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Ben is it?


You can close a mapped road in Az. (Unnamed one)

Ranger pointed me this way actually. (prolly shouldn't say that... but they know and hate the beaurocray as much as those abused by it)

If you grade the road to county standards and then go to the county and apply for it to be a NAMED Private road. (Named it after my Grandpa, that was the fun part...)

(They do inspect it BTW and are very picky... took three tries for me)

With Egress/Ingress permission. And right of Tresspass I think it's called.... A gated community law or something... (County willing to help you very much if you explain what you want. Well at least Graham county)

It will take precidense... (sp) I think they call it, and Access is not removed... tricky that... but it's all legal.

Didn't work until somethin happend about 5 years ago I'm not exactly clear on that...Some regulation change on gated communities.

I don't even use the BLM lands for the ranch. I simply am a victim of their access laws. My property is private property.

My family been trying to gate/restrict that road for generations. Mostly because shoot shoot up the ranch and kill our horses.

Tens of thousands of damage some years.

Any access that is requested is always granted. I have a right to know who is on my property when. True landowners have a key and support the effort.( only three of them besides us)

I've still had to chase out a few people taking potshots at the Windmill and cabin.

And they were trespassing without request. (Cut the fence)

But nothing like before the gate.

With these chunks of property you need a thousand eyes. Usually all you see is the aftermath.

To this day if I could figure out who shot my favourite mare, my next stop would be jail. You can't put a price on that.

It's hard to trust people after something like that.

Most people are good people. Just those few that arn't can do a ton of damage.

Still have the problems with Mexican Nationals homesteading in the wash Can't get any authority to touch them.

Something not right there....Whoever you ask it's "Not my problem"

I'm really surprized there is not more violence over this. Has crossed my mind.

But they are nice to the horses and really not bad people. I feal for them but It's just not fare. We worked hard for that land.

I'll prolly end up getting in trouble with the Feds for harbouring illegals I can't get rid of.... (sic)

Moral of the story.... If your illegal the laws don't matter....If your legal it's your fault.

What makes people think they have a "right" to destroy what others have earned?

in many cases what is legal is not RIGHT.

[Regmaglitch' date=Jul 9 2006, 10:17 AM' post='55477]

Check it out, Ben

["Well at least Graham county")

Previous post should have been "Apache County"..... I have property in Graham County too...I messed up...

Folks in Apache County are very helpful.

I don't know about Graham county people... just send in my taxes regular like.... OK sorta regular like...

Priolly just as nice...

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El Dorado,

A little off topic, but man that is a gorgeous spot in thos ephotos. Looks like you could dredge and the kids swim in realtive safety.

I hope you have a really, really big winch if your going to move those 2 "cobbles" in the upper left last picture.


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It is a beautifull spot. I have moved to another claim on a small creek. Still in El Dorado county.........

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As the topic to this thread reads, the issue is access to BLM (public) land. It has nothing to do with the right to own or lease land.

If I owned property, I would post it and I would put fences and gates up, if necessary, to protect it.

That isn't the issue.

IMHO, the government had (and still does have) a responsibility to keep public land available for public use, via right of ways, easements or whatever, and it has failed to do so in many cases. The fact that there are assholes out there who will litter and destroy or damage property doesn't change anything.

That land is an asset owned by you and me. In some cases there is recreational value, and in others there are valuable natural resources including minerals. Without access, it is worthless. But, in every case which I am referring to, there is access for some but not for all.

That ain't right.

Neither you or I should have to go ask for permission to access public property and we certainly should not be denied access.

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My family spends a lot of time out in the "sticks" on State and BLM land. We have a State permit to be on the Sate lands. We always close gates behind us, pick up trash, and report people poaching game and other violations. You do not have the right to deny me LEGAL ACCESS because of other people's lack of breeding or taudry lifestyle. You are not a State or Federal Judge, and you cannot change the well recorded history of the land just because you've found "Your own private Idaho". If I were to use your very own reasoning: since you won't allow the PUBLIC to use the historically used and documented PUBLIC road that passes through the parcel that you, the MOST RECENT OWNER, own, to get to the PUBLIC land beyond, I could just hike in aroud your land and get to where the road leaves your land. Once there, I could chainsaw a few large trees across the road, and dynamite a few key spots making sure that you can't go beyond your own property. Since it's not your property, you can't do anything about it. And since you have denied the PUBLIC any access, ( you forgot.. you're the public too) there's no reason that the Forest Service or BLM is going to repair or reopen a road that isn't used. My, oh my! If I were caught by the Feds, I'd only be fined. Destruction of a "former road" is not a felony. You could take me to court yourself but, then YOU would have to prove PUBLIC ACCESS before a judge would award you any damages for loss of that access. You remember..... the same PUBLIC ACCESS that you say doen't exist. At that point you have come full circle. Surprise! "Catch 22"! I would suggest that you read up on your State Revised Statutes. Caselaw is very informative.

