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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On Saturday the ranger at Buttonrock Preserve was running the names given him through the police to check if they were valid, and he was also running the plates on the cars in the parking lot that had kayak stackers on the roof. If kayakers gave him a fake name he was demanding to see their id when they got to their car and was threatening to have people arrested for lying to a federal officer. Fortunately no-one was arrested or even fined, but the situation with Buttonrock may be getting worse... :cry:

http://www.americanwhitewater.org/rivers/id/4049/
 

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How to fix this problem?

I heard from a friend, that the ranger said something about bringing up the issue with the Longmont City Councel. Has this been tried before? If so, what were the results, attitutes, etc?

I'd be willing to spend some of my free time on this. Even though my friend felt lucky to make it through without a swim and would take a bit of convincing to be talked into running it again anytime soon.

I find it quite ridiculous that we are not allowed to paddle on this reservoir. I saw a dog take a sh_t on the shore... that will get swept into the res as soon as it rains. We are allowed to boat in the creek that feeds the res, it is the same water, we were already in it, what is different about the lake? We need to understand their concerns before we take this on.

Badkins, great paddleing with you. Really appreciated the beta, great job guiding.

Another thing, I heard that if you use an alias from another state, the Longmont Police dept. won't be able to confirm the authenticity. Not that I'm recommending lying to an officer/ranger... that is illegal.

-d
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If I run it again, not this year, I will give the ranger a name from canada, eh? And I will park my truck below MNSV so he won't know where it is to run the plates... Of course that's adding 2 or 3 miles to an already taxing 13 mile day.

I find it quite ridiculous that we are not allowed to paddle on this reservoir. I saw a dog take a sh_t on the shore... that will get swept into the res as soon as it rains. We are allowed to boat in the creek that feeds the res, it is the same water, we were already in it, what is different about the lake? We need to understand their concerns before we take this on.
Ya, even the rangers will admit that they don't care if you paddle on the creek, it's only when you get to the lake that you are illegal. This is not even mentioning the horse back riding business right at the put-in, the highway, campgrounds and summer homes upstream of the dam. If it does go before the longmont city council we could mention that Morrison recently rescinded it's law against kayaking Bear Creek because they realized it had no impact on water quality. Also, Lyons is actively trying to bring in kayakers to paddle the lower section of the same damn creek. Finally, because of taking down the names of everyone they aprehend on the reservoir they should have a pretty accurate record of how many people paddle the upper section each year. I would bet the # is about 30 paddlers a year or less, that is a very small impact and for only about one month of the year. I doubt that number would go up much if it was legal because the creek itself does a great job of limiting use by being a wood infested wilderness class V+ run.
 

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OK, so I looked up a little info. The Longmont City council meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 7PM at the civic center at 350 Kimbark Street in Longmont. So for July we're talking the 13th and the 27th. There is also an online form to communicate to them at http://www.ci.longmont.co.us/city_council/

I was a little involved in the issues that went on two weeks ago at buttonrock even though I didn't boat. The ranger was a little agro. I don't think his reaching into the car and grabbing the collar off our dog without asking to run the rabies tag to verify the names we were giving was a generally acceptable thing to do (good for him Sara was really tired after I took her on a 14 mile hike...)

I'm more than happy to head to a city council meeting on either of the above dates as a resident of Longmont. I will look into how we get a topic on the agenda. I think it would be helpful to have as many Longmont resident boaters as possible represented. I think that we should mention that the city is spending $$$ to do a feasibility study of a whitewater park, while shutting off access to an awesome run that is FREE for them. (But probably doesn't bring any $$$ to the town since it is not in the town itself.) Please let me know if you are interested in going to city council since it would be great if we could organize a day to go with a bunch of people.

Kate
 

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I'm a little confused here. Under what authority/guise is a federal agent demanding everyones name and information? Is a law being broke...sorry if I missed something obvious....also what is the rangers name (essential for filing complaints about his/her behaviour)?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
http://www.ci.longmont.co.us/parks/fishing/buttonrock.htm

This is the only government page I was able to find on it. Buttonrock is clearly administered by the city of longmont, because of this I'm sceptical that the ranger is a federal officer. Unfortunatley I didn't get his name. Yes, it is in fact illegal to paddle across the reservoir, but much like the situation at Upper South Boulder Creek a few years ago, there is no alternative way out. There is supposedly a # you can call and have them pick up your boats just before the reservoir, but we tried this last year and they never showed up.

