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No Metal Detcting On BLM?!?!?!


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#1 Purplehays

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 06:48 AM

I got this story from a guy at work last night, at least second or third hand. He told me that another guy from work was somewhere up here in N. Cal or N. Nev, this weekend and got rushed by a BLM Ranger. The guy from work was metal detecting and the Ranger told him he could not metal detect on BLM land. Supposedly he was also written a ticket. The guy from work is a peace officer, so he wrote down the Rangers name, badge number and he plans on writing his own report on this. I am gonna track him down and get his side of the story. I will let you all know what is up... Take care, Chris

#2 Reno Chris

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 09:36 AM

There are some designated historic stes you cant detect on, plus there are plenty of BLM rangers who have no clue as to what the laws really say, and sometimes when its a third hand rumor, the facts get distorted as they are passed from person to person, but I am interested to hear what its all about.

Chris

#3 FlakMagnet

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 09:44 AM

Hi Chris,

I have heard versions of this story as well...
I too am interested in hearing what you turn up.
It's a topic we all need to stay current on.
Thanks.



Flak

#4 Emptypockets

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 09:45 AM

I am in and out of the BLM office here in Redding, CA. a lot but have heard nothing nor have I seen any postings in the window or on their board. Just checked the web site but no news there. I think it is like Chris has said a no clue Ranger but most likely just another rumor.
Howard

#5 Purplehays

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 10:50 AM

I'm hopin' it's just some A hole, being a big man behind his badge. Hopefully I'll find out this afternoon or evenin' and I will let you all know...

#6 Goldbug Ron

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 06:18 PM

I don't know where this was supposed to have happened, but I personally know the BLM ranger in Redding and have spoken with him in his office and out in the field. He knows all about detecting on BLM land. He would not have hassled anyone unless a person was doing something else illegal. Such as riding a quad on posted land.
Goldbug Ron

#7 Chris Gholson

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 07:08 PM

Hi Purplehays,

I've been stopped a few times by Forest Rangers around Prescott, but never had any trouble with the BLM. Heck, in the last 10 years I think I've only bumped into one BLM ranger in Arizona, and he only waved as he drove by (probably with the AC on full blast tongue.gif ). Unless he was detecting on a protected site I highly doubt the ticket would stand up in court. Keep us posted...
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#8 Steve Herschbach

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 08:28 PM

BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT -

43 C.F.R. Subpart 3809—Surface Management
Title 43 - Public Lands: Interior

3809.5

(1) Casual use generally includes the collection of geochemical, rock, soil, or mineral specimens using hand tools; hand panning; or non-motorized sluicing. It may include use of small portable suction dredges. It also generally includes use of metal detectors, gold spears and other battery-operated devices for sensing the presence of minerals, and hand and battery-operated drywashers. Operators may use motorized vehicles for casual use activities provided the use is consistent with the regulations governing such use (part 8340 of this title), off-road vehicle use designations contained in BLM land-use plans, and the terms of temporary closures ordered by BLM.

(2) Casual use does not include use of mechanized earth-moving equipment, truck-mounted drilling equipment, motorized vehicles in areas when designated as closed to “off-road vehicles” as defined in §8340.0–5 of this title, chemicals, or explosives. It also does not include “occupancy” as defined in §3715.0–5 of this title or operations in areas where the cumulative effects of the activities result in more than negligible disturbance.

#9 fredmason

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Posted 04 February 2009 - 09:13 AM

The issue is that once an ill-informed, over zealous Officer writes the ticket YOU have to prove your innocence...there is an assumption of guilt when a citation is written ( no matter what the constitution says)
You now have the choice to defend...get a lawyer or yield and pay, either way the citizen gets the big screw!

Fred

#10 sawmill

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Posted 04 February 2009 - 03:37 PM

This whole story sounds pretty fishy. I believe the fellow is leaving
out the real reason for the ticket.
BLM law enforcement officers are well trained in the rules and regs.
They don't write tickets or make an arrest unless they have a real
case.
There is certain places on BLM land that is off limits to prospecting,
detecting,or mining.
The old Barney Fife cop thing does not apply anymore. BLM and Forest
Service law enforcement officers go through the same training and tests
as the FBI and all Federal officers do.

