Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Key Projects & Costs

Key Projects & Costs
In July, 2009, Master Plan Ministries was able to purchase the Ranch free and clear with the help of many important donors. At this point, we have spent over $600,000 in renovating five buildings. Our immediate goal is to get the Main Lodge, Dining Hall and the Bunk House operational so that we could begin to 
use the Ranch for its intended ministry purposes. We will also need to complete the water system and the septic fields. All of these objectives can be done by the end of summer, 2012. 
 Once the ranch is operational, we will finish the 24 room Alpine Lodge and build the Assembly building.
We are looking for more interested donors that can help with these projects.
Below are listed the major projects and the estimated costs:

The Main Lodge has received a certificate of occupancy and can be used for small groups. It is fully functional even though we are doing some finish work. The cost to finish and equip is approximately $5,000.
Dinning Hall Kitchen to this point has been renovated with new electrical work, hydronic heating, roof truss strengthening, ceiling insulation, drywall, painting, lighting, septic tanks, new water line and related plumbing. To become operational, we need to install the ceiling hoods, ansul systems, electrical and propane stoves, sinks, dish washing system, counters, tables, boiler – hot water system and insulation. The estimated cost is $13,000.
Bunk House has been improved with both a men’s and women’s bathrooms, new interior walls, new roof trusses and roof, lighting, heating system, drywall, painting, new water line, tile floors as well as new walkways and handicap bathroom facilities.
What is needed is all the bathroom equipment: counters, sinks, toilets, stalls, urinals, mirrors, boiler, hot water system clothes washing tubs, handicap ramp,  second set of stairs to the top level, 35 bunk beds and mattresses and 5-7 second hand couches.  Estimated cost to finish $16,500.
Septic System for the Dining Hall and Bunk House needs only the completion of two septic fields. Estimated cost: $12,000
Water System has also had a lot of work. All the cisterns are in place, most of the water line has been installed. To finish, we will construct a water treatment building 12 feet x 16 feet to hold all the treatment equipment, pumps, and pressure tanks. Cost to finish: $22,500.
Total necessary to raise to become operational is $69,000.
After we finish the above projects, we can open the ranch for its intended ministry purposes. Then we will continue to renovating process and other listed projects.
Alpine Lodge has 24 hotel-like rooms, two levels and will be an excellent building for major retreats and conferences. We have already improved the foundations, build two large full length pony walls, leveled the building, put new electrical, new heating, painting, new railing and walkways, new roof trusses and roof were completed as well as a new water line installed.

The building needs to have all 24 rooms renovated and insulated, septic field including a 2000gal septic tank and a bio tank, plumbing re-done. Estimated cost is $100,000.
New Assembly Building is in the planning stages. The need is for larger meeting rooms. Presently, the largest meeting room is the Dinning Hall which can only accommodate 70-80 at best. We will need a large room that could seat 200 with a large kitchenette. Then we would need several more rooms that could seat 20-50 each.
This building will house the walk in basement which would be the recreational center of the ranch, the ground floor would the large room with kitchenette that could seat 200 people, and top floor would have smaller rooms for smaller groups. The estimated cost is $400,000
Land acquisition : There are two parcels of land that would truly fit with the ranch and its purposes. Both would open up a lot more access to the adjoining forest for hiking and many recreational opportunities.
Parcel # 1 is approximately 60 acres south of the Ranch, which has three larger ponds and mountain grasslands that could be used for boating, swimming, fishing and horses.  Cost to be negotiated.
Parcel # 2 is approximately 35 acres east of the Ranch which is heavily timbered with lots of trails for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding.
Cost to be negotiated.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

New Ranch Blog!!!

Three Trails Ranch has been a work in progress. We finally see the light at the end of the tunnel and are excited to tell you that ministry is finally happening at the Ranch. There is still a lot of work to do though, to become fully operational. Please check out the videos on the site for some new info and keep checking back as we will be updating the site a ton in the coming days. You can also follow the site for updates and progress reports (see options on the right hand side of this blog). We covet your prayers and would ask you to continue to pray that God will bring the construction phase to completion and prepare this wonderful place for many decades of fruitful ministry, preparing others to reach and influence the world for Christ. Feel free to check older post for past updates and follow this blog for future updates!

