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Hey guys. Please get on your house reps about this. Corner hopping is getting attacked again. They want to make it law that you can't go from public to public via corners. We have over 750,000 acres of OUR land that is inaccessible because of these corners. Tell these guys to stop bringing these bills forward and lets shut this one down. I'm not good with links but I'll try to get on in another post with email address to send to. Thanks
Corner crossings should not be allowed in any state.
Please explain your reasoning Missouribreaks. Perhaps I'm ignorant of some good, logical fact here. The only reason I can see is if you are a property owner adjacent to an inaccessible public parcel and want to keep it "private". Enlighten me please. I can accept a good reason.
Greed is the reason, plain and simple. To say a person is trespassing because their toe occupied 3" of private land for 1/64 of a second would be like getting a trespass fine for mowing the blades of grass that butts up to the neighbors lawn. Mother effing retarded to put it bluntly.
This whole corner crossing thing should be a non issue but instead it's become a way for outfitters to keep public hunters and anglers from public lands. Sickening greed from slime ball assholes.
Here is what I wrote to my Representative:
I'm writing in fervent opposition to HB 566, Corner Crossing Trespass. If adopted, this bill will not only contribute significantly to magnifying and exasperating any divide between sportsmen/women and landowners, but is a taking of public land by preventing access to those public checkerboarded lands.
As an outdoor person I respect property rights and believe it is the express right of the landowners to restrict who and who does not have permission to enter their lands. However, crossing of common section corners from one parcel of public land to another public land parcel is crossing of private lands in concept only; there is no taking from adjacent property owners.
Further, give current GPS location technology availability and accuracy, past impediments to misunderstandings and unintentional violations of the public land access concept and intent are minimized.
Simply put, Corner Crossing is a fair and equitable manner of allowing the Public access to those lands that belong to the Public.
Please vote against HB 566.
Explained on thread in general forum.
There is no way a person can cross a corner without finding the corner marker which is nearly impossible without surveying equipment. Todays GPS units only get you close, not exact.
Another bill representing selfish greed. Spout BS about inaccuracy and someone might be trespassing. Well it works the other way too and that corner may be off and quite the distance inside public lands when you set a fence post. Just plain BS GREED.
Missouribreaks, do you mean the Community forum? Can't find a General forum. What topic heading am I looking for and/or for what state? Gotta remember, this isn't Michigan or Minn. The majority of landowners that I know would certainly accept GPS readings or fence corners unless they are adamant about keeping that public parcel for themselves. I have personally been a part of this.
I see it every fall elk hunting the breaks, outfitters put bogus signage on blm lands to curb its use, they disallow thru access, which is fully within their right to do so, but it is for the sole purpose of keeping public off of the public land adjacent to their private land.
I acquired permission to hunt some private land in Wyoming from a very nice old gentleman but it was so long as I didn't access the blm adjacent to his land because he didn't want a fight from his bullying, outfitter neighbors. That's the kind of sickness that is thriving unfortunately.
I posted this on the elk forum too. That's what missouribreaks is referring too.
Although I don't think your missing much if you haven't seen his response. I couldn't really make any sense of it and he didn't answer any of my questions as to how this is a good bill for the people of MT and others who use public lands.
It benefits a small amount of people who own land that has public corners on it. It's not right but that's who it benefits. There is NO good reason as to why we should not be able to access our land. Period. NONE. Is there a good reason as to why a private landowner should be locked out of his land??? It's the same damn thing. I posted a list of emails you can write to. They are voting this week. I have been getting some responses from them so our voice is being heard. Get on it.
It is a liability issue for private landowners should an injury take place on a corner crossing. Who pays? Outfitters will love to be able to cross corners and access lands near private without leasing, in a way I hope it passes.
Sawtooth-"It is a liability issue for private landowners should an injury take place on a corner crossing. Who pays? Outfitters will love to be able to cross corners and access lands near private without leasing, in a way I hope it passes."
I actually think the opposite will happen. Right not outfitters will lease up those sections in order to gain access to land that no one else can get to. If this was passed, we would all have access to it so there would be no point in holding some of those small leases that hold the key to large swaths of public land. What happens when an injury takes place on public land right now whats the difference vs on private land where you have permission? Do you sue the landowner if you get hurt on their land? I've never heard of that (although I'm sure it happens in the world we live in). Remember though, we are dealing with Public to Public corner hopping.
It is public to public but crosses private and private, otherwise it would not be a concern. Will see how it goes.
