Is it Legal
Posted 04 September 2011 - 10:18 AM
QUESTION: I have a Uncle who owns 10-acres of propert that's located inside of the Mojave National Preserve in California. He has asked me if I would be willing to come-up and nugget shoot his property to determine if his property contains any "GOLD' nuggets. So here is my QUESTION: Is Metal Detecting "Legal" on National Preserve Property - Can I legally Metail Detect on privately owned property that is within a National Perserve without out fear of having violated any State or Federal laws and risk having my MD confiscated.
Posted 04 September 2011 - 03:17 PM
Posted 04 September 2011 - 06:18 PM
Just remember a NPS Ranger is just that, which isnít very high on the food chain, maybe one or two steps above flipping hamburgers at your local McDonalds. They do not make law nor do they have the finial word or understanding of private land rights and neither do most of us. Have your uncle check his deed to see if he holds mineral rights to the land. And if he does hold the mineral rights, then pay the money and ask an attorney for an informed opinion on your special location. Its well worth the couple of hundred bucks to do it right the first time. No one here wants you to get into trouble with the government, but you should always protect your rights. Because if you donít the Feds will be more then happy to take them away.
Thatís my two cents.
Posted 04 September 2011 - 07:15 PM
Posted 04 September 2011 - 07:20 PM
The Mojave National Preserve has not produced a management plan yet so any ranger is blowing smoke with a blanket statement that no prospecting is allowed. Prospecting is specifically allowed in the wilderness portion per the Wilderness Act. The portions that are State Park and State public lands may or may not be prospectable, you will have to check individually there.
If your Uncle actually owns 10 acres it's private land and not included in the preserve. If your Uncle acquired mineral rights when he bought the property you can prospect and mine to your hearts content.
From the Mojave preserve General Management Plan.
not yet been established.
In addition to federal lands, the
National Park Service will work with private holders
of water rights to restore modified water sources to
natural conditions while still allowing for valid exist-
In Mojave, recognition of
valid existing mineral rights may affect our ability to
prevent all adverse effects, unless they are deemed
significant or funding is available to purchase the
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Posted 04 September 2011 - 08:17 PM
This article/letter covers more than just the BLM.
And regardless of what some here may say....never ignore what a NPS ranger tells you. They can, and will, cite you just as fast as a burger flipper can serve you a Big Mac. Just make sure YOU know the law before you start.
That being said, everyone on these forums has their own opinions as to how to "interpret" the law, so your absolute best bet is to just contact the NPS and get the answer. You can waste money on a lawyer if you want to, but we all know how much a lawyer really helps us miners with the extended ban on suction dredging here in Kali.
Posted 05 September 2011 - 09:03 AM
Posted 05 September 2011 - 12:27 PM
Posted 05 September 2011 - 08:17 PM
From experience, some of the most misinformed people in a situation like this
are BLM people, forestry people and law enforcement.
Many times they pretty much say whatever they want, especially if you will buy into it.
They all think they have slightly more authority than they actually have.
It is important to be clear about what you are saying and be very clear about what they are telling you.
This does not mean to flaunt the authority they do have,
exactly the opposite; manners works wonders sometimes.
Posted 08 September 2011 - 10:26 AM
Your responses were very, very helpful, informative and I will certainly take all of the information that you have provided regarding this matter under serious consideration as to prospect or not to prospect in this area.
After all, I really don't want Ranger Rick prying my dead cold hands off of my ML-5000 because he though he was in the right.
As the song goes - I fought the law but the law won.
Thanks Again Everone & May You Always Have Yellow In Your Pan :):)
The Kid - PEACE
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