June 2011 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Update
June 2, 2011
   Finally, the snow and mud are gone, so we are getting ready to begin digging to install electrical lines, a water system and the septic system. Since our last update Feb.3rd, the Main Lodge has received a permanent Certificate of Occupancy (CO), which allows us to open it for smaller groups to use for ministry starting sometime this fall. This is a major milestone for this large project. We used the Main Lodge for our MPM Staff Retreat with 15 adults and 9 kids, and everything worked great.  This summer, two weddings will be taking place using this lodge. We also have three volunteer work groups coming from Arkansas, Louisiana and central Colorado.
    Another big issue was to save the Hotel, a $750,000 building, which finally happened with the new pony walls and grouting of all the concrete block walls. Now the Hotel is on a firm foundation, leveled, with a new truss system and roof. The Hotel at this point is around 70% finished and ready for use.
   We have been working on the Bunk House which is 85% finished on the sleeping part. The new attached bathrooms are around 50% done. Next week, the inside painting will begin, the showers stalls have also been installed. The Dining Hall kitchen is around 30% done. Our goal is to get all the infrastructure working so that we can use the Main Lodge, Bunk House and Dining Hall by this Fall.
   Please do not forget that we are doing another great “come and see” potluck/barbecue at the ranch June 11, from 1-9pm. MPM will bring the meat and drink for the barbecue. Please bring a side dish or dessert. This will be another good time of fellowship and looking at what God is doing to prepare a great ministry tool that will effect thousands of people for Christ. We will be doing tours and explaining the progress.
   To get to the ranch, go to the Lemon Dam and then go to the large sign on the right that says, Sierra Verde Estates; then turn right and go up the mountain for 2 miles to the ranch driveway which says 2038. Cross the bridge and park in the large parking lot on the right.
   We hope to see you at the barbecue. We are trusting God to continue to do great things here at Three Trails Ranch,
And, please forward this update onto anyone else that you think is interested in the purposes of this ministry ranch.
Russ & Linda Akins

February 2011 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Update
Feb. 3, 2011
   Since our last report and open house barbecue in August, 2010 a lot more construction has taken place with the building and the infrastructure. According to our main contractor, Dave Pearson, who expects the Staff House to be finished with final inspection by March 15. The Bunk House with the new bathrooms and the Dining Hall kitchen should be finished by May 1. Then, we will return to the digging and installation of the electrical, water and septic infrastructure. And possibly by Sept 1, we may have the place finished enough to become operational.
Here are the latest parts of the Ranch puzzle getting done:
Staff House (Main Lodge)
 - The third floor was insulated: R 49 ceiling and R 23 in the walls.
 - Finished painting the third floor and second floor office.
 - Tomorrow, the shelving will be installed – 3rd floor.
 - The interior doors and finish wood has been delivered, soon to be installed.
 - The walkway to the Hallway building from the Staff House has been built.
 - The outside third floor stairs down to the second floor walkway are almost finished.
 - The new 1 ½ inch water line has already been plumbed into the building.
 - The eastern second story deck is finished.
 - The aspen paneling is soon to be installed in the office.
 - Linda and Luann are looking for the right carpet to be installed in three weeks.
Bunk House
 - The walkways have been built, stairs soon to follow.
 - The sheetrock ceilings have been installed, soon to be painted.
 - The upper ceiling was insulated R49 and the bathroom walls – R23
 - The new metal roof was installed.
 - The interior pine walls were installed on the bottom floor, soon to be installed on the top
 - Plumbing in process in the bathrooms
Hotel (Adult Lodge) 48 rooms                                                                                         
 - Two full length concrete footers have been poured to support the pony walls, which will 
    level and provide great support, done by next week.
Dining Hall Kitchen -  We will start this project in earnest after the Bunk House and Staff
House are done.
Electrical System
 - Before the snow, we laid 480 feet of line to the Hotel and 100 feet to the Staff House.