There is a difference between a law enforcement officer and patrol
persons. Any Forest Service or BLM officer can make an arrest or
write a ticket on Federal land,or detain someone until the enforcement
officer shows up. They are not armed,but do have the authority to
enforce the laws. Some of these guys or girls do get a little out in left
field at times,and some of their advice or understanding of the laws
gets kinda fuzzy.
Also both agencies have campground patrol people ,they can write
tickets too or call for help to arrest someone.
If a real BLM or Forest Service law enforcement officer or special
agent shows up and says you are in trouble,you may have a real
problem,because they don't joke around.

I know several Federal cops,and all of them are real professionals.
Some are kind of hard nosed,but most are just doing their job and
are decent people. The trouble with special agent's is that nine times
out of ten ,you won't know who he or she is until they flash a badge.
If you have a problem understanding why they are bothering you,
they pack,a federal code and law book with them. They will be happy
to share it with you,but most can recite the codes and laws forward
and backwards. The real enforcement officers can read and comprehend
pretty darn good though.

#11 trinityau

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Posted 04 February 2009 - 05:51 PM

TRINITYAU HERE, I AM OUT OF WEAVERVILLE, CA. , I DO MOST OF MY HUNTING IN THE REDDING AREA. I DO NOT KNOW WHERE THIS INCIDENT WAS SUPPOSE TO HAVE HAPPENED. I HAVE HAD NO PROBLEMS WITH THE LOCAL BLM OFFICER AS FAR AS METAL DETECTING. THIS OFFICER SERVES FOUR COUNTIES. THE PROBLEM I HAVE SEEN AND THIS IS ONGOING RIGHT NOW, IS PEOPLE DETECTING AND GETTING CARRIED AWAY WITH THEIR DIGGING. I AM TALKING ABOUT TRENCHES AND PITS AND COMPLETE DESTRUCTION OF ANY AND ALL PLANT LIFE AND WATERCOURSES, TO INCLUDE CUTTING TREES WITH A CHAINSAW. THIS AREA IS BLM, AND YES YOU CAN DIG AND MINE RECREATIONALLY ON BLM LAND. THE PROBLEM IS , CITY OF REDDING HAS SOME SORT OF ARRANGEMENT WITH THE LOCAL BLM AND ALMOST ALL BLM LAND THAT SURROUNDS CITY OF REDDING IS IN THIS DEAL. I DONT KNOW IF THIS OCCURS ANYWHERE ELSE IN CALIFORNIA OR NOT. THESE AREAS ARE KNOWN AS GREEN ZONES. EITHER WAY, PEOPLE THAT CHOOSE TO DETECT IN THESE AREAS ARE UNDER ALOT MORE SCRUTINY BY THE BLM BECAUSE OF THE ABOVE ACTIONS BY THE FEW THAT CONTINUE TO THINK THEY ARE THE ONLY ONES ON THE PLANET. SEVERAL OF THESE AREAS ARE ALSO CONNECTED TO THE WHISKEYTOWN NATIONAL RECREATION AREA AND THE ULTIMATE GOAL BY GOVERNMENT IS TO HAVE THESE FEW AREAS WE HAVE LEFT TO HUNT ON BECOME PART OF WHISKEYTOWN NATIONAL RECREATION AREA. WHEN THAT HAPPENS THERE WILL BE NO MORE LEGAL DETECTING ON THESE LANDS. SO...........WE UP HERE IN REDDING HAVE TO WATCH OUR ACTIONS. THESE AREAS ARE HOME ALSO TO TRAIL SYSTEMS, BICYCLE TRAILS, HORSE TRAILS , PEOPLE TRAILS ,HANDICAP TRAILS, AND ALMOST ANYWHERE YOU GO ON THESE LANDS HERE IN REDDING YOU CAN AND WILL BE SEEN. I WOULD LIKE TO CONTINUE WITH THIS HOBBY FOR A FEW MORE YEARS BEFORE THEY SHUT EVERYTHING DOWN. THE ACTIONS ABOVE ARE BY JUST A VERY FEW PEOPLE, AND THE BLM IS ON TOP THIS PARTICULAR PROBLEM AND IT IS BEING ADDRESSED. THE OTHER OFFICERS ( FOREST SERVICE AND FISH AND GAME ) IN THE AREA HAVE ALWAYS BEEN PRETTY WELL VERSED IN THE LAW AND HAVE TREATED PEOPLE PRETTY FAIRLY IN THE PAST AS FAR AS I HAVE SEEN. I AM THINKING THERE IS SOMETHING ELSE GOING ON AND THE WHOLE STORY IS NOT BEING TOLD.

