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Desertsunburn

BLM - NEW RULES - READ THIS

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So the question begs....Is "prospecting" "mining" according to this act??

Jim

Well Congress doesn't think mining is prospecting. They are clear about that in several acts besides the Wilderness Act.

There seems to be some misunderstanding about the nature of mineral withdrawals. The Courts have made it clear that the specific language of each mineral withdrawal is the limit of the restriction. You need to read the withdrawal law or order to know whether prospecting is prohibited.

Some mineral withdrawals remove the land from the "operation of the mining laws" while most just prohibit "location and entry". Those that prohibit "location and entry" leave open prospecting and exploration.

In the Wilderness Act Congress only withdrew the land from "appropriation" under the mining laws.

"minerals in lands designated by this Act as wilderness areas are withdrawn from all forms of appropriation under the mining laws"
That you can not make a claim to the land where minerals are found does not restrict you from looking for them.

Congress understood the limits they were setting and went even further by explaining specifically that prospecting was allowed. They obviously also understood that the executive agencies would try to get around their intent by their own interpretations so they included explanations in the "Special Provisions" section. Read the Congressional Record from 1964 if you think I'm just blowing smoke. The debates in Congress over the Wilderness Act were about the same issues we are discussing here.

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Thanks for putting up the link to the Wilderness Act Bill. Scroll down to the "Special Provisions" section and you can see that it is not me saying you can prospect the wilderness but Congress that made the right to prospect part of the Wilderness Act.

The region around Gold Basin has two wilderness'. The Mount Tipton Wilderness just East of Dolan Springs and the Mount Wilson Wilderness just East of Hwy 93 as you enter Nevada from the South. Prospecting is allowed in both of these wilderness' just as in all National Wilderness'.

As far as people being arrested for prospecting in wilderness I will chalk that up to internet rumor until someone actually produces a case, I have found none. Considering that the law specifically states that prospecting is allowed in wilderness I can't imagine what law would be cited as the cause for arrest.

The Wilderness Act is Federal law governing federal lands designated as wilderness. State lands have their own rules, regulations and laws.

Hi Clay, here in AZ many if not most areas have a protected species of something involved as in the Kofa link I added and this then voids all forms of mining or development...

I may have added some to my post right after you read it so here it is again, if a critter or plant is involved it is a no go... The greenies have been tagging areas with endangered species status for quite a spell now to keep folks like us out.

http://www.wildernes...ps&sec=legisact

From wilderness act of 1964

This Act initially protected 54 wilderness areas (9.1 million acres) by withdrawing them from standard multiple use management and established a process for adding new lands to the National Wilderness Preservation System. Lands classified as wilderness through the Wilderness Act could be under jurisdiction of the Forest Service, National Park Service, or Fish and Wildlife Service (The Bureau of Land Managment did not manage wilderness until passage of the Forest Land Policy and Management Act in 1976). With some exceptions, prohibitions include closure to motorized and mechanized vehicles, timber harvest, new grazing and mining activity, or any kind of development.

This act now includes millions more acres across the country.

Are you saying these areas are open to prospecting? I think maybe it is the "type" of protected area we are talking about? Arizona has many closed areas to protect some critter or even plants.

The area near Franconia asked about is home to a protected species of Horned Toad so would likely be included though I have never heard of anyone being bothered for collecting meteorites there... Yet.

Many areas here in AZ are tagged this way and tied in with the endangered species act which gives the land "Refuge" status, seems they like mining areas as well since many cover some very rich areas like Kofa Wilderness area, here is their guidelines for use.This is what I am talking about and I think prospecting in such an area will get you in deep do-do if caught.

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Not so sure I agree with a lot of this. Hunters usually pay a property owner very well for meteorites found on their property. On a recent fall owners were being paid 50% and that is a fact!

A $10,000 stone would pay the owner $5,000 on the spot.

$10 permits would simply put more burden on the Taxpayer....BS.

Jim

I agree 100%. if you are speaking of professionals on a new fall.

It is the "usually" in your statement that is the clincher. A recent fall is one thing and a find is quite another. Hunters are ethical and pay property owners well when the sky goes "boom" and it rains rocks. That isn't always the case with finds though and we both know it. I see fellows every day hunting on private land in Glorieta with no permission. Most don't even bother to ask. And the same goes for Correo, Portales and Odessa. And I have seen hunters claim that a met was found on private land (where they had permission to hunt) when it was actually found on Nat Forest or on another land owners property where permission was not obtained. And many meteorites have been found on private land under the pretenses of just being a hobbyist and then sold with no compensation to the land owner at all. So it is not a game that is being played only by sparkling white souls.