Thanks to everyone for making this an active and well discussed topic. An informed public is hard to take advantage of. Anyone needing assistance with an access problem can get help and information from People for the USA, The Blue Ribbon Coalition, and The Mountain States Legal Foundation. Ben

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Guest GotGold

Slim, ......I love your passion on this issue and you always bring it back on topic, Access to Public Lands. :wubu:

Regmaglitch, .......You forgot to mention a few, "Public Lands for the People", or PLP and the "Pacific Legal Foundation".

Keeping a close eye on this one. :hmmmmm:


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Well, here we go again. If you were to blow up the road and or drop trees and damage my claim in anyway, that is without a doubt against the law on many counts. I would not have to prove a single thing about the valididty of my access. Just to let you know, the BLM needs my permission to cross MY property so they can perform their inspections on my mining operation. Also the road does not go through and turns into a small trail where the claim starts.

Folks, I am so sorry that I am taking these issues personally but they seem directed at ME. I have done some further research and the road was put in by the person that the original patent was awarded to. That makes the road a private road part and parcel to the patent and not public access. So sorry you guys are jealous because I got it and you don't, but that is life (in the free world) and always will be.

I know this is the subject of this thread, but many other threads change directions and that is the nature of forums..........

Area 51 is also owned by the citizens of the US.... try to get in there and they will shoot first and ask queations later! Not all government owned land is accessable to the public!

I will defend my private property with the same energies that I defended our freedom as a Green Beret, from green tree huggers, left wing socailist and just plain jeolous people!

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Got Gold, I was unaware of any of this until I followed a map and tried to get to a couple sections of BLM land south of Placerville, CA and ran into signs and gates. One of these days I'll download the photos from my camera to my computer and post them, but I don't think anyone needs proof that this is happening.

From what I gather, virtually all of these land grabs stem from different interpretation of an 1866 Mining Law called RS 2477. A good example can be found at http://www.highway-robbery.org/lands/idaho.htm.

"In this case, Idaho County supported a mining company's attempt to tear down a gate on private land to gain access to a mining claim on adjacent Forest Service land. While the county had decided that evidence from a few old maps, and evidence of homes and communities in the area a century ago, supported a finding that a right-of-way existed -- an argument pushed by other extreme counties across the West -- the court rejected that conclusion as inconsistent with state law."

*Note the use of the word "extreme" in the above quote. It appears that the writer of this article is biased.

To learn more about this, do a Google search for "RS 2477". For a brief explanation of what is at stake, visit http://www.rs2477roads.com.

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Area 51 is also owned by the citizens of the US.... try to get in there and they will shoot first and ask queations later! Not all government owned land is accessable to the public!

I will defend my private property with the same energies that I defended our freedom as a Green Beret, from green tree huggers, left wing socailist and just plain jeolous people!" El Dorado

Well stated and I'll stand with you in defense of your property rights. Many so called "rights" are claimed by people with no real equity in them other than being a member of the public. When the public starts protecting the individual’s rights, as required by law, then the public can have a larger say in private affairs. I personally, don't believe the government, large or small, can better manage personal property rights than the owner can. ASTROBLEME

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El Dorado, I've said this before. I have nothing against you.

Let me also add that I, for one, am not jealous of you and I don't think anyone wants to blow up your claim.

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El Dorado,

Don't give up even if they are picking on you.

I hear ya... The Government set it up so access to some BLM properties the "Public" has to go through private property like mine.

TheGov doesn't create accesses to it.

If the public wants to use our land how is the "Public" going to pay for the 10's of thousands of damage to our property?

A toll Road?

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Joy, I don't believe that anyone has picked on El Dorado, but aside from that, are you telling us that you own ALL the land surrounding a piece of BLM land, and there is NO POSSIBLE way in there without crossing your land?

Has anyone ever set foot on that BLM land before?

If so, how did they get there?

You say that "TheGov doesn't create accesses to it."

Was the land not bought or granted from the government originally?

Let's say you owned a million acres. Would you sell the outer perimeter, say 100,000 acres, and NOT allow yourself access to the 900,000 acre inner portion?

I presume you would say "Of course not."

Do you think the GOVERNMENT should do that?

