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Old 04-10-2005   #1
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 305
I don't understand

Has anyone tried to pass/press the public access issue to a waterway like several coastal community's have for beach access??? IE: public corridors thru private land. I am new to Colorado and do not understand how I can be told that I can not be allowed to get to the river???? I know that several states have the high water mark/public access laws that allow me to pass along/thru to a stream edge/beach to fish or boat, do we not have that here??? I understand the trespass laws that keep me from camping on private land but isn't access to a navagiable waterway overseen by the Federal Gov./Coast Guard under Navagation Laws???

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Old 04-10-2005   #2
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as i understand the only time you can legally go onto privte land in co. is to portage, and you will still probabally catch flack and possibily have to deal with the po. po. if the land owners are arses. I'm shure others know more about this topic.
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Old 04-10-2005   #3
Charc in = charc out
ToddG's Avatar
Seattle, Washington
Paddling Since: 1992
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 475
There's nothing cut & dry about it. For some lengthy explanation that will help clarify check the link:
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Old 04-10-2005   #4
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Dillon, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
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Welcome to Colorado

Welcome to Colorado....
"Believe me, my young friend, (said the water rat somlemnly), there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Simply messing...." -The Wind in the Willows
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Old 04-10-2005   #5
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 89
Yea, welcome to Colorado. This ain't progressive California.

For one thing, kayaking doesn't have the political clout of people wanting beach access.

Be glad we have the rights we do have. And be careful of property owners waving guns who don't agree with the courts. I wouldn't try to antagonize them.
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Old 04-10-2005   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 567
All land owners own to the middle of the river including the rocks. So you can float but even if you are standing in the water you are tresspassing. Other people know the specifics better but landowners have even strung cables and fell trees trying to stop people from floating rivers, Ie lake fork of Gunni. All water and land rights laws in Colorado seem to revolve around a use it or lose it mining mentallity. If you do not defend your claim someone might start working it and take your land, ie aspen mountain lost a couple prime acres just recently to someone starting to mine at the base of it.
friend of the fork, knife, and spoon
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Old 04-11-2005   #7
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Steamboat Springs, CO
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 213
heres the 411

A Long, Long Time ago in a stater Far, Far away..........

Heres the deal, "Civil" vs "Criminal" tresspassing. I learned this while civily tresspassing on the Yampa river upstream of Steamboat Springs, A lawyer named Mike Holloran, who is also the lawyer for the Good ole Boys errr, I mean Cattlemans association.

Civil tresspassing....when you float by like we do 99% of the time.

Criminal Tresspassing...... when you "touch" "thier" land.

Now, If you have legally accessed a river and need to portage some rednecks barbwire across the river and they catch you...You may sue them for thier land because they are interferring with sportsmans rights. :P
Heres a doosie....round here yonder in Routt County , most Redn...errr ranchers build barbwire fences right up to the bridge abutments, yes public bridges on public land. I believe the bridge easment is 15 feet in all directions owned by public.They have no right to do this but do assume it.
Here is the real issue in Colorado and possibly the west.
Navigability laws. As a local case I know pretty well, the Yampa, upper section through Redn...err Routt county.
Navigability of a waterway, is the Yampa Navigable? Well if you are in a 60-70 foot sloop like in the pioneer days when we were running the indians off thier homes, no, its not navigable, now evolve 150 years, we have plastic kayaks and roylex whitewater canoes (my personal favorite), yes it is navigible, but, there is enough support not to change this pesky law.
Now, most cases would be thrown out here in Redn...errr Routt county, if someone were to be actually charged. This is actually what we need, then we can fight the case.
Years ago, my stepfather tried to get this pesky maritime rule changed with no avail.

Hope this helps. Im not terribly familiar with the maritime laws, perhaps its time to learn and shove those cows where they belong, back east, doh!

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