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lineman1779
12-15-2011, 06:36 PM
i read a thread earlier which stated problems with publicly accessable roads in wyoming. i was under the impression that if i could get my truck down the road being paved or dirt or even a 2 track that it was a public road. can someone tell me if i am wrong or maybe somewhat rite. i only ask because a friend and i hunted goats in unit 6 last year and had a very successful outing but after reading the thread ealier to nite im afraid i mite have not been on a public accessable road. so some clerifacation would be great. so we know for next year when we go back. thanks for any help

jenbickel
12-15-2011, 07:31 PM
Nope, there are some roads around here that the road goes through private land and if you want to be able to go on that portion of the road, you have to seek permission from the property owner first. In one of the spots that I shed hunt, there is a little section of the road that is on private land and by little, I mean like seriously 10 feet.. The game warden the last two years down there has sat there and gave everyone trespassing tickets on their way back out.

Montana
12-15-2011, 07:32 PM
Only taking a stab at this.... But I think it is the hunters responsibility to know boundary lines. There are roads on private property too so just because there is a road doesn't grant permission to hunt. Sorry... But I can't give you even some what right on this one.... :)

lineman1779
12-16-2011, 01:40 PM
thanks jen for the info. i have another question for you. in unit 6 and im sure in most of the other units out there there is public hunting ground that are completely sorrounded by private land. how does anyone get on those public grounds. i got a feeling you are going to tell me that i have to get permission from the land owner to cross there property to get there. and if they say no you cant cross then it realy isnt public ground then if they dont let people cross their property. hopefully i am wrong and there is a way to get to them. let me know.

NDHunter
12-16-2011, 03:12 PM
thanks jen for the info. i have another question for you. in unit 6 and im sure in most of the other units out there there is public hunting ground that are completely sorrounded by private land. how does anyone get on those public grounds. i got a feeling you are going to tell me that i have to get permission from the land owner to cross there property to get there. and if they say no you cant cross then it realy isnt public ground then if they dont let people cross their property. hopefully i am wrong and there is a way to get to them. let me know.

Unfortunately, the "landlocked" public land that you mention is off-limits unless you can get permission from a landowner. Like Jen mentioned earlier, you MUST have permission from the landowner. The only other way I know of that you can legally get to that land is via the aerial assault. But to do that, you either need an airplane or helicopter. It sucks............. There are probably hundreds of thousands of acres of public land in the U.S. that really isn't public at all. Maybe even millions.

jenbickel
12-16-2011, 04:47 PM
thanks jen for the info. i have another question for you. in unit 6 and im sure in most of the other units out there there is public hunting ground that are completely sorrounded by private land. how does anyone get on those public grounds. i got a feeling you are going to tell me that i have to get permission from the land owner to cross there property to get there. and if they say no you cant cross then it realy isnt public ground then if they dont let people cross their property. hopefully i am wrong and there is a way to get to them. let me know.

ND Hunter is correct. There is a lot of public land here that is landlocked by private land. The only way to acess it is to get permission from the land owners. I have also noticed that even though the land is public, since it is private land surrounding it, a lot of land owners will consider it "their land." You will run into a few land owners that will be generous enough to let you cross their land to get into the public land but I will admit that there isnt a lot of them.

Colorado Cowboy
12-17-2011, 10:24 AM
Nope, there are some roads around here that the road goes through private land and if you want to be able to go on that portion of the road, you have to seek permission from the property owner first. In one of the spots that I shed hunt, there is a little section of the road that is on private land and by little, I mean like seriously 10 feet.. The game warden the last two years down there has sat there and gave everyone trespassing tickets on their way back out.

I've hunted Wyoming since the 70's and know what you are talking about. BUT in the situation you mention seems to me this is like a speed trap on the highway! If it is not posted or gated, it would be very difficult to justify a ticket for trespassing. I realize you are supposed to know where you are in relation to private property, but this just seems a bit extreme.

lineman1779
12-17-2011, 11:12 AM
i really am grateful from all of you with the info you are give me. it will really help for next year. i will have alot more questions as the year goes on. now with what we have discussed so far i havve maps and i purchased a chip for my gps that shows unit boundries and if the roads are marked on both resources that i have are they public or private roads. like i said i really am grateful with the info. and hope you all have a safe and marry holidays.

MOHunter
12-17-2011, 12:30 PM
i really am grateful from all of you with the info you are give me. it will really help for next year. i will have alot more questions as the year goes on. now with what we have discussed so far i havve maps and i purchased a chip for my gps that shows unit boundries and if the roads are marked on both resources that i have are they public or private roads. like i said i really am grateful with the info. and hope you all have a safe and marry holidays.