TRINITYAU

#12 Emptypockets

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Posted 05 February 2009 - 12:11 AM

Hi trinityau,
I must say that I have not witnessed the destruction that you are claiming is going on here in the Redding area. Please send me the areas so I may take a look see. I have worked areas off of Clear Creek, Walker Mind, Rock Creek, and Whiskey Creek to name a few. I have come across the occasional pick hole that wasn’t filled back in. But they were only a couple inches deep and took me a second to kick some dirt in them. But open trenches and the complete destruction of any and all plant life and water courses? (As you stated)
This I must see for myself!! I know several prospectors in and around Redding and I belong to the Shasta Miners & Prospectors Organization. I have not met anyone who would do such a thing. If there has been damage done, we as prospectors should get together and put a weekend aside to make repairs.
Howard

#13 trinityau

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Posted 05 February 2009 - 07:49 PM

HI EMPTYPOCKETS, PM ME FOR PHONE NUMBER..............



TRINITYAU

#14 grubstake

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Posted 05 February 2009 - 08:12 PM

I thought I'd chime in here, Ray invited my uncle and I and a couple of others to detect up in the Redding area, about two years ago, I have seen first hand just what he is talking about, there were areas, where the brush had been completly cleared, large holes, and lots of trash. There was roadside dumping on the way in we saw, it looked like someone cleaned there garage out, golf bag, golf clubs, lots of other household trash too. and many unfilled dig holes. Grubstake We also saw at one place, quad trailers and pickups, parked, in a no! off road vehicle area, with quad tracks going from the trailers to the woods. places where people had taken a dump and not even bothered to dig a hole and cover it. I think some of the trail riders prob. did that.
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#15 Purplehays

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Posted 20 February 2009 - 12:19 PM

Hi everybody, I finally talked to Jake and got his story. He was parked on the edge of the highway and was detecting in some rolling hills a short distance away. A BLM ranger aproached him and asked what he was doing. He said he was looking for "coins and relics". The ranger said it was illegal and that he could write him a ticket, so Jake turned off his machine and started to walk back to his truck, the ranger told him to "get back here" Jake continued to walk and it made the ranger more mad. Jake turned around and started to walk back towards the ranger and he told Jake to "drop your shovel", then the ranger took an aggresive stance and said that he could right him a ticket, call CHP and Sherrifs and arrest him. Jake got to leave without a ticket or being arrested. Jake said the ranger was a young, aggressive guy and got his name. He filed a complaint with the rangers supervisor and the supervisor appologised and said he would talk to the ranger. It sounds to me like the ranger was just being aggresive, but I know I would not want to be harassed like that. I had an experience years ago at Brandy Creek beach at Whiskeytown near Redding. I had no clue about not detecting on National Park. My girlfriend was with me, while I was detecing along looking for coins and jewelry. I was finding modern coins and trash amongst all the other dig holes. After a while a park ranger and another park worker started walking towards me, I pulled down my headphones and said "am I not supposed to be doing this?" and he kinda laughed and said "no", so I turned off my machine. He asked what I had found. I showed him the few coins I had found and the pocketful of trash. I asked if he wanted me to turn in the coins and he laughed again and said no, "if ya woulda found gold we woulda had to confiscate it from ya" He asked for ID and I said it was up in the parking lot in my jeep and I would be happy to get it for him, he said "don't worrry about it" and they walked back up to the parking lot. My girlfriend and I followed a short distance behind. Half way back my girl stops and picks something up from the sand, she said you're never gonna believe what I just found, then revealed a black hills gold ring found on the surface. It was a good day!!! I believe there are a lot of good folks working for BLM and Forest Service, but once in a while you run into a holes, just like in Jakes case. Take care all, Chris

I realize that old coins can be considered "antiquities,but they are still also considered "spendable" money, are they not?