"A violator of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be fined not less than $50 or more than $500 or imprisoned in the county jail for not more than 6 months, or both." SBH, this bill is about fining and/or jailing guilty corner crossers, not about allowing it. It is just another exaggerated private property rights bill which will potentially drive a bigger wedge between sportsmen and landowners. It is ironically unjust since HB 295, which would have increased the fine for illegally gating a public road, failed. It is apparent that this legislature does not recognize public property access rights.
Just as Congress pushed a few decades ago to consolidate sections of public lands which were in the checkerboard array (ie: Gallatin Forest Land Swaps), someday I expect that Congress will resolve the corner crossing issue. I predict that the solution will be in the best interests of the public and those greedy landowners pushing for this HB 566 will squeal and whine like gut-shot hogs. The issue would be better treated by a legislature seeking solutions ... not more divisiveness!
A landowner that will disallow access over a corner has an axe to grind and/or is an outfitter increasing land for his clients at the expense of the public that pay his subsidies.
Sawtooth, yes indeed an interesting read ... and not unexpected. It illustrates why HB 566 is based on solid law, yet sadly it perpetuates the divisiveness between outdoor recreationists and landowners. UPOM consistently and continuously throws gasoline on that fire, in the name of "protecting" private property rights. As a landowner and proponent of property rights, I understand their perspective. What bothers me is that UPOM's perspective is either ignorant of or unwilling to recognize the public property rights. It is undebatable that those many sections of checkerboard tracts of USFS and BLM lands are in fact PUBLIC LANDS. I could even be supportive of UPOM if they recognized the right for the public who owns those lands and pays taxes to protect those lands also has the right to somehow access those PUBLIC LANDS. Instead, the obvious intent to hold exclusive access certainly seems selfish, greedy, and unwilling to seek solutions to public access to public land issues. Again, the prediction is that with a pendulum swing politically (and be sure the pendulum will swing!) the legislation could very well not be to their liking.
There have been pendulum swings and will be more as the liberals continue to lead the western state resident hunters into believing they support them. In the end, the libs will turn against the hunters and all gains will only be short term. From what I have studied, the libs have really outsmarted the western states resident hunters, something hunting and hunters will eventually regret. Hunter liberalism and entitlement is what creates the division between resident hunters and private landowners. As far as corner crossings, hope it stays out of Iowa.
Although the public lands access issues are not an R or D, conservative or liberal, issue, the bad bills in Montana which have served to limit access to public lands are R sponsored bills. Even those who have attempted to repeal our great Montana stream access rights are Republicans. 'Just the way it is. For full disclosure my over seven decades of life have been as a Montana Republican, but the 2011 legislative session began the onslaught of anti-hunter, anti-public lands, anti-public access bills which went way over the line. I'm not trying to be a smart aleck, but are there even any checkerboard USFS or BLM railroad land sections in Iowa?
Oh yes, imagine if someone brushed your airspace with their big toe! How dare they right? Yet it's ok to keep the rest of Americans off of their land.
Anyone that truly believes in property rights would allow a person to step over a corner.
"From what I have studied, the libs have really outsmarted the western states resident hunters, something hunting and hunters will eventually regret." 'Don't know where that came from but it could not be further from the truth in Montana. At the January public lands rally in the Capitol of Montana, the Democratic Governor, who is himself a hunter and fisherman, loudly and passionately spoke that Montana's public lands will not be transferred, traded, or sold "NOT DURING MY WATCH!" Now if there were some Republican leaders there who support public lands and hunting ... they were hiding.
I have been emailing back and forth with Kathryn QannaYahu of "Montanas Enhancing Wildlife and Habitat" and I was under the assumption it was illegal to corner cross.....I believe differently now and it makes sense that there wouldn't need to be another bill passed if it were truly illegal already..........Shame is many landowners and conservation officers have been telling the public and kids at hunter safety sessions that it's illegals when there is NO current law on the books.
In Kathryn's own words: Mike, I have a friend, a retired Asst. Chief of Enforcement that confirmed the night I ran this bill by him and my perspective, that there is no law against corner crossing. He provided a write up on this bill to others, "From my read, it would make corner-crossing an act of criminal trespass which would be a watershed law. The penalty is standard low-level misdemeanor verbiage (“…fined not less than $50 or more than $500 or imprisoned in the county jail for not more than 6 months, or both.”) There is currently no Montana statutory regulation of corner-crossing, either allowing or prohibiting it. In fact, no western state to this point has adopted a corner-crossing law although last I heard Wyoming has some case law that has ruled in favor of it being legal."
