Aspen Creek developer says they will respect ranch’s history |

Aspen Creek developer says they will respect ranch’s history

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer

Both the past and the future are likely to be represented in the new Aspen Creek development along Churchill Road in Dayton Valley.

Carol Dotson, of Lakemont/Wade Developers, said the company will try to save some of the historic structures on the 2,000-acre site, which encompasses the old O’Callaghan Ranch, formerly the Chaves Ranch.

“We’re going to try to preserve what we can,” she said. “We may leave the old well. If there’s anything structural that we can save, we will. There’s a lot of natural history there.”

The developer is also providing an easement for a bridge to cross the Carson River at Chaves Road, which would be only the second bridge crossing the Carson River in the Dayton Valley. The other is on Dayton Valley Road.

Aspen Creek will feature 521 lots of 12,000 square feet on 240 acres where Lakemont/Wade will build homes, Dotson said, with 27 five-acre lots north of Fort Churchill Road and 28 10-acre lots between Fort Churchill Road and the Carson River.

The subdivision stretches from the westernmost point of the Riverpark subdivision to about a mile east of the old Chaves ranch house, Dotson said.

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Developers also plan an entry to the development using cobblestone with the Chaves brand, Dotson added. “We’d like to honor their heritage there,” she said.

Chaves Ranch (pronounced Chave) goes back to the Dayton Valley’s early days, said longtime resident Ray Walmsley.

“It was probably one of the first ranches that was ever developed on the Carson River back in the 1800s,” he said.

The tentative map of the project was approved by the Lyon County Commission on Thursday.

The 10-acre lots, in the flood plain of the Carson River, will only allow homes close to Fort Churchill Road, according to Mark Rotter of Capital Engineering, since all residences have to be out of the floodway.

The five-acre and 10-acre lots will be on well and septics, but the 12,000-square-foot lots will be served by Lyon County Utilities, hooking into the Rolling A Wastewater Treatment Plant.

The higher-density residential section will be maintained by either a maintenance district or a homeowners association, Rotter said.

Lakemont/Wade will pave Fort Churchill Road, where the development begins, and will provide sites for a water tank and an infiltration well.

Dotson said about 64 percent of the 2,000-acre project will not be developed, leaving plenty of room for walkers, bicyclists and equestrians.

“There will be paths through the 12,000-square-foot lots and equestrian trails from the larger lots with a significant amount of open space,” she said.

She said there will be pullout spots for trailers near the equestrian trailheads, with trails on both sides of the river. Trails will also connect to U.S. Bureau of Land Management property north of the development.

The development will also include a 13-acre park on the western edge of the higher-density section, to be built with park tax funds, Dotson said.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 882-2111 ext. 351.