Water System
 - Six 1800 gal, cisterns have been installed.
 - 200 feet of 2 inch black poly 200 psi water line has been installed with all the valves.
 - 80 feet of 1 ½ inch line has been installed and plumbed into the Staff House.
 - One fire hydrant was installed that sucks water from the bottom of the pond. It is the only    
    hydrant in the Lemon Dam area and will be available to fight forest fires up to ½ mile  
    away as well as used by the fire department for fighting residential fires in the area.
Septic System –  We hope to start in June.
Finances: So far, so good. But by June, we will be looking at the last part that was raised.
If necessary, we may need to raise additional funds.
   We appreciate your prayers for wisdom with all the details of this huge project and how we should use the last of the funds. This is really God’s project that needs to be done is God’s way. So we are rebuilding foundations, taking no shortcuts and making everything as safe and as beautiful as possible. We expect God to do great things in lives of many people that will come to this place.
   Our next Open House Barbecue/Potluck will be Saturday, June 11, from 1 pm to 8:30pm. We hope you can join us for a good look at what God is doing at Three Trails Ranch. 
   We would like to thank the very large team of people that have given financially, prayed or volunteered to help put this Great Commission Discipleship Ranch into reality.

To God be the Glory,
Russ Akins – 970-259-5768

August 2010 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Update
August 1, 2010
   Before the summer gets away, we are having an OPEN HOUSE FREE BARBECUE up at the ranch on Saturday, August 21 from 1pm to 8:30 pm. Serving will begin at 5pm near the Dining Hall. Master Plan will supply the meat and drink. If you would like to help, please bring a side dish of your choosing and it will be a great picnic with lots of great conversation and fellowship.
   At the barbecue, even though it is a construction zone, you can walk around and see the progress or take a tour and hear the details explained.
Our next large construction goal is to finish the Main Lodge (Staff House), the Dining Hall with the commercial kitchen and the Bunkhouse that sleeps 60 by Thanksgiving. We also need to 
install the new water treatment system, the septic system and the new electrical system. When this happens, we can become operational.
Bunk House Bathrooms have been framed with all the interior walls, and this week, we hope to install the roof trusses, sheeting and get the roof dried in and ready for the metal roof.
The electrician has begun the wiring on both floors.
The pond, which is the Ranch water supply, has been cleaned of all the old muck and debris from the last 30-50 years, which looks like it will double the water capacity. We have installed a large pre-filter concrete box which is the first of three filters that the water will go through. We expect to start filling the pond later this week. We are also installing a water weir that will measure our water rights.
The new 800 amp electrical service was installed underground in June. Our next step is to lay new cable to all the buildings and install the large electrical panel which will be indoors.
The large septic system was approved for construction by San Juan Health. We will begin as soon as possible.
As you can imagine, this is a huge project with great potential and vision. We are building this place to outlive us and be a fully functional Great Commission Training/discipleship facility that God can use to train and encourage authentic Christians to take the Gospel of Christ to many parts of the USA and the world. Please see the attached purpose statement.
We hope that you can join us for the barbecue in three weeks. If you have not been to the ranch yet, go to the Lemon Dam and go up Lemon Dam Road until you see a large sign on the right which says Sierra Verde Estates. Take that road for two miles which will go though a small subdivision. The ranch address is: 2038, which is prominently displayed. The gate is closed because of livestock. Just come on in and close the gate behind you. There is a large parking lot on the right. The ranch phone is 259-2354.
Sincerely in Christ,
Russ & Linda Akins, Master Plan Ministries,  970-259-5768

