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BULLIED BY FORESTRY SERVICE NEAR METOLIUS

Discussion in 'Legal & Political Archive' started by bobu, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. bobu

    bobu Salem Member

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    This past weekend I went on anual camping trip with a group of guys where we hang out, shoot some guns, and play some cards. My first time on this trip was 6 years ago when an old friend invited me along saying it was all a bunch of guys that have been friends since high school. The guys had began the tradition 20 years earlier as an escape, and found a location on forestry land where there was nobody to bother. On friday part of the group went fishing while a few of us stayed behind and set up a target area and did some shooting. We strung some plastic gatorade bottles between two trees at about 50 yards with a hill that rose about 75 feet directly behind as a backstop. We shot for a couple hours off and on when three law enforcement vehicles came up the road (opposite of our shooting direction) into our camp. They asked if we had been shooting, which we openly answered yes and continued to show them our shooting area. After a few more questions they let us know that a camp down the road had called in about gunfire and they would advise them that there was no reason for concern and we appeared to be safe shooters. We visited with the three LEO's from Deschtes Co. and Black Butte a little longer and even showed off our guns a bit. They left saying that Forestry would likely stop by to check us out as well. About an hour later the Black Butte officer returned with two forestry vehicles behind explaining that they wanted him to show them to our camp. After isolating several of our group with questions like "who is your camp leader" and "which one of you is charge" they conferenced with the Black Butte officers before addressing the group. They then announced that they had "pre-loaded citations" for $700 each that they would issue if they heard any reports of gunfire. They stated that the fines were for shooting over a water way (a 10'-15' wide creek that ran adjacent to our camp) and shooting within 250' of an established camping area. I looked at Division 25 of the DOF regulations and find either of these rules. It was extremely obvious that one, if not both, of the forestry agents were very much against our right to shoot. If anyone has any input on the regs on shooting on public land it would be greatly appreciated.

    It has been pointed out to me that I was mistaken in my identification of ODF, they were apparently US Forest Service.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
    flyingace and (deleted member) like this.
  2. rjakin

    rjakin shedd New Member

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    Sorry for what happened. I do know that all law enforcement in that area are watching it very carefully. They are having a major problem with poaching at this time. Not that gives anyone an excuse to over step, but just thought that I would throw that information out.

    Now as far as the forestry dept. I do not have words to describe them at this time. Well at least none I should post.
     
  3. bobu

    bobu Salem Member

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    I do want to make sure it clear that we had no problem with law enforcement coming in to check us out. The three officers were doing there job, and were actually very pleasant to visit with once they realized we were not a threat. The forestry people were a completely different story.
     
  4. osterr1999

    osterr1999 Silverton, OR Active Member

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    Sounds like they were intentionally trying to be difficult.
     
  5. JAFO

    JAFO OR, USA Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

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    They were likely making up some of the rules but it does sound like you were in fact breaking some of the rules.

    Once you have some lawyer money set aside go back and make sure to use paper targets and not camp within 25' of a body of water.

    Were you on State or National forest land?
     
  6. 308

    308 ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ Platinum Supporter Silver Supporter

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    Meh, I probably wouldn't like it much if some guys were shooting near our 'established camping spot' and I love shooting...just sayin'
     
  7. chainsaw

    chainsaw East side of Or. Active Member

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    I would go to the nearest forest service office and ask for a copy of any laws concerning shooting guns on fs land.sounds to me like the tickets were a scare tactic.
     
  8. Just Me

    Just Me Peoples Republik of Oregon Active Member

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    I think you are talking about US Forest Service land. Their website states:




    Shooting sports activities have been enjoyed for generations and are welcomed on National Forest System lands.

    Both state and federal laws apply on National Forest System lands, so you also need to check on the state laws and county ordinances which may apply to the area you will be visiting. You also need to be in compliance with any general federal laws and regulations about weapons (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), etc). The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) and many commercial publications provide this information.

    The only regulations specific to use of weapons imposed by the Forest Service is that you cannot discharge a weapon within 150 yards of any structure/development or occupied area, within or into a cave, across or on a road or body of water, or in any manner that endangers a person. You also cannot use any tracer or incendiary ammunition. Forest Service regulations require that you also comply with all State laws regarding the use of firearms while hunting.