And if a fellow found a good find on BLM land he is just as apt to be as creative. Not everyone. But it'll happen just like you say...Ethics will go out the window due to the regulation.

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Here is a response...

Dear Mr. Wooddell: The application fee is dependent on the time it takes for BLM to process the project proposal in the application. This would be determined by the field office manager after the application is submitted and reviewed. These fees would be estimated for you prior to the processing of the application, and would include monitoring fees as well. The permit application/ permit is 2920-1 attached; fees would be on page 2 when a permit is issued. Some examples of what the fees would be can be found on the following web site and one example is attached. http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/more/lands.html You mentioned a ;nation-wide; permit in your email. BLM issues permits on a local level, and at maximum could be on a state-wide level, for lands that we administer in the Western States. Thank you,Lucia Kuizon

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Here is the clincher as and is part of the 1964 Act... From Kofa Wilderness Area,

Leave No Trace

All pets must be confined unless they are sporting dogs assisting with a hunt of quail and/or cottontail rabbits. Amplified music is not permitted. Wood may be collected outside of wilderness areas for campfires provided it is down, dead, and detached. No wood may be collected to take off the refuge for home use. Collecting of rocks and minerals, prospecting, and treasure hunting is prohibited, except that surface collecting of rocks is permitted inside a 1.5 square mile area known as Crystal Hill. Possession of rocks there is limited to 10 specimens or 10 pounds (whichever comes first) within any 12-month period. Limited hunting is permitted within State and Federal guidelines. Please contact the Refuge Manager for more details. All vehicles, including trailers, dirt bikes, quads and UTVs must remain on designated roads. No off-roading is permitted. Vehicles may be parked no further than 100 feet from the designated roads, although tents, table, etc. may be placed further from the designated roads. Camping is limited to 14 nights within any 12 consecutive month period. All vehicles must be registered and insured, and all drivers must be licensed. ATVs and quads must be registered as "street legal."

Reading this you also find the reference to 10 pounds of collected material at crystal hill, so they are lumping meteorite collecting in with rock collecting regulations now.

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The BLM itself holds the patent records for the Barringer Crater in Northern Arizona so I can only assume they really are joking. The Barringer Meteor Crater is a 640 acre patented mining claim. The claim was based on the metals found in the meteorite.

This is the fatal flaw and reason none of these memos are put down in law. Barringer Crater is a bit of a different animal, as I believe that claim was staked before Arizon was a state. But still, it's all BS like 99.95% of the federal government.

I do not hunt meteorites casually, I hunt with intent and purpose; therefore, this memo does not apply to me.

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Well Congress doesn't think mining is prospecting. They are clear about that in several acts besides the Wilderness Act.

There seems to be some misunderstanding about the nature of mineral withdrawals. The Courts have made it clear that the specific language of each mineral withdrawal is the limit of the restriction. You need to read the withdrawal law or order to know whether prospecting is prohibited.

Some mineral withdrawals remove the land from the "operation of the mining laws" while most just prohibit "location and entry". Those that prohibit "location and entry" leave open prospecting and exploration.

In the Wilderness Act Congress only withdrew the land from "appropriation" under the mining laws. That you can not make a claim to the land where minerals are found does not restrict you from looking for them.

Congress understood the limits they were setting and went even further by explaining specifically that prospecting was allowed. They obviously also understood that the executive agencies would try to get around their intent by their own interpretations so they included explanations in the "Special Provisions" section. Read the Congressional Record from 1964 if you think I'm just blowing smoke. The debates in Congress over the Wilderness Act were about the same issues we are discussing here.

Clay, well said. However, Congress no longer controls the doing of most federal agencies and these agencies, such are the DOI just do whatever they want. I've spoke to Senators about this and they are beside themselves and powerless.

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What's to stop someone from filing a mining claim in a known strewn field for minerals commonly found in meteorites, and then "mining" only the meteorite stones for your "minereals"?

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Hi Clay, here in AZ many if not most areas have a protected species of something involved as in the Kofa link I added and this then voids all forms of mining or development...