It has been MT FWP policy to avoid the conflict, but no law. Perhaps ask your hunter safety friend to provide you with the MCA specific to corner crossing? Because I could not find it, Helena FWP chief legal couldn't site it, there is not one in the official Montana Access Guide.
I always found it strange that Montana is vaccinating prairie dogs.
Not at all strange, as Montana is the leading state as savior of the black-footed ferret, the species that loves to dine on prairie dogs. Now that's not as Iowa corny as you express.
That is the problem with HB 566, right now there is nothing in Montana's laws that states it is legal or illegal. This bill would make it illegal. No one have ever challenged the current laws, or should I say . . . . Lack there of.
Write the Committee members and your elected officials in your own districts. This is important.
RoughCountry- You are correct. It's not technically a law and has been left in the hands of local judges to decide on a case by case basis. This bill would officially make it illegal. Most judges have NOT been prosecuting on it and throwing cases out of court
JMG- You are spot on.
StraighArrow- Sorry if I misrepresented the bill. I know it's not about allowing it. Rather its about ensuring that it is illegal.
I don't like it, but I was under the impression that a bill to make it legal was shot down during the last legislative session. In other words, it's not legal to corner hop now.
Not the same thing. Last session's bill would have simply clarified the situation, making it specifically legal to corner hop. You are correct, it did not pass. However, since there is no specific legislation or case law that makes it illegal (as HB566 would do), it is not currently illegal either. That is, since there is no specific prohibition against corner hopping, enforcement of corner hopping trespass violations is open for interpretation and at this point, most law enforcement and County Prosecutors are NOT bring these cases forward. Still a muddy playing field, but one that the public is still participating in!
HB 566 would clear up the mud and make it ILLEGAL in Montana ... so oppose this bill or there is no hope for a future corner access to our hundreds of thousands of now landlocked public lands arrayed in checkerboard fashion ... and now accessed only by adjacent landowners and/or their outfitters.
Yet you read the thread on Bowsite and there are supporters of it. Even if you own land or have permission to access a favorite spot or two, you have to ask yourself, how long will that last? How much is this going to cost in the future? What about future generations?
I can't fathom how anyone can favor this.
Thank you for the clarification. My opposition of the bill has been sent.
tradmt, you are a smart fella,
I would be more concerned with all the quiet Petroleum and Fergus county meetings setting the stage for a national park in the Lewis and Clark area of the breaks. Within 25 years I am guessing the grasslanders and wildlife federation will have secured enough ranches, and added enough endangered species to get her done. Grazing and hunting is only temporary, read the fine print.
Yes, all the secret meetings promoted by the Bilderberg Group under the auspices of Agenda 21 to establish the Big Open grasslands national park from Denver to Edmonton, so that the Rockefellers can invite the Trumps to hunt on their private preserve national park. No hunting for Montanans. 'Guess I'll sell my bow. Woe is us!
More about GMU 410 and surrounding areas. Have been several meetings lately. Is about the coming of wolves, bison, black footed ferrets, white tailed prairie dogs, 20 years of controlled cattle grazing and hunting,.... then the big one, a new National Park. Good strategy as it gets the ranchers and private land owners out of sensitive areas and pulls the wool over the hunters eyes by allowing them to hunt, but written to expire. Similarly, ranchers get grazing districts, but wait, only temporarily. It is coming boys and girls, work in progress.
By the way, don't take my word for it. Attend the meetings yourself, was one this week in the Petroleum County courthouse.
The biggest threat to the future of hunting will be the lack of land to hunt on. The super wealthy continue to own a larger and larger amount of the wealth in the country. Some of these people, like the Wilks Brothers continue to buy up larger portions of the western US. Right now for example they own huge tracts around the Snowy Mountains, and not only do they shut them off for hunting, but do their best to shut off hunting in the adjoining public land. They donated $10 million to Ted Cruz's campaign, because Cruz wants to transfer federal land to states, and then ultimately have it sold off to the public (people like the Wilks brothers). The top 0.1% in the US own as much of the wealth as the bottom 90%, if they choose to buy something, they get it, money is no problem. I wouldn't be worried about someone's pipe dream of a national park stretching from Denver to Edmonton, I'd be worried about something that is actually happening - land being transferred into the hands of the super wealthy.
How do you plan to stop that? Joining the liberal antihunting hugging crowd is a piss poor solution in my opinion.