    If you are planning on visiting a designated Wilderness Area, the Regional Forester or Forest Supervisor has the option to implement a special local order which additionally prohibits the mere possession of a firearm within that Wilderness Area. Although this prohibition is not common, you should contact the Forest Supervisor's office to find out whether such a restriction has been imposed.

    We encourage you to use designated shooting areas or ranges. However, if you choose to shoot in an undesignated area, please ensure that your shooting does not damage any facilities or natural resources, disrupt other uses, or endanger public safety, and ensure you remove any targets, wads, shells, brass and other refuse with you when you leave. Be sure your shooting target area is free of rocks, as wildfires have resulting from sparks from ricochets. Be responsible for your action and follow outdoor ethics, in other words always, Leave No Trace and Tread Lightly! on federal lands.

    It is also a good idea regardless, just to contact the local Forest Service District or Forest Offices in advance of your visit to ask the same question, as they are more aware of local ranges and other opportunities, local orders or restrictions, issues and special conditions that may affect you.

    Enjoy your visit to our National Forests.
     
    gryghin and (deleted member) like this.
  9. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    In all my years of camping and shooting in Central Oregon this is the most excessive LEO 'visit' I have ever heard of in the woods. What I don't quite understand is why was Deschutes County showed up with NF LEOs and then Black Butte. Black Butte I suspect is more or less private and work for the Homeowner's Association so I am wondering why they were even there. You mentioned Black Butte returned with "Two Forestry vehicles" which I assume were National Forest LEOs - is that who they were? Shooting over water IS illegal and you can be fined for it but I still question all the involvement. Where were you camping specifically? - I know the area well.
     
  10. JAFO

    JAFO OR, USA Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

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    What law are you referring to when you say this?
     
  11. RVTECH

    RVTECH LaPine Well-Known Member

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    I do not know the law specifically but I believe I read it somewhere, once. If there is no such law then I stand corrected.
     
  12. taylor

    taylor Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    Its in the 3rd paragraph up above in green.
     
  13. DireWolf

    DireWolf Oregon Active Member

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    Well, there you go.
     
  14. JAFO

    JAFO OR, USA Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

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    The green post doesn't reference the law. It doesn't very well differentiate between laws and administrative regulations/rules either. It would be beneficial for the OP and others to know what the laws and/or regulations are. Relying on what someone says is the law or regulations/rules is not a good approach.

    For example the OP said he was told "250 feet from an established campground" and that green text says "150 yards of any structure/development or occupied area."

    The specific laws/rules would be good to know be they State or Federal.
     
  15. Asp

    Asp Oregon, the promise land. Active Member

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    ....
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2013
  16. Gunwheeler

    Gunwheeler Somewhere in De Nile Active Member

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    Check out 36CFR261.10 (d) (1) &(2). The fine for (1) is $200 for (2) is $500. Very rarely do you get charged with both.

    You find a safe place to shoot (on USFS land). It meets all the safety standards for safe shooting. After shooting you decide this is also a good place to camp. You set up camp. May you now shoot as you were before you set up camp? Check out 36CFR 261.10 (d)(1).
     
  17. Gunwheeler

    Gunwheeler Somewhere in De Nile Active Member

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  18. 3MTA3

    3MTA3 DMZ between Liberty and Tyranny Behind Enemy Lines Bronze Supporter

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    Doesn't that paragraph refer to designated Wilderness Areas? In any event, if people were complaining I'd be a good neighbor and relocate my shooting if not my camp somewhere else.
     
  19. pchewn

    pchewn Beaverton Oregon USA Well-Known Member

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    What is "adjacent" to what in section 2 ???? I'm having trouble figuring out if it is illegal to fire on or across a body of water that is NOT adjacent to a road.... Does a body of water include a puddle? What about a dry stream? It surely is not very clearly written.
     
  20. ZigZagZeke

    ZigZagZeke Eugene Silver Supporter Silver Supporter 2015 Volunteer

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    If I had to make a wild guess I'd say the Black Butte folks (HooDoo Recreational Properties) don't like the sound of gunfire and sicked the sheriff on you, and when that didn't work they complained to USFS. They apparently operate several USFS campgrounds in the area, and they appeal to "nature lovers" from the big city.
     
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