I may have added some to my post right after you read it so here it is again, if a critter or plant is involved it is a no go... The greenies have been tagging areas with endangered species status for quite a spell now to keep folks like us out.

http://www.wildernes...ps&sec=legisact

From wilderness act of 1964

This Act initially protected 54 wilderness areas (9.1 million acres) by withdrawing them from standard multiple use management and established a process for adding new lands to the National Wilderness Preservation System. Lands classified as wilderness through the Wilderness Act could be under jurisdiction of the Forest Service, National Park Service, or Fish and Wildlife Service (The Bureau of Land Managment did not manage wilderness until passage of the Forest Land Policy and Management Act in 1976). With some exceptions, prohibitions include closure to motorized and mechanized vehicles, timber harvest, new grazing and mining activity, or any kind of development.

This act now includes millions more acres across the country.

Are you saying these areas are open to prospecting? I think maybe it is the "type" of protected area we are talking about? Arizona has many closed areas to protect some critter or even plants.

The area near Franconia asked about is home to a protected species of Horned Toad so would likely be included though I have never heard of anyone being bothered for collecting meteorites there... Yet.

Many areas here in AZ are tagged this way and tied in with the endangered species act which gives the land "Refuge" status, seems they like mining areas as well since many cover some very rich areas like Kofa Wilderness area, here is their guidelines for use.This is what I am talking about and I think prospecting in such an area will get you in deep do-do if caught.

I was not addressing the Endangered Species Act but instead the Wilderness Act. I can find no provision in the ESA that prevents prospecting of any kind. Mining operations that require a Plan of Operations are a subject of the ESA but that is all about agency "action" and not specifically about mining. Since no agency "action" is required for anything but "significant surface disturbance" there is no ESA involved in prospecting, exploration, location or entry. Unless, of course, you are using marbled murrelets as shovels. :D

To be ticketed or arrested there must be a violation of a law. All laws are public information. I just now reviewed the ESA and can find nothing restricting mining in any way. I am far from an expert on the ESA but until someone can show me a law that suspends the mining acts where there are endangered species I'm guessing those restrictions on prospecting are all about agency wishes and BS and not about any laws.

We regularly see gov agencies make false statements about their powers. Brochures and pronouncements are not laws. Memorandums do not have the legal force of laws or even regulations. Try to remember when confronted with agency BS that they have NO liability under the law for false, incomplete or misleading statements.

p.s. Desert Tortoises DO make nice shovels but that's a no-no now.

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Man I got some spots I would like to detect at the Kofa Wilderness for sure, but may not be able to afford the cost of proving them wrong in court sadly. I did challenge a ranger at Lynx Creek area once and won by calling his boss, but at Kofa things would be different and an arrest would surly follow getting caught detecting in there as it is aggressively patrolled for some reason....

Thanks for your input Clay!

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I posted the fee structure at Desertsunburn that the BLM sent me. There are two fees. The permit fee and a monitoring fee. initially about $100 to $1100.

Bill, can I attach it here??? It's a PDF.

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Here is the clincher as and is part of the 1964 Act... From Kofa Wilderness Area,

Leave No Trace

All pets must be confined unless they are sporting dogs assisting with a hunt of quail and/or cottontail rabbits. Amplified music is not permitted. Wood may be collected outside of wilderness areas for campfires provided it is down, dead, and detached. No wood may be collected to take off the refuge for home use. Collecting of rocks and minerals, prospecting, and treasure hunting is prohibited, except that surface collecting of rocks is permitted inside a 1.5 square mile area known as Crystal Hill. Possession of rocks there is limited to 10 specimens or 10 pounds (whichever comes first) within any 12-month period. Limited hunting is permitted within State and Federal guidelines. Please contact the Refuge Manager for more details. All vehicles, including trailers, dirt bikes, quads and UTVs must remain on designated roads. No off-roading is permitted. Vehicles may be parked no further than 100 feet from the designated roads, although tents, table, etc. may be placed further from the designated roads. Camping is limited to 14 nights within any 12 consecutive month period. All vehicles must be registered and insured, and all drivers must be licensed. ATVs and quads must be registered as "street legal."

Reading this you also find the reference to 10 pounds of collected material at crystal hill, so they are lumping meteorite collecting in with rock collecting regulations now.

That's not the law Bill. That is probably from some brochure.

The KOFA (King Of Arizona Mine) Wilderness was created by Act of Congress as part of the Arizona Desert Wilderness Act.

Congress was very specific about the changed status of minerals within the KOFA wilderness.