April 2010 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Progress Report
April 19, 2010
   The Great Commission/discipleship training ranch has seen a lot of progress since our last report on January 20th.  We have had snow storms every week and now rain as the spring thaw has begun.
  • At the Staff House or Main lodge: the third floor interior  walls are finished, sheet rocked, wired, painted, R-29 insulation in the walls and R-49 blown insulation in the ceiling, lights are installed and the electricity is on. The outdoor siding is finished, the second floor eastern deck with stairs to the ground is mostly done that connects to the southern walkway that connects to the third floor egress deck which is also mostly done. The tile work is finished in two of three bathrooms.
  • At the hotel on Feb. 22, half of the roof collapsed under only two feet of snow. The roof had only a 2x4 rafter system that had lasted over 30 years through a lot more snow than we had. We decided the best thing was to take the complete roof down and install heavy duty engineered trusses. The process took four weeks, but now we have a strong roof with metal roofing so that the snow can slide off better. Presently, we are working through the details with the insurance company which should help us to at least break even financially. Even though we had snow storms every week, we were able to avoid water damage in the open hotel rooms. This week, we are leveling and putting in strong pony walls on concrete under the major floor beams.
  • At the Dining Hall: we are just getting started. It is a larger project than we had thought.
We have taken out all the existing cabinets, the ceiling, the R-39 insulation bats, exposed the wiring and lighting, the rafter system, all of which have problems that need to be fixed and brought up to code. So we gusseted all the rafters and strengthen all the ceiling timbers. The walls need studs, insulation and more wiring.
   We need to have a commercial kitchen plan and approval from a heath inspector before we put in the stoves and other appliances.
  • The Bunk House is rated to sleep 64 in bunk beds. We are starting this project by digging the foundation to add public bathrooms. In the next two weeks, we will pour the foundation and get ready to dismantle the roof structure and install the right trusses and roof structure.
  • In May and June, we will be installing a new water system, a new septic system, and a new electrical  system for all five buildings.
   During the summer, we will be putting on free barbecues for anyone interested in seeing the Ranch and its potential as a Great Commission Training Center. The first open barbecue will be Saturday June 5th, from 1pm to dark, serving will begin at 6 pm. We hope you can join us for one of the barbecues this summer and to see what God is preparing to increase His kingdom worldwide.
Sincerely in Christ,
Russ & Linda Akins, Master Plan Ministries, 970-259-5768

January 2010 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Progress Report
January 20, 2010
   The Great Commission Training ranch continues to become a reality in spite of the snow and cold. We work outside on good days and inside on stormy days. In the last two months, most of the work has been focused on the Hotel and the Main Lodge (Staff House). We have now been through 5 or 6 successful code inspections.
  • At the Staff House, all the concrete work has been done for the overhead deck and third floor egress walkways, which will be built later this winter. This week, the structural and plumbing inspection has allowed for the drywall and insulation crews to begin today on the third floor. On the bottom floor, we are finishing the large utility room with aspen paneling which we hope to use in more places. We are also in the process of trying to get a solar grant so that we can install solar heating and hot water.  But I need help in writing the solar grants.
  • At the Hotel, the north and part of the east foundational walls have been replaced with solid concrete walls, drainage pipe installed below the concrete cap on the east side. This week, all the framing and part of the decking was completed on the walkways and overhead porches. Next week, under the large crawl space, the two 88 foot floor joices will be sistered together, leveled, and then two pony walls will be installed on concrete footers that will level the floor. As Jerry, the inspector commented, “ You guys are bringing the Hotel back from the dead.”
  • We are also getting the details and drawings worked out with allthe infrastructure (new electrical service, water system, septic system) that needs to be installed in May. There will be a lot of ditches going to and from all the buildings.
  • The Bunk House, which can sleep 64 has been cleaned out, new larger bathrooms to be added, new trusses and roof and other structural issues will be taken care of before spring.
   We continue to hear from other ministries that want to use the Ranch for its intended Great Commission purpose. Within the scope of MPM, we are brainstorming on the types of conferences and retreats that we would like to conduct to stimulate others to become spiritual multipliers.
   Please continue to pray that God’s will shall take place in the building and operation of Three Trails Ranch. We expect it to be a great place of spiritual transformation and training for the Great Commission of Christ, Matt. 28:18-20
Sincerely in Christ,
Russ Akins 