I made my first trip to WY this fall and ran into the access issues. I had the huntinggpsmaps and could clearly tell what property was public/private. The problem I ran into was trying to figure out which roads were public. It turned out there was only 1 country road in our entire unit. Other than this county road and the highway, everything in the unit was private. Pretty much every road in existence showed up on my GPS, but they were not marked as private. I called the BLM 3 times to find out if they have maps that show which roads are public. They said no (so I don't have any BLM maps) but told me that if it's maintained by a grader it's public. Well, I can promise you that is wrong.

I'd be interested to know if you have something that specifically shows which roads are public.

I have a feeling many beginners in WY inadvertently hunt on ground that is illegal and never get caught. It's frustrating to the point it makes you want to take your chances, but as soon as you understand the rules there will be someone there watching. My advice is to not be shy on this board or with the Game & Fish in WY in getting your questions answered. They won't be shy about writing you a ticket if you're wrong. And it can be pretty difficult to understand.

dcannon
12-17-2011, 04:12 PM
As a general rule in Wyoming, the County Roads, Highways, and Forest Service roads are public. If you are on one of these roads, and on public land, then 2 tracks will also be public until you get to the edge of the public land. If you are on private land on one of the roads, then 2 tracks will be private, and you would have to ask the landowner permission to cross the land. The above stated roads are pretty well marked. As long as you make sure some of the public land at least touches one of the public roads, and start your access from there, you will be pretty well off.

jenbickel
12-17-2011, 05:02 PM
You just gotta be careful on the two track roads because there are a lot of areas that are really checkerboarded with private and public land and just because you started on public doesn't mean you can keep going.

MOHunter
12-17-2011, 06:05 PM
As a general rule in Wyoming, the County Roads, Highways, and Forest Service roads are public. If you are on one of these roads, and on public land, then 2 tracks will also be public until you get to the edge of the public land. If you are on private land on one of the roads, then 2 tracks will be private, and you would have to ask the landowner permission to cross the land. The above stated roads are pretty well marked. As long as you make sure some of the public land at least touches one of the public roads, and start your access from there, you will be pretty well off.

99% of the roads in the state are NOT one of the above mentioned options.

SouthernWyo
12-17-2011, 06:53 PM
Whoever told you that the BLM maps did not show road status did not know what they were talking about. The latest BLM surface land status maps clearly label which roads have an easement across private property. These are BLM, county, and USFS roads, state and interstate highways. Other public access roads such as WGFD easements are also clearly marked. The key at the bottom of the map will show which symbol represents each jurisdiction, in all cases by the road number within a box, trapezoid, circle, etc. If a road is not one of these and crosses private lands, the portion on the private property is NOT public access. Most of the newer edition BLM surface status maps also show easements across private lands with shading along the road in addition to the road label.

Unfortunately, it sounds like you talked to someone with that particular BLM office that either did not know their job, spoke out of turn, or did not know their head from a hole in the ground. It happens.

Colorado Cowboy, in Wyoming, it is clearly stated in the regulations that it is the sportsman's responsibility to know the land status where they are hunting, it can't be much more black and white.

jenbickel
12-17-2011, 06:58 PM
Whoever told you that the BLM maps did not show road status did not know what they were talking about. The latest BLM surface land status maps clearly label which roads have an easement across private property. These are BLM, county, and USFS roads, state and interstate highways. Other public access roads such as WGFD easements are also clearly marked. The key at the bottom of the map will show which symbol represents each jurisdiction, in all cases by the road number within a box, trapezoid, circle, etc. If a road is not one of these and crosses private lands, the portion on the private property is NOT public access. Most of the newer edition BLM surface status maps also show easements across private lands with shading along the road in addition to the road label.

Unfortunately, it sounds like you talked to someone with that particular BLM office that either did not know their job, spoke out of turn, or did not know their head from a hole in the ground. It happens.

Colorado Cowboy, in Wyoming, it is clearly stated in the regulations that it is the sportsman's responsibility to know the land status where they are hunting, it can't be much more black and white.

Very well put! That is exactly right.

Colorado Cowboy
12-18-2011, 06:58 AM
I know that you are supposed to know the status of the land & roads that you are using...or intent to use. Read my post carefully and the last sentance says that. I was just saying that it seemed a little extreme that a warden would use a 10' strip of private road on an otherwise public access road to write tickets. Just seems a little chicken s#%t to me. I know if I were issued a citation and that piece of road was not posted or had a gate, I would go to court. Probably lose...but at least I'd get to make my point in front of a judge! I've hunted private & public land for 30 years all over western Wyoming and have never seen anything like this.

lineman1779
12-18-2011, 10:09 AM
southernwyo, its good to hear that there must be newer maps out there because the blm maps that i recieved were from 09. and from what you are saying sounds like they are pretty nice and easy to read. i will look into the new maps. and mohunter i think it was your thread that i read a couple of days ago and what got all of this started. i was really miss led with what and what wasnt public access. and for a none resident it is very frustrasting that we are told and miss led with the information that we recieve from public officals and then we are the ones paying the possible fines. I KNOW IT IS THE HUNTERS RESPONSIBLITY TO KNOW THE ACCESSES, but what are we to do when we are the ones miss led. i am not by any means a violator in any way and now i feel bad because the goat that i harvested last yr maybe was taken without permssion of the private land owner whose land that we crossed to get to public land and i feel really bad if that is the case.

hopefully we both can get some very clear direction for the following yrs to come.

and to southernwyo we know what the regulations say in black and white. its just the information we both have recieved that is and was grey.

like i said before i am gratefull with the info you all are giving to make the grey go away and make it black and white

trkytrack2
12-18-2011, 10:09 AM
That Game Warden is a first class asshole.