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You may have come across the term “sitting on ones rights". If you sit on your rights and do nothing to protect them, they go away...simple as that. If a private property owner doesn't stand up for his/her rights and allows the PUBLIC access through private property without compensation or adjudication, then they've lost out.

I know of several instances where an old trail or an old road was purchased by the government to re-open as a public access. To just have the government force an uncontrolled public ROW across private lands cannot be supported within our current system of laws. From the other perspective, a member of the public cannot cut roads through BLM lands without the proper permitting or a ROW purchase/lease/agreement.

Where there are land locked BLM parcels, most of the time, those properties are withdrawn from entry for mineral or other claims and/or leases. This administrative withdrawal action operates for 20 years or more until the land can be exchanged or sold. At this point, the land locked parcel has little value to the government and creates more headaches than benefits. The federal lands records will show trail right-of-way, highway ROW, telephone line ROW, canal and ditch ROW and on and on. If there isn't a recorded ROW, then there is no right-of-way. If the public has a need for access, then an attempt to create one should be undertaken through existing procedures for whatever purpose is required. The public cannot just demand access due to some claim of an old road being there first. Check into those old patents and you'll find, more often than not, that the only rights reserved by the government were for ditches and canals. If it wasn't reserved in the patent, it transferred to the new owner when the US granted the patent.


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Hi Gary,

Thanks for adding the names of those other organizations. They're also very helpful. In most western States, the Mineral Patents, and Homestead Entrys predate Statehood. More importantly, they predate by almost a hundred years the creation of the Forest Service and the BLM. Those parcels were awarded with ingess and egress to all surrounding lands and have Senior Title rights. That includes The right of ways, declared or not, for the general public to access adjacent lands. The Federal agencies are Johnnie-come-lately's that drew new boundries, awarded land to states, and broke out some sections to be sold as private land WITH THE PROVISO that regardless of any newly created boundaries, the pre-existing right of ways would be inviolate. Even though local Federal courts may rule to close some roads, when appealed to a Circuit Court level, the sanctity of the public right of way via senior title rights is always upheld. In State Supreme Courts this is especially true. We have already beaten the Forest Service on this one twice in the last five years up in our neck of the woods as those older roads are not just access to public lands, they are an important escape route in a forest fire that would prevent travel in other directions.

Call or Email the organizations that we've previously mentioned. They'll be glad to show you how to get access. Ben

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It is post # 59 that I am referring to..........That is an attitude from the kind of people I am keeping off MY property.

Just for general info, I am a staunch suppoerter of Jerry Hobbs and PLP. I have helped raise quite a bit of money to hel him and his small staff with the great work they do. Speaking odf that, they are having a raffle to raise money, lots of good prizes and best of all it supports a small organization that is not afraid to take the governmnet on! Here is a link to their site or caontact me and I will get you tickets. My Webpage Just go to the Forum then the Donations thread, the info is there.

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I too, as stated earlier agree with the private property owners. If you own the land you have the right to keep people off. My grandfather owned land with a lake in the middle of hie 100 acres and since there was a trail to the lake he left it open for folks that wanted to fish the lake. Well after several years of trash, tree cutting, camfire rings full of burnt trash, etc. he closed access. You they took him to court, but folks he OWNED the lake and the LAND and had every right to colse it down to protect his property.

Now wouldn't it be just all love-dovy if folks just wanted to drive in to BLM land and leave it the way they found it? Not so though and even if many are curtious and respectful of the landowner MOST are not and will trash his gates, leave them open, litter and even due damage for no other reason than jealousy! I know for a fact that if you are not blind you know what I say is true.

Again as I said earlier, DON'T blame the land owner for not wanting problems if you are one of the good souls, because your anger is miss-directed. Blame your fellow citizens that have no respect for others and their property or YOUR right to cross that property! It is a sign of the times my friends, just look around. Some of these areas are pilfered and trashed to the point it breaks your heart, do you or would you invite that to your yard big or small.

If I owned land with the right to restrict access or through traffic as outlined in my contract guess what, the signs are going up. Now before you chastize me re-read this and remember it's only my opinion, but much of it is based on simple fact.


I won't even go into frivelous law suits here....

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I'm really glad I brought this up, and I appreciate every post here. The fact that the BLM didn't come into existence until well after much of the land was settled was something I didn't consider, and that probably explains most of the landlocked parcels. I have already stated that I would post -- and fence and gate if necessary -- any land that I owned and I don't blame anyone for legally doing so.

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Sorry this got longer than I intended... guess I get wound up a bit... hits ta home ya know...prolly should shorten it for better points... but outta time...8^)

The land is simply access locked because no one builds public roads....


Originally an Old Ranchers ran cattle on the land. 1800's early 1900's (Open range...)

