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Settling a land use dispute

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I just got back from riding today, and I got some questions after getting kicked out of a riding area. I've been burning in some new trails, just got done laying out about 4 miles of trails last weekend (between northern and southern in R.R. NM for those of you who know the area). Came out today with a group to get this thing burned in, and right as we get to the start we get stopped by a rancher on a horse. He claimed he owned the land (this is one huge chunk of land), and told us to get off. We left, but im not about to give up on this trail, it had some great terrain. I really doubt he does own all that land, or any land at all. If he does own the land, I have no problem, ill just give up on the whole thing, but I suspect someone has leased him a portion of the land for his cattle, and since it is not marked, i want to find the boundaries. I can get the GPS coordinates, but where can i find what land i am allowed to ride on and what im not allowed to? After talking to some guys, i found out that supposedly the whole riding area is privately owned by a contractor out of the state, who has allowed riders to use the area. Who could I contact about this? Thanks everyone

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Is it Federal (BLM,USFS) or private? Either way you should know who owns it before you start doing anything. If it's private land the County tax assessor or local ORV club may be able to help. Good luck.

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This is exactly what gives us riders a bad name. Someone who goes out and rides where ever they feel and has no idea if its legal to ride there. Hey buddy was it marked with a ORV trail signs? Were you given permission by the owner? So stay out, its not your right to go where ever you feel.

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you need to start searching blm, dnr, dfw, and usfs websites to see if you can find maps for the area in question. your local land assessor can probably help as well.

if it is privately held land then you should stop riding there. however, in my experience, if there are no fences with signs posted then it's most likely land that is federally owned that somebody has leased grazing rights to. that's why there's no fences because the public still has a right to access it and he's just trying to scare you off.

but you definitely need to find out who owns the land so you're prepared to have a discussion next time you run into someone if you have a legal right to be there. if it is privately owned then you should move on to another place or maybe approach the landowner with an offer of some sort. like maybe in return for allowing you access you'll help to keep an eye out for illegal dumpers, meth labs and illegal marijuana grow sites.

idk, just the way i'd do it.

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I just got back from riding today, and I got some questions after getting kicked out of a riding area. I've been burning in some new trails, just got done laying out about 4 miles of trails last weekend (between northern and southern in R.R. NM for those of you who know the area). Came out today with a group to get this thing burned in, and right as we get to the start we get stopped by a rancher on a horse. He claimed he owned the land (this is one huge chunk of land), and told us to get off. We left, but im not about to give up on this trail, it had some great terrain. I really doubt he does own all that land, or any land at all. If he does own the land, I have no problem, ill just give up on the whole thing, but I suspect someone has leased him a portion of the land for his cattle, and since it is not marked, i want to find the boundaries. I can get the GPS coordinates, but where can i find what land i am allowed to ride on and what im not allowed to? After talking to some guys, i found out that supposedly the whole riding area is privately owned by a contractor out of the state, who has allowed riders to use the area. Who could I contact about this? Thanks everyone

Go to the town tax assessor and look at a tax map. The maps show how the area is divided up, and who owns and/or pays the tax for each parcel. They will also have the mailing address of the owner.

JayC

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You have really no idea who owns the land? You don't even know if it is public or private? You shouldn't be "burning in" trails on private property, and most public lands have restrictions that prohibit creating trails willy nilly.

I recommend that you do some homework before you continue.

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Obviously if it is private land, stay off it. If it turns out to be BLM, or USFS land, you still can't go building new trails without agency approval. Good luck getting approval from either of those.

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The whole area its private land. I have never personally talked to the owner but a friend of mine raked to him years ago. Supposedly he us a contractor but he has no plans for the land yet and is allowing rudders to use it. For those of you pissed about me burning in a new trail, you have obviously never seen this area. This is the largest and most used riding area in the state, I am simply cutting in a loop in an area that no one has yet. A rancher claimed he owned land right in the middle of my loop, I'm just trying to verify this.

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Go to the town tax assessor and look at a tax map. The maps show how the area is divided up, and who owns and/or pays the tax for each parcel. They will also have the mailing address of the owner.

JayC

Where would i go to talk to a tax assessor?

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This is exactly what gives us riders a bad name. Someone who goes out and rides where ever they feel and has no idea if its legal to ride there. Hey buddy was it marked with a ORV trail signs? Were you given permission by the owner? So stay out, its not your right to go where ever you feel.

for the most part, there's no such thing out here. The area he's talking about has been ridden on since Yamaha was building the IT series.

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Where would i go to talk to a tax assessor?

Town hall. Call them and ask for the assessors office. Then ask them about looking at a tax map. The town might also be part of a GIS survey - which is basically a map database, allowing you to search the tax map and directly pull all relevant information via the 'net.

When you get a hold of the assessor's office, tell them that you are trying to find out who owns land at a specific GPS coordinate and they should be able to tell you the best way to proceed.

JayC

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No, the assessor is in the county building. Usually the same place as the county court house.

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No, the assessor is in the county building. Usually the same place as the county court house.

County building, town hall...tomato, tomahto...

If you guys out west have your property taxes controlled by county, then county "building" is correct. Here in the Great North-East, at least, towns/cities control their own budgets and the assessor's office is part of town govt.

JayC

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Thanks for the help everyone. I'll get some coordinates and see if i cant figure out who actually owns this area.

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County building, town hall...tomato, tomahto...

If you guys out west have your property taxes controlled by county, then county "building" is correct. Here in the Great North-East, at least, towns/cities control their own budgets and the assessor's office is part of town govt.

JayC

I'm in The Great Northeast too!!!! But, I'm with the other dude, whatever county the land resides in will have the info...and that's coming from someone who lives in a commonwealth state.

I say let the kid ride. I love how the haters jump down his throat. :bonk: If I was out there I'd burn in some trails with you. :smirk:

You know, sometimes not saying anything will bring less attention to the fact.

Our argument in the Great Northeast that I'm familiar with is...

Guy confronts our group when we're stopped.

We say that we're not hurting anything, just want to ride.

Guy says "garble, complain, bla bla bla"

We say "natural erosion is worse bla bla bla"

Eventually we all get along and we go back to riding the same place we've been for 20+ years.

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After you go to the courthouse and find out who the owner is I would call him and play lets make a deal. Make him a deal to watch his land and keep an eye on the guy you think maybe leasing. If the owner has leased it go to the guy who has the cattle same thing lets make a deal You and your buddies keep an eye on his cattle and he lets you ride. good luck.

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