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Land to sell for $18.5 million

Foley Butte Block is located in Crook and Jefferson counties


by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Willow Creek originates on the Foley Butte property, now offered for sale by Ochoco Lumber Co., in Jefferson and Crook counties.If you have an extra $18.5 million, Ochoco Lumber Co. has a deal for you. The Prineville-based lumber company is set to auction off most of its Central Oregon land — about 32,475 acres in Crook and Jefferson counties.

Bids on the Foley Butte Block, which includes a tree farm with about 80 million board feet of ponderosa pine, and 147 miles of creeks, including the headwaters of Willow Creek, and are due in the office of Realty Marketing/Northwest, in Portland, by July 25.

Bruce Daucsavage, president of Ochoco Lumber, said that company is looking to expand its operation in John Day, where it already owns 14,000 acres, a biomass plant, sawmill, chipping facility, whole log shaving facility, and shavings bagging operation on about 75 acres.

"There are opportunities in John Day that we don't have here," Daucsavage explained. "There are contracts being let for timber in Malheur National Forest, which ends east of Mitchell."

When Daucsavage went to work for Ochoco Lumber in 1983, there were five mills operating in Prineville, but that's no longer the case.

In 2001, Ochoco closed and liquidated its sawmill, which has been in existence since 1939.

"Here in Central Oregon, there are no sawmills other than in Warm Springs and Gilchrist; we don't have a sawmill here any longer," he said.

Fortunately, he said, Ochoco saw an opportunity in John Day in 1983, and expanded its operation there, where it has operated as Malheur Lumber Co. ever since.

"With this new model by the Forest Service (stewardship contracting), we see a bright future in Grant County," said Daucsavage. "The collaborative process is much more advanced over there."

Stewardship contracting is an agreement in which the proceeds from the sale of the timber are used to complete other service projects, such as fuels reduction.

With the company's biomass plant right next to the mills in John Day, the company is able to use its wood residue for pellets and energy production.

"We can add value to the product," he said. "It's a very good alternative to electricity or propane."

Ochoco Lumber will maintain its corporate headquarters in Prineville, where it employs six people, including the management team. The company also owns about 45 acres in Prineville, and another 40 acres outside of town, which could be developed, as well as other property by Ochoco Lake.

Daucsavage hopes that the sale will appeal to "people wanting to own a contiguous block of 32,000 acres, with a lot of water and standing timber and great grazing."

About 7,500 acres of the property is in Jefferson County, and 25,400 in Crook County, he said, with a public road that heads south from Ramms Road on the Jefferson County side, but stops at a gate where it meets the Crook County side. The road is surrounded by private Ochoco Lumber property on both sides.

Realty Marketing/Northwest has a 52-page, color magazine-like catalog with extensive information on the property and auction at www.rmnw-auctions.com/catalogs/ochoco-auction-catalog/.

The property may be divided into three parts: the Ochoco main block of 30,324 acres, with a reserve price of $17.02 million; the Lofton Creek track of 1,714 acres, at $995,000; and the Willow Creek cabin tract of 437 acres, at $485,000. If the total minimum of $18.5 million is met, the bid will be awarded in about a week.

Contact Realty Marketing at 1-800-845-3524 for more information.




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