To make it easierto manage the cattle they fenced off some areas and had Fence line trails.

The Government declared the land BLM and Private.

They Set up Section Checkerboards.... Look at a map of Northern Az. it's somewhat amusing.

Much private landlocked BLM....

They had a fence out rule... If you fenced your property you could keep out the cattle and the BLM couldn't charge the Ranchers for that Acreage in BLM....

No thought for Public use... They were trying to stop overgrazing....And make a little extra change .

Well the fences stayed and so did the little paths along them no matter what the Checkerboard looked like.

The fences need regular mending.

Some yahoo called it a road and put it on a map.

The "Road" going though my property is just one of those....

The Govenment has never built a dang thing... When this was done it wasn't set up for "Public Use"

Wasn't really a problem until all the Yahoo's moved out west. It was just an inconvenience.

Only your neighbors used it. and we all looked out for one another.

No other roads have been created to these properties... And think about it...How do you get to a grey square on a checkerboard without going through a white one.

I have a right to protect my property and dang it... The guy that made that trail/fence was a friend of my grandpa!


Who the heck are all these newbies that think they can destroy what we worked for? Just cause they want to shoot off their new toy guns or burn up rangeland peeleing out on ATV's...

They don't stop at the BLM borders ya know. They think they have no Personal responsibility.

Now what did the "Public do or will do" to pay for thier play and destruction? NOTHING.

What did the Government do? NOTHING except COLLECT RANGE usage FEES for grazing... (Isn't free for that!)

Why do grazing rights have to pay and no one else?

Social issues impact: "CAN use vs RIGHT to use"

Simply those that live there are fed up with the Screaming ATV. Gun Popping, total lack of responsibility "Public"

Are they all like that,NO... but there are less and less of the good ones.

It is self defensive against an unruly unclean HOARD... The "Public" abused the consented privelege of use of my land.

If the Government wants you to use it... They can build a road and buy an easment from me.

They simply say you CAN... not that you have a RIGHT.

The difference between "Can" and "right" seem to be concepts alien to all the Yahoo's.

Or even better... Buy some land... only bout 500 and acre... Put your money where your ATV plays and shoot downrange from my house!

The rest are freeloaders (not one dime of commitment or responsibility) . and cost me money, for the actions they won't take responsibility for.

Reasonable expectaion of use:

I also have rights.... and I own property! Patented DEEDED property constently maintained.... Public! What you got ?

Ask nicely.. be a good neighbor.... Heck a nice guy I'm liable to hand a spare key to for life....That's all I ask.

The ones that complain to that. They obviously want the anonymity of the "Public" to do what ever they please without ramifications, even though I pay for it. Want me to trust this group?

Comes back to the total lack of personal responsibility and entitlement because "I breath, I'm entitled" mentality ruining this country.

As far as I am concerned if they don't want to tell me who they are and that they are there. They are trespassers up to something.

Has been my experience and cost me a lot of money I can't afford.

Far as I see it the "Hoard" is like a herd of cattle... I'm fencing out. My ponies graze on my private land!

I really don't give a dang about the BLM sections someone wants to go to.... Make your own way... Or ask...

I don't see that as unreasonable considering the lack of respect for my rights by most of the "Public"

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Thank you for providing this information Joy. It helps me (and I'm sure others) see the overall picture. In my case, I'm just a dumb kid from Elba, MN who likes to hunt and fish. I came out west to clean up bullets, shell casings and trash with my Gold Bug 2. There is no BLM land in MN, just lots of state forest, wildlife management areas, national forest and private land. Most of the lakes are way too big to be privately owned and virtually all of them have public access. If you see a road on a map, you can use it in most cases, and not being able to do that out there in CA got me started with this. I ran into one dead end after another.

Maybe I've just been lucky in AZ. I haven't seen any landlocked BLM land yet, or many gates. Most of the gates I have seen are unlocked, and if there is a sign on it at all it simply says "Please close gate".

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Ya can come clean up my land anytime... 8^)

BTW... mine used to have a Please close gate sign only...

Bout the only real reason you'd ever want to cross my land is the Indian Ruins arrowheads or Petrified wood and agates.

If ya see my Name and mailing address (Buckeye) on a sign with a locked gate you are welcome....

Little hint... bout 100 yrs back on the north fence line from this gate is my driveway gate(Ranch sign over the top.... Still only says please close gate... 100 foot in is a little connecting trail to the old one....(just a couple of ruts...Misses the washout too...My cabin is still 1/2 mile down on the driveway. Stop by and say howdy if I'm there.