WITHDRAWALS FOR KOFA NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE

Sec. 506. Subject to valid existing rights, all federally owned

lands within the Kofa National Wildlife Refuge as of the date of

enactment of this title are hereby withdrawn from all forms of—

(a) entry, appropriation, or disposal under the public land

laws;

(b) location, entry, and patent under the United States

mining laws; and

© disposition under all laws pertaining to mineral and

geothermal leasing.

Nothing in there restriction prospecting. Only Location, Entry and Patent.

Seems the KOFA managers are doing a little fibbing? Heavens forbid! A government agency printing BS!

Here is what the BLM Manual has to say in their internal instructions to their agents:

a. Background. Sections 4(d)(2) and 4(d)(3) of the Wilderness Act describe how

minerals and mining activities are to be managed in wilderness areas. The BLM

manages mineral resources within designated wilderness to honor valid existing

rights while preserving wilderness character to the greatest extent possible. As

provided for under the Wilderness Act, the BLM also permits activities related

to gathering information about mineral resources to the extent that they are

compatible with the preservation of wilderness character.

b. Gathering information on Minerals, Section 4(d)(2) specifies that nothing in

the Wilderness Act prevents “any activity, including prospecting, carried out for

the purpose of gathering information about mineral or other resources, if such

activity is carried out in a manner compatible with the preservation of the

wilderness environment.” In accordance with this, the BLM will not authorize

an otherwise prohibited use (as set forth in Section 4© (see 1.6.B of this

manual) or an activity that would impair wilderness character (see 1.6.A.2 of

this manual) for the purpose of gathering information about mineral resources

within wilderness.

Section 4(d)(2) of the Wilderness Act also requires that wilderness areas be

surveyed for minerals and other resources by the United States Geological

Survey on a recurring basis. The BLM will ensure that motor vehicles,

motorized equipment, mechanical transport, the landing of aircraft, and any

structures or installations are used in this effort only if they are the minimum

tools required for conducting the surveys.

Internally they follow the law but in their Brochures and hand outs they deny it.

I'll stick with the law. I find their public information entertaining but uninformative. :rolleyes:

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I posted the fee structure at Desertsunburn that the BLM sent me. There are two fees. The permit fee and a monitoring fee. initially about $100 to $1100.

Bill, can I attach it here??? It's a PDF.

You should be able to Jim.... Look in the BBcode options next to eraser above when posting.

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Here is the current fee schedule I was sent.  this is in use now...

IM2011-182_att1.pdf

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Sounds like it's time to sell the detector and buy more guns/ammo :nutty:

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Yeah Clay, wish I was younger and possessing the funds for the court fight because there is some nice gold I know about in there.....

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Here is the current fee schedule I was sent. this is in use now...

:grr01:

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Yeah Clay, wish I was younger and possessing the funds for the court fight because there is some nice gold I know about in there.....

Just tell me where and I'll split the take with you. :hahaha:

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Our government continues to make outlaws out of all of us! So, Bill...where exactly is the spot you like? :brows:

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Yeah...When I went out and piddled around eastern Arizona I wound up gravitating to the KOFA from the Quartzsite area. Passed a big ol' sign that you couldn't miss not too far down the road from an old cabin that had been all dolled up and had a stuffed dummy sitting inside. I am sure a lot of you fellers know exactly the spot. Anyhoo I have always wanted to go back just to poke around and do some recon. It sure looks like a good area and it seems like there is a vast amount of land there that you can explore.

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Our government continues to make outlaws out of all of us! So, Bill...where exactly is the spot you like? :brows:

I was given a map 15 years back by a close friend before he died.... Hoping one day to be able to check the area out. Have not gone in to even look because if it looked good enough I would likely get myself in a mess. Pondering on it now though, but plan to research more first to see what can actually happen to me over it.

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... prevents prospecting of any kind.... Unless, of course, you are using marbled murrelets as shovels. :D

Heck, and I was imagining some pet name for a device of significant and rapid exothermic reaction :evil1: .

And it turns out to be a bird.

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A lot has been said regarding this issue. On October 5TH a meteorite hunt in Franconia is scheduled to take place. What is the Forums opinion regarding this get together?

We could all meet to toast the 10Th anniversary of the first meteorite found at Franconia, or cancel the event and stay home.

Richard aka kgmrg

P.S.

I will be camping-out at Franconia on the date mentioned. Who will join a very proud American,who has earned the right to walk this land.

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I am going and this does NOT affect me in any way far as I am concerned so see ya there!

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Hmmm. Guess we have to hire attorneys to follow us around. Just think, all the rangers are now reading this memorandum and drawing their own conclusions.

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