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Thread: 12,000 Ossippee acres closed

  1. #211
    Banned Kevin Rooney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chomp View Post
    From the article:

    Within the agreement, Garrison admitted to marking trails, cutting vegetation and applying herbicides on private land without owners' permission. He also created maps, among them "The Trail Bandit Map of the Ossipee Mountains of New Hampshire," which he sold on the internet and to local retail outlets.
    From the comments:

    Also, why is there no mention of the $1,400,000.00 of Federal tax dollars given to the logging company in exchange for, amongst other things, guaranteed public access? There were no hiking trails depicted on the Forest Legacy Tract on that 'unauthorized map' that weren't already established and protected by our Federal tax dollars.

  2. #212
    Senior Member chomp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rooney View Post
    From the comments:

    Also, why is there no mention of the $1,400,000.00 of Federal tax dollars given to the logging company in exchange for, amongst other things, guaranteed public access? There were no hiking trails depicted on the Forest Legacy Tract on that 'unauthorized map' that weren't already established and protected by our Federal tax dollars.
    The State of New Hampshire owns the easement, and President Jeff Coombs of the Chocorua Forestlands consulted with the state before posting no trespassing signs. So the landowner got permission from the easement owner before posting the land. That's why this wasn't mentioned in the latest article. It was mentioned here:

    http://ossipeelake.org/news/2009/08/...e-range-lands/

  3. #213
    Poobah Emeritus darren's Avatar
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    I still can not believe that there is any confusion as to what the public gets for its $1.4 million. Do the math. The private owners of the land got about $100 per acre. If you own land, would you sell it for $100 an acre? No, of course not. That is why it was not sold. It was placed into an agreement with private people maintaining ownership and joint control with the state. That is why the private oweners of theland checked with and got permission of the state when they posted it.

    The land owner could have sold the land for much more money and none of us would have access to it. So instead of complaining about how the $1.4M gets the public the "right" to do whatever you want want on pulic land, figure it out....it is NOT public land and you do not have the right to use it other than those stated in the agreement.

    Duh.

    - darren
    Kūlia i ka nuu

  4. #214
    Senior Member RoySwkr's Avatar
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    I'm sure that everybody is happy about 2 things in the Ossipee Range:
    * The Chocorua Forest Lands parcel has been reopened to the previously-permitted uses
    * Trail Bandit has agreed not to cut more trails on private land without permission

    Quote Originally Posted by darren View Post
    it is NOT public land and you do not have the right to use it other than those stated in the agreement.
    You are missing the point - the landowner posted the land against uses allowed in the agreement and the state temporarily agreed - of course this will make people mad and I'm surprised no lawsuit was filed.

    If too many people are using the Bayle Mtn Trail and it's eroding seriously, it might make sense to close that trail until it can be stabilized. It makes no sense whatever to close it because people are digging minerals or camping elsewhere. The illegal users needed equipment not carried by day hikers and it would have been easy to distinguish them. But rather than prosecuting the actual illegal campers and miners the landowner and state chose to pick on Trail Bandit who was probably guilty of neither.

    And while I can see why owners of adjoining property might be upset that their land was shown on a map without property lines showing the easement, the easement seller should realize that it is unreasonable to hike on 12,000 acres without a map and hikers would no doubt be fined for doing so if they got lost. Do they really want lost people wandering around, or even worse, hordes of rescuers out that night trying to find them?

  5. #215
    Senior Member Waumbek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoySwkr View Post
    And while I can see why owners of adjoining property might be upset that their land was shown on a map without property lines showing the easement, the easement seller should realize that it is unreasonable to hike on 12,000 acres without a map and hikers would no doubt be fined for doing so if they got lost. Do they really want lost people wandering around, or even worse, hordes of rescuers out that night trying to find them?
    You keep asserting, here and in the newspapers, that people will "no doubt" be fined for hiking in the Ossipees without a map and getting lost, implying that NH Fish & Game has supported the Bandit map and that Bandit's map has aided search and rescue. This is misleading.

  6. #216
    Senior Member Snowflea's Avatar
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    In yesterday's (12/11/09) USA Today, this issue was the New Hampshire "blurb of the day," the section where they do little thumbprint news items on each of the 50 states. Anybody else see it?

    (No, I didn't buy the paper; got it free at hotel.)

  7. #217
    Senior Member Hampshire's Avatar
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    I did. Interesting condition to the reopening.

  8. #218
    Senior Member chomp's Avatar
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    I still don't see what the big deal. The State of New Hampshire, owners of the recreation easement, condoned the closure of the land due to repeated abuses. This is no different than, say, closing a highway rest area because they are being used for drug deals. If anything, the fact that the state went to such extremes in closing this area should highlight the levels of abuse going on inside the area. (and I realize that the list of complaints goes beyond Trail Bandit).

    In general, New Hampshire takes property owner rights very seriously. I feel like in this case, they decided to err on the side of caution when considering just how many rights the landowner retained after selling off the easement. Its consistant with the philosophy of New Hampshire in general, and overall I think that it was handled extremely well.

    Here is my 2 cent impression of what happened. There were abuses of the land. The landowners complained. The state condoned the closing of the land. The state worked with the landowners to resolve some of the problem and establish new guidelines for future recreation use of the area. The land is re-opened to the public. Sounds like government working like it was intended to.

