Ken Caryl offers 4,800 acres of open space with 45 miles of private trails

With more than 45 miles of private trails over 4,800 acres of open space, Ken Caryl residents experience the best of life in the foothills.

Residents wear ID bracelets to use the trails for hiking, mountain biking, or horseback riding. The trails are patrolled regularly.

The area’s beauty and ambiance make Ken Caryl Ranch and Ken Caryl Valley attractive to homebuyers, says Luke Corbitt, 8z real estate agent.

“People are drawn by the outdoor amenities and love the fact that they can ride or hike these trails that are private,” Corbitt says. “In other areas, mountain bikers are used to dealing with hordes of people. Here, you can ride out of your garage and enjoy trails in the valley that aren’t open to the public. That’s a huge thing.”

Ken Caryl residents tend to work in Boulder or Denver. “It’s a mix,” Corbitt says. “There are people who work at Lockheed (Marting Space Systems) and some who work at the Tech Center or in downtown Denver.”

Although the commute to work might be a little longer from Ken Caryl, the area’s beauty makes up for it.

“You have the full Colorado experience at your fingertips,” says Corbitt, whose family built a house in Ken Caryl Valley in 1983 and grew up in the area.

“My parents still live in the same house. Now my kids get to go to my old stomping grounds when they go to see their grandparents.”

What’s available?

The housing stock is primarily single-family homes built in the 1980s. Most of the houses are two-stories or multi-level and typically range from 3,000 to 4,500 square feet. They sit on lots that are 1/5 of an acre to 1/3 of an acre. Larger houses on bigger lots with better views cost more, Corbitt says.

The average price is $685,000 in Ken Caryl Ranch and $1.2 million in Ken Caryl Valley. Between October 2020 and October 2021, properties appreciated more than 17 percent in Ken Caryl Ranch and more than 20 percent in Ken Caryl Valley.

Like other areas in Jefferson County, Ken Caryl was popular with homebuyers who wanted more space during the pandemic.

Corbitt cautions that homes in Ken Caryl rarely turn over and sell in a few days. “They’re a hot commodity.”

Who’s moving in?

New buyers are typically young families drawn by the schools’ quality and the fact that students have a nearby kindergarten-through-eighth grade option, so they don’t have to leave the area for school until they attend high school.

First-time buyers are rare but occasionally do purchase homes in Ken Caryl. Most buyers, however, are moving up into their second or third homes.

Community amenities

In addition to its trail system, Ken Caryl is close to Chatfield State Park, Deer Creek Canyon Park, South Valley Park, and the Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms. Chatfield Farms is a 700-acre native plant refuge and working farm in southern Jefferson County.

The Historic Manor House is a popular venue for weddings and special events. The house was built as a summer home for John Charles Shaffer and his family. He and his wife purchased the first 2,660 acres of Ken Caryl Ranch and named the property for their sons Kent and Carrol. Frank E. Edbrooke, known for his work on the Brown Palace and other prominent Denver buildings, designed the colonial-style home, which included 20 rooms, six baths, and an 80-foot living room with mirrored fireplaces at each end.

The news and editorial staffs of The Denver Post had no role in this post’s preparation.

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