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BLACKJACK

Public right of way - cattail sloughs??

7 posts in this topic

Just finished reading the post concerning right of ways and ditches, what about the right of way concerning big cattail swamps that abutt up to roadways? If there is open water/ice up to the road, is that open water public land?

I've hunted big sloughs that are partially on public hunting land and then stretch onto private land, I've always felt that as long as I got legal access through the public land, I could continue hunting the open water, even though it abutts private land. What do you think?

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That is a good question. I think you should contact a law professor. It sounds like you have the makings of a final exam.

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I dont think swamps & sloughs are considered navigatable waters,if open water isn't accessible from public right of way.While archery hunting Co Rd 134 north of hwy 12 west of co.rd.4,I watched CO & sheriff get and stop duck hunters from draging through catails 15-20 yds to hunt a slough in WPA where they entered was 50-70 yds north of WPA border.Maybe you know the WPA? access from Co. Rd 134 & co. rd 4.It was water too the road right of way but they destroyed catails or something? I breifly talked to one group as they drug the boat up to where I was.Bout 100-150 yd drag compared to right off the road,They wernt very talkable at the time but they were complaining alot.

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I have been told by a CO that as long as you are on water and not walking on land you are legal. All water is public it is just the land surrounding it that is owned. So as long as you are on the water adn not walking/pushing your boat thru the dead cattails you should be ok.

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Not all water is public, granted most is. Riparian and Littoral ownership (ownership of lands abutting rivers, streams and lakes) is a specialized field that requires surveyors and lawyers.

This topic comes up each year. Is it really so hard to find out who owns the property that you would like to hunt or have access through and ask for permision? And if that permission is not given do we have to try and find a way to get around it?

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I think I would just ask the nearest likely property owner. If they don't own the land it's likely they know who does.

Bob

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See my latest response under the "Right of Way" post.

Odds are, you definately will not have access without permission. Many ditches are not "public" either.

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