October 2009 Update

Three Trails Ranch – Progress Report 
October Update – 09
   Each day there is progress, but it is a huge project. I think that most of the surprises of what has to be fixed is over. I have come to conclude that this place must have all the infrastructure redone which includes the water system, septic system, phone lines, electrical service, commercial kitchen and all the buildings brought up to code. It is quite the challenge and winter is coming soon, which will shut down all the outside work. 
Here is some of what has happened in the last month:
  • We have stained three of the five buildings. It took 100 gallons.
I will need to order another 100 gallons to finish.
  • We bought two 40 foot zercon storage containers so that we could organize all the building materials and tools that were scattered everywhere in various places. For example, we now know where all the plumbing parts can be found, etc.etc. This will allow us to be a lot more effective and to use what we already have.
  • We just completed the water diversion dam on the creek that gives us all our water and will help us to preserve our precious water rights. It took 16 yards of concrete, two head gates and is now hooked up to the pipe that will bring the water to our larger pond.
  • The pond is presently empty so that we can clean and expand it to hold more water. We have taken 500 yards of dark rich sediment soil out and will probably take out another 500 yards before refilling the pond, which we hope to do soon so that we can play hockey and broomball with the college students this winter. What a great evangelistic tool that will be for our students to invite new people.
  • We finally got the repair permit for the Hotel (the adult guest house), so we have just done the first pour which took 21 yards of concrete. We will need to do 5 more sequential concrete pours, which we hope to do in November.
  • Steve Burch, the vehicle mechanic has now resurrected a total of 6 vehicles; they are all running including three buses.
Thanks for believing and praying that God can build this place into a Great Commission Discipleship Center that will be able to train and sent Christians to spiritually multiply around the world. Please see the attached pictures.
Sincerely in Christ,
Russ Akins

August 2009 Update

August Update – 09
   Four weeks ago, we purchased this isolated property which includes 17acres with five buildings and a large pond located above the Lemon Dam with US Forest access. There is a lot of work needed to bring the place up to all county codes before it can become operational as a Great Commission Discipleship Training facility. Our goal is to get this place operational within the next six months or less. It is located in one of the most isolated and beautiful parts of Colorado. (Please see
attached Vision Statement and pictures)
   At this point, I am working with three engineers, an architect, three contractors, a plumber, a diesel mechanic and a bunch of volunteer college students. The students are helping with the clean-up and the staining of the main lodge.
Things that have happened so far:
  • The “wall fix” for the staff house engineered by Rick Johnson has been completed and will be inspected later this week.
  • The second septic tank for the staff house was installed by Roy and David Brown last Friday.
  • The diesel mechanic, Steve Burch, from Empire Electric, has resurrected three vehicles which are now running including the large dump truck.
  • The official drawings to fix the foundations and walkways for the 24 room hotel have been completed by Bill Birza, PE and architect Mirah. We should have the permit soon and work begun by next week.
  • A new pump has been installed in the commercial well, which is now being tested for the quantity and quality of water of water to be used with a 10,000 gallon cistern to supply all five buildings.
  • We are also working on the design drawings for the commercial kitchen, the Bunk House and new restrooms, the all purpose barn building with its modifications, and the staff house balconies and walkways.
Prayer request:
 - Please pray for God’s favor to be upon this place and on all the plans and workers.
 - Pray for our introduction to the people who live in that area that they will see an 
   authentic credible Christian testimony by what we do and how we relate to them.
Sincerely in Christ,
Russ Akins, Master Plan Ministries – 970-769-7620

May 2009 Update

Dear Praying Crew,

Here is the latest news on the developing story of Three Trails Ranch.

1. Last week, I took Roy Brown, Brown Brothers Consturction up to see the place. He wants to do the Septic systems and the water system.
Roy is a great Christian man; I have worked with him on several large projects as Cascade Lodge.

2. Gerry, I had Roy look at the pond as to expanding and deeping the pond with an excavator. Roy did not think he would have a problem getting his machinery in place and adding 25% more volumn to the far end of the pond.