#16 FrogMick

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 12:38 AM

The BLM Ranger was correct, it was illegal and he could write Jake a ticket. Because Jake said he was looking for "coins and relics". That is illegal on any federally controlled public land. It has nothing to do with prospecting just relics that may have historical value. It has to be done or overseen by a recognized archaeologist to do the finding, recovery and to determine if it is of archaeological value. John Doe Public is breaking Federal Law by even looking for "Relics" on federally controlled public land. Coins are OK to hunt if they are less than 50 years old. If they are older than that by removing them from where they have been laying breaks Federal Law.

The basis for this is the American Antiquities Act of 1906, Federal Law: 16 USC 431-433. It has been pretty much forgotten until the Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979, Federal Law: 16 U.S.C. 470aa-mm. The 1979 Act has been amended 4 times since. They are easy to look up with Google. They are much more difficult to understand because of course they are in two strange languages, Politicalese and Legalese.

In the last few years archaeologists, archaeological societies and universities have really been pushing to have all of these Federal Laws enforced right down to the letter on individuals like Jake and us all just out there doing what we like to do. Jake said the BLM Ranger was young and aggressive, well he also probably had the Antiquities Laws in his training. The Ranger was doing his job and had the Laws to back him up. I really doubt complaining to the Supervisor went far. It made Jake a little bit happier about it and the Supervisor was probably happy to have Jake out of his face.

The following is from the Prescott National Forest web site. It is the current basic guide line for National Forests, BLM and other federal public land controllers that don't have stricter rules.
Link to webpage: http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/prescott/recreation/propect.shtml

"For the Use of Metal Detectors on the National Forest
The allowable use of metal detectors on National Forest system lands takes a number of different forms. Detectors are used in searching for treasure trove, locating historical and pre historical artifacts and features, prospecting for minerals, and searching for recent coins and lost metal objects. Of these four types of uses for metal detectors, the first three are covered by existing regulations that require special authorization, i.e. special use permits, notice of intent, or operating plan.

The search for treasure trove, which is defined as money, un mounted gems, or precious metals in the form of coin, plate, or bullion that has been deliberately hidden with the intention of recovering it later, is an activity which is regulated by the Forest Service. Searching for treasure trove has the potential of causing considerable disturbance and damage to resources and thus requires a Special Use Permit from the Forest Service. Methods utilized in searching for treasure trove must be specified in the permits issued. Permits may not be granted in each and every case, but applications will be reviewed with attention being paid to the justification given and guarantees for the restoration of any damage that might occur to other resources. The use of metal detectors in searching for treasure trove is permissible when under this type of permit, but must be kept within the conditions of the permit.

The use of a metal detector to locate objects of historic or archaeological value is permissible subject to the provisions of the Antiquities Act of 1906, the Archaeological Resources Preservation Act 1979, and the Secretary of Agriculture's regulations. Such use requires a Special Use Permit covering the exploration, excavation. appropriation, or removal of historic and archaeological materials and information. Such permits are available for legitimate historical and pre historical research activities by qualified individuals. Unauthorized use of metal detectors in the search for and collection of historic and archaeological artifacts is a violation of existing regulations and statutes.

The use of a metal detector to locate mineral deposits such as gold, and silver on National Forest System lands is considered prospecting and is subject to the provisions of the General Mining Law of 1872.

Searching for coins of recent vintage (less than 50 years) and small objects having no historical value, as a recreational pursuit, using a hand-held metal detector, does not currently require a Special Use Permit as long as the use of the equipment is confined to areas which do no posses historic or prehistoric resources."

The 3rd paragraph above states the Federal Acts. The line about mineral deposits comes up short because it doesn't mention that Wilderness Areas are a no-no. It is probably going to get even more restrictive with more aggressive enforcement as time goes on. Some in archeology and universities are pushing for basically the same antiquity laws in states for private land. This adds more to the long list of restrictions to us on our own public land and it wouldn't be a great surprise if they got it put on our private land some day too.




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