See also the link at the top to the AW description of the run, that should explain the situation...
 

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Just for clarification, it was a city of longmont ranger at the city owned buttonrock res. He was enforcing the city ordinance of no boats on the res. I didn't get his name.

I don't really want to complain about the ranger who was doing his job (maybe a little agro version of his job), but rather petition to change the policy about the resovoir. I think the issues of people breaking the current law and lying about their names might be better not highlighted to the city council. (Just my opinion...)
 

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Be diplomatic

The ButtonRock Water Commissioner was very good to us this year for our Whitewater festival and even freeflowed the river to us, which is really unprecedented here in Colorado. So please do not compromise areas where we have made gains and make sure you are diplomatic in the meeting while presenting a solution to this problem. Complaining or asking for a solution will certainly fall on deaf ears with any Town Council.
 

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To add a little more info to this subject; last week the US Supreme court ruled that it is legal for officers to ask the names of any individuals who are doing something illegel or suspected of doing something illegal. If the individuals deny the officers names the officer has the authority to arrest the person if the state has a law requiring people to give their names. There are 20 states who have this law, I am not sure if Colorado is one of them but I wouldn't be suprised.

That being said, be careful when giving false names or refusing to give names; it may be possible with a little research to find this law in Colorado - but just a heads up for those of you in this situation.

Good luck with city councils - they are notorioulsy narrow minded, but hopefully with a little work and some luck this situation can be resolved.

Zach.
 

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Everyone's got a job to do, but reaching *into* someone's car to check a dog's tags for rabies? When the dog isn't even in a public area and you aren't givng the guy reason to think you're presently armed and dangerous? Very questionable and probably a 4th Amendment violation. Sounds to me like someone was on a bit of a power trip and forgot the department policy on vehicle searches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I googled "giving false names" and "supreme court" and read the various new articles about this. It seems the law says that if a police officer asks for your name you must give it or be arrested. None of the articles mentioned Longmont Rangers... :wink:

FWIW: maybe we should let this cool for a while. If you go before city council and they talk to the rangers they could get an earful about asshole kayakers lying about everything. I think part of the problem is that one of the rangers somehow got ahold of CRCII and read the part about succesfully using aliases on UNSV. They are wise to the scam and specifically mentioned the info in CRCII last week.
 

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Thanks for everyone's input. I got a bunch of people from the Cwwa and we are going to put together a plan and will post once we've figured it out. Just a little more info though. It was actually the ranger who we were talking to who suggested going to the city council because he thought they might be willing to let boaters paddle across the res. So I don't think we would be stepping on his toes by doing that. He seemed to want to resolve the situation and let us paddle, but his superviser wanted the policy as it stood to be enforced. I don't think there's a negative view from the rangers of getting the policy changed, I just think they are doing their jobs enforcing what it is.

Arn, if you have contact info of people you have worked with, the CWWA is looking to get in touch with a few people to find out what the underlying concerns are and get a few people's opinions before we address the town concil so hopefully we can propose something that mitigates their concerns.

The ranger that we spole to was just fed up with the situation as I would be if I had to enforce a stupid policy and people were giving me crap about it. When you talked to him he was really quite helpful with suggestions on how we could get the policy changed. So I think in fact we owe it to this poor ranger to try and get this passed so he doesn't have to deal with the same crap next year.

(I think I've learned my lesson about volunteering to run NSV shuttles...)

Thanks,
Kate
 

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"A friend on mine" rode down to the parking lot in the ranger's truck and he turned out to be an alright guy. He was definitely annoyed with the situation and I got the feeling he didn't necessarily agree with the current city ordinance concerning kayaks on Buttonrock. Too bad about him losing his temper though... I think he was well into overtime when he had to deal with our group and I think your ordeal wrapped up about an hour after ours.

I would be willing to attend any council meetings. I can be contacted at 720-244-0075.

-d
 
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