is approximately 14 miles, as the crow flies, NW of the property, intersected by Hwy 12 and Hwy 87. Roundup is a small-town community with all of the necessary conveniences: including groceries, shops, restaurants, as well as a reputable school system, and medical/hospital facilities. The largest city in the state, Billings, is an easy 35-minute drive southwest of the property and provides all the amenities afforded by a large metropolis including world-class restaurants, galleries, concert venues, hotels, and retail shops. In addition, the Billings Logan International Airport offers nonstop and connecting flights to thousands of cities worldwide. 


The ranch has traditionally been used for grazing cattle, and while that still holds true today, the number of animals has been trimmed down to maximize the rangeland for cattle and wildlife alike. The ranch has quality 4-strand barbed-wire perimeter fencing as well as cross-fencing. All the grass hay grown on the ranch is grazed by the cattle but could be cut and sold if the future owner chooses. Currently, the owner has negotiated a grazing lease with a neighboring rancher that pays $50,000 annually and specifies that the rancher will keep up the fences, wells, water etc.


Square Butte Ranch has an impressive mix of seasonal creeks, natural springs, and agricultural wells / storage tanks. Frattig Creek follows the county road and winds through the ranch for +/- two miles. Various other seasonal tributaries exist throughout the ranch, including the headwaters of Hawk Creek. Much of the West has experienced droughts in the recent past, but fortunately for the future owner of Square Butte Ranch, the natural water sources are supplemented with agricultural wells, stock troughs, and storage tanks. Regardless of whether or not Mother Nature provides the gentle summer rains that this area is known for, there are reliable water sources for livestock and wildlife alike.


In addition to the 10,487+/- Deeded Acres, the ranch leases 80+/- (BLM Lease acres), 1,280+/- (State Lease acres).  However, the majority of the leased acreage (4,484+/- acres) is private land that is exclusively leased to the current ranch owner for a forty-year term.  The private lease is far more beneficial than the much more common government / state land leases as the general public is not allowed to access these privately held acres.  In addition, should the owner of the private leased acres ever decide to sell, it would provide the perfect opportunity to add deeded acres to the current ranch that already exists inside the total acreage boundary.  One can see from the boundary maps, that all of this ranch's deeded and leased acreage is in one contiguous block. This layout helps make it easier to manage, fence, graze and hunt the property.


When evaluating an investment of this size, it's important to find a property that checks all of the boxes: Accessibility, functionality, recreational opportunities, income-producing, water sources, terrain, location, elevation, with no restrictive easements, and/or covenants. You can look as far and wide and still would be hard-pressed to find a ranch that is as favorable in all of these criteria as Square Butte Ranch. 

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