Those that know... use it.... Hard to tell with the Juiniper that it's there.... Locked gates amoungst neighbors make enemies...

I doubt anyone here is gonna cause me greif...

The maze just keeps out the Yahoos...<snicker>

Thank you for providing this information Joy. It helps me (and I'm sure others) see the overall picture. In my case, I'm just a dumb kid from Elba, MN who likes to hunt and fish. I came out west to clean up bullets, shell casings and trash with my Gold Bug 2. There is no BLM land in MN, just lots of state forest, wildlife management areas, national forest and private land. Most of the lakes are way too big to be privately owned and virtually all of them have public access. If you see a road on a map, you can use it in most cases, and not being able to do that out there in CA got me started with this. I ran into one dead end after another.

Maybe I've just been lucky in AZ. I haven't seen any landlocked BLM land yet, or many gates. Most of the gates I have seen are unlocked, and if there is a sign on it at all it simply says "Please close gate".

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Here in AZ there is a ghost town (stockton) that is surrounded by private land and there is no way to get to it.

I have called and gone to talk to BLM in person and all I get is that the private land owners can close the roads off. So as tax payers we have public land that has no access and there seems nothing we can do about it. :WOW: . To me this sucks, but what can you do.

You're going to the wrong set. go to the county commissioners and planniing commission. anyone who buys and develops vacant land has to 'donate' land to public roadways, usually along the section lines or parcel lines. Your property taxes pay for this, and easements are used by everyone. see what they say about it

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as for blm restrictions, what you have here are layers and concepts.

The blm, using endangered species act, can curtail the use of any tract by any vehicle if the 'traffic' threatens plants and animal life.

It may also be a wilderness area or being studied as such.

A guzzler may be nearby and your intrusion may affect wildlife and water access.

there are any number of pretenses that can be used.

If you have a mining claim, you have to furnish a land use summary, environmental impact statements, and how you will mitigate land damage after you are through with a given phase. BLM may require that you post a liability bond before allowing you in to make a road or move dirt.

Layers in that national defense has access to land use, and that curtails safety issues with the general public (as in area 51, Nellis Bombing Range, Yuma Proving Grounds). The land may be part of another fed agency's study area, reclamation area, or forest service area off limits to what you want to use it for.

Maybe the land has been bought out by a natural conservancy group, and they spend money in cooperation with the BLM to preserve the area.

If the BLM area has Indian (native American) historical value, or is an old ghost town site, you may be denied access under the antiquities act.

No mining claim can leaglly be used as a homesite, camping area, or seasonal use for other than mineral extracton activities, and as such, the BLM may serve as a police agency to keep the land secure until you post a bond and summary of your commercial extraction plans.

there's a lot of reasons you can be kept out, and rangers can be variable in allowing some people in while others are adamantly against any incursion (access).

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Guest GotGold

As I've said, I've been watching this thread closely.

There also is a very good discussion regarding this issue on the Colorado Prospectors Forum, here's the link,


Remember, Slims problem/gripe was with ACCESS!!!

Jerry (PLP101) a.k.a. Public Lands for the People, and (59er) don't know his/her affiliation, really bring forth a wealth of info relative to codes, counties, the 'birth' of the Forest Service/BLM etc.

I believe there is something 'key' to the discussion which has not really been properly addressed by either of these two forums. What sort of "Charter" was given to the FS/BLM to begin with??? :???:

First, consider that the Forest Service and BLM came into existence well after the establishment of the Mining Act. Next, consider that both of these organizations came into existence to manage, not abridge regulations that 'are on the books' from years past.

There is a very huge problem with this because each FS/BLM District is allowed to manage "Thier Area, according to the needs as they see Fit".

And yes, there are some out there that mess things up for others! Should the good guys get 'hosed' in the process? This the attitude of management of our lands by the FS/BLM that takes rights away because of the stupidity of other!!!

There is also the issue of government law suits against the legitimate small mining opperation willing to do the required paperwork and pay the fees, only to be taken into court by the FS/BLM for a small oversite infraction with respect to equipment used to maintain access to thier claim. Such a law suit is a direct cost to the claim owner, if he should win do you think for one minute he could get his money back without a costly counter claim.

I also very much respect the rights of the private land owner. In closing I would suggest this, if you can't get immediate access, do a search, for petes' sake it's public information. If you open a gate, close and latch it afterwards, and search for the owner if practical. DO NOT ABUSE PRIVATE PROPERTY.

Do I need to mention the millions in government grant money thats given to organizations such as the Sierra Club, Earth First, Green Peace and other type of the same organizations at taxpayers expence. Remember I said, GRANT MONEY!!!


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