MOHunter
12-18-2011, 01:24 PM
Whoever told you that the BLM maps did not show road status did not know what they were talking about. The latest BLM surface land status maps clearly label which roads have an easement across private property. These are BLM, county, and USFS roads, state and interstate highways. Other public access roads such as WGFD easements are also clearly marked. The key at the bottom of the map will show which symbol represents each jurisdiction, in all cases by the road number within a box, trapezoid, circle, etc. If a road is not one of these and crosses private lands, the portion on the private property is NOT public access. Most of the newer edition BLM surface status maps also show easements across private lands with shading along the road in addition to the road label.

Unfortunately, it sounds like you talked to someone with that particular BLM office that either did not know their job, spoke out of turn, or did not know their head from a hole in the ground. It happens.

Colorado Cowboy, in Wyoming, it is clearly stated in the regulations that it is the sportsman's responsibility to know the land status where they are hunting, it can't be much more black and white.

Fantastic! I will be ordering some maps tomorrow. It sure would have saved me a ton of time, frustration, and arguments if someone would have simply told me this several months ago. With this information I can cross-reference my other maps and google earth to determine some good options for future use. Thanks for the info.

lineman1779
12-18-2011, 01:38 PM
these so called new maps may be boggus i have look hard this afternoon and all i am seeing are the same maps that i recieved in june of this year. and when i stop at the f&g office in newcastle they had the same maps that i already had. mohunter if you happen to find some that are new and up to date let me know

Colorado Cowboy
12-18-2011, 01:59 PM
The only trouble with the BLM maps is the ones I have from Wyoming all have a sticker on the front that says:
NOTICE-NOTICE-NOTICE
Due to Federal and State land exchanges the map may not accurately reflect land ownership status. Please consult the local BLM Field Office or USFS Ranger District for current updates of ownership status.

Also most of the maps I have are at least 10 years old and some are 20. Fat chance that you will get correct information. Most of the USFS offices I've been to don't have a clue as to changes in BLM and visa versa. The best thing I have done is to go to the county seat and get some landowner maps and overlay them on the BLM maps. Lots of work, but other than looking up the local ranchers, probably the best you can do.

SouthernWyo
12-18-2011, 08:06 PM
Turkeytrack, that game warden is enforcing Wyoming law. People intentionally crossing land that they know is private without permission are the assholes, they're also trespassers.

There is no "otherwise public access roads", they either are or are not. If a road crosses private land without a public easement, either for a mile or for ten feet, the road is not public access. You guys are getting upset because you're not hearing the answers that you want to hear. Just because you don't like it, doesn't mean that it's not true.

The BLM maps carry the caveat mentioned above because sometimes federal,and frequently state trust, lands are traded or sold, especially isolated tracts. Maps are updated every few years and in the interim, land status may change. COUNTY SPECIFIC OWNERSHIP TRACTS ARE THE MOST UP-TO-DATE SOURCES FOR LAND STATUS.

A good rule of thumb for the uninformed (or someone new to Wyoming) might be that if a road crosses private land and is not clearly marked (as in, with a county/state/federal sign), it is not public access. If you buy a BLM or USFS map and a road that you're interested in is not marked as a public access road, then assume that it's not.

lineman1779
12-19-2011, 07:33 PM
southernwyo where does someone come about a county specific ownership tracts

Colorado Cowboy
12-20-2011, 05:49 AM
I'm pretty sure the County offices are located in each County seat, check the local phone book for county listings. Here in Colorado we go to Cortez, Montezuma County seat. The County Clerk can direct you to the proper person. Our maps here are pretty reasonable, about $6.00 and list the parcel owners according to the tax assessors records. They are updated when the legal owner changes. They also show the boundries and parcel descriptions.

lineman1779
12-20-2011, 06:07 PM
i will look into that thanks

SouthernWyo
12-23-2011, 06:29 PM
Lineman,

ColoCowboy is correct, the county assessor's office for each specific county would be the place to start. Also, try Western Cartographers at: http://midwestplatmaps.com/

Although they don't carry the plats for all states and all counties, they do carry quite a few. I'm not sure how often they update ownership when private lands change hands. For Wyoming, they have plat books for Niobrara, Platte, and I belive, Goshen counties that I know of (counties with predominantly private lands.)

lineman1779
12-27-2011, 05:12 PM
thanks for the info