General Location

The Knaus Ranch is located on the top ridge of a beautiful cedar and Spanish oak covered mountain top range known as the Callahan Divide, about 12 miles Southwest of Abilene, Texas and some 150 miles west of Fort Worth,  and about 8 miles south of Interstate 20. 
Abilene is a city of about 115,000 people and is located about 12 miles east of the ranch. The deer and turkey hunting area of the ranch is approximately 1500 acres  The ranch's fences are all low fences (as opposed to 9' high game fences). All of our hunts are considered fair chase hunting.
We have a few real big trophy bucks, and quite a few  regular size bucks up to 12 points. Some of these bucks will gross out about 200 lbs. And large flocks of Rio Grande Turkeys.
For folks that use GPS, our location is N32 18.425 W099 53.707 for the center point of the compound. A helicopter pad is available. The elevation of the pad is 2383' above sea level. (Check in with a cell phone for exact landing instructions and pad location.) Cell phone number is 325 665 9444. The helicopter pad is just West of the bunk house about 200 Feet, but, within our compound.
 The view from our camp is one of the most superb views of  West Texas.  Clear and clean Texas air, a beautiful  mountain view, and beautiful country side. In late October and early November, the Oak  leaves change to a bright red color with a few bright yellow leaves to spice it up.  Spring time brings in all of the trees, flowers, grass, and food plots turning to deep green colors and the wild flowers at their most beautiful setting preparing for a color parade season before the summer heat arrives. The photo below is a view on a web cam looking out the main door toward the east.
  • We have no traffic, only  the moan of a distant freight train, and the mating whistle of a bob-white quail makes the ranch not only fun, but very restful and relaxing. Then too, we have our local resident turkeys calling even here at the main compound. We don't have many people to just 'Drop By'. Being off the main road some 3 miles this far out; a passer-by must be coming to see us, or that traveler is just lost.
    Our camp is in a  remote area (on the very top of a mountain (The Callahanridge) and about 3 miles to the nearest road) however, the road to the highway is plenty good for arriving or departing is nearly all kinds of weather. We do have the best of both worlds with electricity, satellite and local TV, DSL for broad band computer contact. Central air and plenty of wonderful deep well water, and one of the most complete cooking facilities around this area (gas stoves, smokers, wood steak grills, micro ovens, etc, etc.)
    The old Overland Stage Coach ruts are still visible crossing the ranch along with a few Indian arrowheads scattered here and there especially around the banks of the creeks, and some WWII shells and casings left over when the ranch was a part of Camp Barkley, a US Army facility during the second  world war.  The ranch's front gate opens to an 1800's cattle trail known as the Butterfield Trail. Now days that old trail is called 'The Butterfield Highway or even some folks call it Texas Highway 277 to San Angelo, Texas. There is a lot of history both on and off the ranch here.

     In 1991 We began rebuilding the fences, planting  food plots for our wildlife (we have about 50 acres in plots), building the hunting blinds (we have 7 fully equipped-all weather blinds). These blinds are made of metal and insulated walls and ceiling plus a floor covering of thick carpet. The windows may be opened or closed and provide excellent viewing of the area.

    Most of our hunters use a blind (or some folks call them 'Hunting Houses) to work out of as a kind of  headquarters. These blinds are especially handy for our deer and turkey hunters to have a central place to work out of and somewhere to go if you get wet, cold or hungry. You can stash your food, water, misc. other gear in the blind for a semi permanent location and hunt away from the blind in the canyons, creeks, etc. or you can hunt from the blinds. Each blind has at least one feeder in sight. The blinds are insulated and warm and they protect you from the winter winds, snow and rain.

    All of our hunting areas are separated by fences. Each hunting area is about 160 acres, however, two of these hunting areas are 320 acres. Staying in a specific area and near or around the blind is especially important if the snow or fog gets thick and you simply can not see, but, we know where you are supposed to be and will come after you. Many people have ask 'do cell phones work out here ?'. The answer is yes in most of all of our hunting areas. Sometimes you have to climb a little higher, but there is contact in every area that we hunt in. So good idea to bring your phone.  AT&T seems to work best here, but SPRINT works in some of the area.

    We now have 13 gravity flow feeders that we feed 20% protein for the deer and turkey during the early spring when animals are birthing or hatching. During the hunting seasons we usually add corn to the programmed feeding.  I don't really think that  corn  helps the deer but the corn serves more as a treat. The deer and turkeys seem to like the corn better than the straight protein. I suppose this somewhat applies to me too.  I will continue to feed and take care of the deer and turkey with both corn and protein. During the Spring Turkey season we feed mostly milo or other similar grain by pouring the grain along to roads and near a water source.

     Then, too, we feed a pickup load of bread about every 30 days for the turkeys, quail, dove, wild hogs, etc. Additionally, we have placed 5 new quail and dove feeders in strategic  places. We have lots of quail, but the dove seem to move out the day dove season opens and we don't see them until the season is over. We build all of our own feeders.  These feeders are all pretty special as you will see. All of our feeder are gravity fed. None of the feeders are on a timer. I don't really think that is fair.

    Our bunkhouse and cook houses are complete with telephones, TV's and central air and heat and DSL and Direct TV.   The beds are 2  twin beds, 2 extra long twins, and two 3/4 beds. The bunkhouse is a four bedroom house, with a living room and two bathrooms with showers, sinks and johns. The usual things for all bath rooms. And summer, spring or winter we have central air and heat and a big fireplace that burns about anything. We usually use oak or mesquite or big stumps we find in the pasture. All buildings are No Smoking Areas"

      We do have our fair share of snakes, horned toads, lizards, mountain boomers, mountain lions, bobcats, wild pigs, and lots of road runners. Seems as though we have a sample of every bird, animal, reptile, and insect in the country. And, just recently one of our hunters shot the first javelina hogs in the area. I didn't think we had the Mexican hogs, but now we have both the javelinas and the feral hogs.  The feral hogs are much larger animals, but, they  have no tusks and don't smell as bad as the Mexican hogs.  However, they are pretty good eating. Some of the hogs weigh up to 450 lbs. The good eating ones usually weigh about 200 lbs. These hogs are rough to hunt since they have very keen eye site and can smell a hunter about a mile away.


    This is a photo from the web cam Looking east toward Abilene from our compound on the Mountain top







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