In reality it cannot be stopped. Too many people, lots of wealth. Ironically, hunting and other land recreation is the attraction of the wealthy landowners and their hunters. The small and nonwealthy ranchers and other landowners in the breaks will sell to the park creators and drive directly to the bank for a huge deposit. Buffalo will replace the cattle, wolves will replace the human hunters, elk will get under control. There is no money in ranching for cattle, recreation and prairie dog hugging is where the money is. The plan is over twenty years, and it is actually happening right now. Go to the meetings and read between the legal lines, hunters cannot be that dumb.
By the way, the park will not go from Edmonton to Denver. It likely will encompass the Lewis and Clark and Missouri River areas, the Missouri Breaks.. Will be smaller, much like the Teddy Roosevelt area of North Dakota and grow over time as adjacent landowners sell for the big bucks(not deer).
Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Bash the left half of the political spectrum and vote the right half. All the while the right half is the major pushers of the concentration of wealth (i.e. land transfers resulting in private land sales Is but one small example). Damn few take the time to really breakdown what is going on in this country and for the world for that matter. The result, Colonel Cheeto at the helm and ships steaming to Korea with the open and stated threat of yet another war front. Meanwhile the citizen is kept busy at the local level fighting for personal freedoms and rights from outdoor activities to clean drinking water. These bills are a DIRECT assault on EVERYONES freedoms.
Of Note...native grasslands in northern Montana are potential targets for future new national park. If you hunt GMU 410 and adjacent units from Chouteau to Jordan, this area is where the environmentalists are buying up ranch lands to reduce the populations of humans, and prepare for the future park system. Two Crow is recent example. You can still hunt and graze your cows..... but this is only temporary in the agreements. IMO, from my sources, if all goes as planned human hunters will eventually be replaced by wolves, and cows by buffalo. Hard to believe voting Montana sportsman support these efforts.
Cool, I for one can't wait, I don't like cows or people.
"Hard to believe voting Montana sportsman support these efforts." ... especially when there's no evidence that they do. Even if this "IMO" conspiracy national park was proposed for Congress to approve soon, likely many sportsmen would support it. It can be firmly asserted that the national parks of America are what sets this nation apart from many others. If you are enamored by lots of cattle and lots of people there are places on the globe that might attract you. In Montana the national parks are what attract tourists, firing the economic engine of this state to the point where tourism is about to overtake agriculture as the number one industry. Don't be a park hater; embrace the grasslands' future and allow it to benefit you. Your angst will reduce and you can concentrate on some other conspiracy ... there's many to choose from.
Actually unit 410 and the river area would make a great National Park for wolves, buffalo etc to do their thing. Great for bus loads of foreign tourist too. There are enough other areas in Montana to hunt elk. I am not against the park as I do not hunt that area. Ranching is not prosperous, much more money in joining the anti's, lol.
Actually it wouldn't, the "park" would need to encompass the entirety of region 6,7, half of Alberta and Saskatchewan and at least as far as the little Missouri and Black Hills of the Dakotas to sustain wild, untouched, native animal species. Otherwise it's just a large zoo that only hurts the animal populations and costs 3 times what it previously produced.
But it certainly doesn't surprise me that folks blinded by skyscrapers dream this shit up when they have more money than sense.
Getting back to the whole subject of corner hopping. Anyone, or any party, that tries to suggest that corner hopping should be illegal, is not someone who is looking out for the interest of the hunter from Montana. Public land, should be land available for use by the public. Even if it is completely surrounded by private, there should still be access.
Imagine one of (name a MT town) city park open to public use and the surrounding neighbors being able to block entry to it either from an existing or from creating an entry. NO public lands should be forbidden public usage. State or federal with the exception of a small percentage of military reservation lands for security or safety issues.
Yes, corner hopping should be a non issue. Now, as far as land locked public where there are no corners to jump, I will side with the private land owner on however he/she decides to handle it.
The problem with leaving it to the private landowner to decide whether we have access to the public land, is that the private land is becoming increasingly in the hands of a few landowners, and these folks have no intention of ever allowing you access. It doesn't matter if they are wealthy liberal movie stars, or wealthy conservative businessmen, they don't want you on their land. Public land should have public access, especially any place where there are large tracts of public land. These landowners are all driving on highways that were built on someone else's land for the good of everyone.
I understand but, I don't believe I should be made to allow anybody and everybody through my property, it's that simple. Now, I would like to see easements made mandatory on future purchases to allow for access because at least this way the purchaser is aware before hand but to just let everyone and their dog through private land just isn't right.
Now again, with all that said, if a landowner does not allow access and takes government subsidies he/she should be mandated to allow access to that public land at a minimum and dare I say, but also their private property.
I agree, no government subsidies for farming and ranching, period. If you want that then place your land in Conservation easement.