  9. #219
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chomp View Post
    Here is my 2 cent impression of what happened. There were abuses of the land. The landowners complained. The state condoned the closing of the land. The state worked with the landowners to resolve some of the problem and establish new guidelines for future recreation use of the area. The land is re-opened to the public. Sounds like government working like it was intended to.
    I am totally going to agree here. Is this not a "CONSERVATION" Easement. The bylaws of the agreement were broken and the Landowners were totally within their rights to act the way they did. IMO a no brainer and nothing else.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

  10. #220
    Senior Member RoySwkr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waumbek View Post
    You keep asserting, here and in the newspapers, that people will "no doubt" be fined for hiking in the Ossipees without a map and getting lost, implying that NH Fish & Game has supported the Bandit map and that Bandit's map has aided search and rescue. This is misleading.
    I doubt that F&G supported the TB map and I don't mean to imply that they did. But the HikeSafe coalition lists a map as the first of 10 essentials:
    http://www.hikesafe.com/index.php/pl..._10_essentials

    I have repeatedly stated that I would prefer a better map with property boundaries, but until the trails bureau or the landowner provide one the TB map is the best we have and the state is out of line to object to its publication.

    Quote Originally Posted by skiguy View Post
    I am totally going to agree here. Is this not a "CONSERVATION" Easement. The bylaws of the agreement were broken and the Landowners were totally within their rights to act the way they did. IMO a no brainer and nothing else.
    Only partially, it is also a RECREATION easement. We have paid to make certain uses of this property and as long as those uses don't damage the property they should be allowed to continue. The trail clearers, fire builders, and mineral collectors were all violating the law and if caught should be prosecuted and forced to pay restitution but that is no excuse to close the property to legal uses when it is easy to distinguish the illegal users by their equipment.

  11. #221
    Banned Kevin Rooney's Avatar
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    I think if we've learned anything from this incident it's this: Conservation/recreation easements by themselves are not enough to provide public access to land. There needs to be some type of funding mechanism to provide ongoing support of trails (whether they be hiking, snowmobile, butterfly watching, whatever), and that should likely include maps. It's not enough to use federal taxpayer dollars, purchase some form of easement and hand over control to some local/state agency - funds to manage the land, build/maintain trails, put up signs, create parking areas and all the rest - in the real world an easement is not enough.

    If there are VFTT'ers who labor to create these easements and related mechanisms - please put your considerable skills to work and create sustainable, funded mechanisms to support and maintain this type of public space over the long term.

  12. #222
    Senior Member Amicus's Avatar
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    Trail Bandit and Mary labored hours you wouldn't believe to save fading trails in the Ossipees, over a span of years. On top of that, he spent hard cash he knew he'd never get back to print a map so that others could see what they'd preserved. His reward - multiple blows to the head, because he crossed (inadvertantly) a couple of powerful owners who have done a great job of propagandizing, with help from all the wrong places.

  13. #223
    Senior Member --M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amicus View Post
    Trail Bandit and Mary labored hours you wouldn't believe to save fading trails in the Ossipees, over a span of years. On top of that, he spent hard cash he knew he'd never get back to print a map so that others could see what they'd preserved. His reward - multiple blows to the head, because he crossed (inadvertantly) a couple of powerful owners who have done a great job of propagandizing, with help from all the wrong places.
    The December 10, 2009, Concord Monitor article referenced by Carole states...
    "Within the agreement, Garrison admitted to marking trails, cutting vegetation and applying herbicides on private land without owners' permission."
    Is this untrue? I'm shocked to read that this was admitted, given the assertions of innocent, well-intentioned, helpful behavior by the accused. How could he admit to these things? Does the Monitor owe him an apology and a libel settlement?

    It goes on to state that...
    Garrison agreed not to enter onto private land in New Hampshire to mark, map or locate trails without permission of the landowner, and he can no longer produce maps of private land in the state. In exchange, the state agreed to discontinue its investigation against Garrison, according to the agreement. The state attorney general's office will monitor his compliance.
    and that...
    "Some of the neighboring landowners have decided to keep their land posted."
    So, does this mean that "powerful owners" includes neighbors to Chocorua Forestlands and the state Attorney General? Has the Monitor gotten it wrong here as well?

    Why would Mr. Garrison agree to such terms if they had no merit? Why would the NH Attorney General insist on them? Why are these neighboring (private) landowners apparently being so vindictive?

    Or, Amicus, is your propaganda as partisan as anyone else's?

    This case has always seemed to this outside observer to be about a rather basic disrespect.

    I'm very pleased to see the hiking community on these pages repudiate Trail Bandit's presumed representation of their interests. He never spoke for me, and I'm grateful that the damage he did will probably not prevent me from hiking the Ossippee ring dike, where permitted.

    --Mike.

  14. #224
    Senior Member arghman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rooney View Post
    If there are VFTT'ers who labor to create these easements and related mechanisms - please put your considerable skills to work and create sustainable, funded mechanisms to support and maintain this type of public space over the long term.
    The land trusts have wised up in recent years, and now in reward for their donation of a conservation easement, most easement donors are asked to contribute several thousand dollars in order to fund stewardship costs in the coming years/decades/centuries.
    --Jason
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  15. #225
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoySwkr View Post
    Only partially, it is also a RECREATION easement. We have paid to make certain uses of this property and as long as those uses don't damage the property they should be allowed to continue. The trail clearers, fire builders, and mineral collectors were all violating the law and if caught should be prosecuted and forced to pay restitution but that is no excuse to close the property to legal uses when it is easy to distinguish the illegal users by their equipment.
    It is absolutely an excuse. If the line between Conservation and Recreation is that blurred than it should have been closed alot sooner.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

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