3. I took pictures of the cracked hotel foundation and showed them to Nathan Zick, a concrete contractor, who thinks we can pull out the old blocks and replace it with a poured wall. Dave Pearson was talking about 
pouring at least two footers lengthwise and putting up  "pony" walls to secure the building before doing the cracked foundation. I am sure this will take alot more thinking and good organization and maybe a few jacks.

4. Nathan Rambo is now living up there in the staff house. The gate is locked when Nathan is not there. This seems to be working out just fine.

5. We received the Appraisal finally - here are the figures:
    - As is - $915,000
    - Once it is fixed up - $ 1,515,000

   We have presently received $61,000.

6. Nate and I continue to talk share the project with people from across the country and in Durango. We have gotten the word out to alot of places and have talked with a number of people that could help in a big way if God works on their heart and mind. Please continue to pray for God to make His will easily seen. The Grant writer is also writing on our behalf to many foundations for one million dollars.

7. This week-end is the May Men's retreat up at Cascade Lodge Friday night and all day on Saturday ending around 9pm. It will be on sex, money and power. We are expecting 60-80 men. Please join us if you can.

For God's glory and future eternal fruit,

April 2009 Update

Dear Everyone, 

1. We have come up with a new name for the place: Three Trails Ranch, which has a hidden meaning and has a western sound. The hidden meaning is all about spiritual transformation which is the internal spiritual purpose of the place. Everyone will come to the ranch riding on one of three trails (in life). The first trail is the basic non-Christian trail looking for answers, the second trail is the defeated Christian walking in the flesh and really needs get to the third trail, which is the Christian that is growing and bearing fruit and seeing Christ live His life supernaturally through him. What do you think?

2. The Appraisal should be done this week.

3. Roy Brown, who wants to do the septic work wants to go up and see the place this week.

4. Gabe and Darrin who worked on the place along with Dave and myself hope to go through the place together and get a better idea of what they did and where we can pick up some of their ideas.

5. Nathan Rambo should be moving up there this week as the snow is melting out fairly well. He will act as security and keep the gate locked.

6. Every Saturday I am hosting a tour for interested people to get the vision of what this place can and will become. It will begin at 10am at the place. Have anyone you invite call me so I know they are coming.

7. Financially, we have received or have pledged $60,000. We hope to see that increase alot this week.

8. The grant writer wrote today and said that he is applying to 60 -70 foundations on our behalf. He said that he would not take our project if he did not think that he could raise the total amount. But is not sure that it could be done before the May 31 deadline.

Lastly, we are in the position to only trust God to bring in all the funds even though He will probably use us in the process, so let us all keep it before the Lord everyday in focused prayer. I really believe that thousands of young people will be directly affected by the ministry training that they will receive at the ranch and many more will hear the Gospel because of their word.


March 2009 Update

Dear Everyone,

This last week ( March 22-28) has added a few more things.

1. The Code office has given permission for Nathan Rambo to stay in the Staff House, He will act as security and keep the gate closed and locked, so that no one can just drive in and poke around. This is needed.

2. On the 25th, MPM and 4 to 4 Ministries did sign an agreement to purchase the property pending MPM ability to raise the $1,000,000 by May 31, 2009. Gerry McDaniel was very helpful in this. Thanks, Gerry.

3. Nate and I have mailed out nearly 400 info packets to possible supporters around the country. Everyone is excited about the possibility that we have talked with and thinks that we should get this place. The money is just beginning to come in. If anyone needs more packets to share with others, please let me know. I will get them to you soon.

4. On Saturday, I took two appraisers up to do a walk through of the property. They asked alot of questions and were quite surprised as to what they saw. In two weeks, we should have the appraisal.

5. Nate is working on a Power Point presentation for churches. Two churches have asked for a presentation.

6. There is a growing interest for people to go up and see the place, which is quite visionary. So I am setting up the first tour on Saturday,
April 11th at 10am. If you know of people that you would like to expose to the place, tell them to call me or be at the entrance at 10am.

7. Both of our websites are finished and operational. If you have not seen them yet: www.spiritualmultiplication.com and www.CrushFear.com 

In conclusion, please continue pray for Nate and  I and several other people that are helping us to raise the needed finances. 

Russ Akins