Spectacular Retreat in the Georgia Mountains

It was just a little four bedroom lodge with an adjacent stable forbison when David Pittspurchased his family retreat on top of TrayMountain in 2010. It was “rough hewn wood, very cowboy rustic,when I bought it,” he says. “I made it more appealing.” After a multi-million dollar renovation, Bison View Lodge featuresfifteen bedrooms and thirteen and a half baths. The party barnseats forty plus. There are seven fireplaces, a wrap-aroundveranda, decks, and a covered dining porch. The hot tub and firepit enjoy a grand sweeping view of mountains and trees, with notanother house in view. The lodge, which borders national forest, is set on fifteen quiet,utterly private, wooded acres. Yet, it’s just ten minutes from thetown of Helen, Georgia’s popular alpine village, where Octoberfestlasts three months. “You don’t have to go to Munich,” he says witha laugh. Pitts helicopters in, a quick thirty minute trip from Atlanta. Theproperty has a landing pad. If you lack a helicopter, an airport isnearby, and the property includes three carports with coveredspace for up to seven cars. The drive time is about an hour and ahalf. “It’s a private retreat for me, my family, and friends,” he says. “Wehave big parties four times a year, people fly in from all over theworld.” Visitors fight over who gets to stay in the log cabin guestsuite up the hill, nestled in the rustling trees. Pitts says it would make a great corporate or executive retreat, awedding venue, or a mountain home for a celebrity like Tyler Perry.The property is fully fenced, gated, and equipped with top of theline security systems. “There are no other lots with residences like I have,” says the Kingof the Hill.

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Posted by: ATyler
Posted on: 3/30/2017 at 11:12 AM
Categories: Equestrian and Ranch
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Saddling Up in Asheville

Chances are, when you think of Asheville, North Carolina you think of the foodie scene, the beer, clean air, and the Biltmore Estate, the 130,000 square foot Castle  set on 8,000 breathtaking acres of garden and forest that was built in 1895 by George Vanderbilt. 

Chances are you don’t think of fox hunts and ranches and thousands of acres of riding trails. Yet, the western North Carolina towns surrounding Ashville are a hot bed of equestrian activity says Rick Merrill, of Beverly-Hanks Realtors.  

“There’s trail riding and endurance trail riding, on Arabian horses, which are built for it. There’s dressage, jumping, and fox hunting - where you turn out dogs who scent the fox and everyone is dolled up in fancy clothing.” 

Then there’s western-style trail riding, “They sometimes gather for several day’s  ride,” he says.

Ride for several days?

“Oh yes,” he laughs. “There are places where you can ride for 50 miles.” 

DuPont Forest has 10,000 acres of fine trails. Pisgah National Forest has over 200,000 acres. 

Capping it off, there’s the world class, $100,000,000 Tryon International Equestrian Center in Mill Spring, 

“There’s  stabling for 1,000 horses,” he says. Once you see it you won’t forget it.” 

And that’s attracting ranch buyers from Florida, Connecticut, Colorado, California – places that are becoming increasingly crowded and highly taxed.

There are hundreds of horse farms in the area, he says. “Some on just a few acres, others on hundreds.” Not that I have  any listed right now. Merrill’s job is to find you that dream ranch – he recently discovered six possibilities for a pair of  endurance riding veterans.  Several of my fellow Beverly-Hanks agents have farm listings from $79,000 to $5.1 M.

His own is on 18 acres. “It’s a cool lifestyle,” he says. “Our kids all rode starting when they were four. They learned responsibility and it’s a lot of fun for the family, just saddle your horse and ride.” 


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Posted by: ATyler
Posted on: 3/30/2017 at 10:49 AM
Categories: Equestrian and Ranch
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