trespassers on my land

ABSeptember 12, 2000

OK, me again. I searched the forums and this was as close as I could get to this problem. I own a 12 acre parcel of land next to thousands of acres of state land. There are soooo many *#@* snowmobilers on my land. It is posted, and not one of them has EVER, EVER asked permission, or introduced themselves to us since we moved in. We checked and there is NO right of way through our land. We have called the police who say "By the time we get there they will be gone" which they are, but then come back. This is a disaster waiting to happen. There are tree seedlings, streams and ruts on the land that make walking hazardous, let alone snowmobiling over the top of these things hidden under the snow. We put chains up across the access points; they go around them. We parked cars across the accesses; they go around. We put signs and objects in the trail; they run over them or move them. The only time they do not trespass is if we are standing there watching them, so obviously they know they are not welcome. I emailed the local snowmobile club and they never replied. I contacted the State Park people and they said there's nothing they can do about private land concerns. They have the right to go along the edge of the road but NOT in my yard. But they do, they go about 6 inches from the cars and disrupt my rabbits who live in the barn, they whoop and holler when they do it like they are King Kong or something. Not only that but I think these guys are drinking because I see snowmobiles parked at the bar down the road. It is a very rural area, and I might not mind if they ever ONCE asked permission!! I have always lived in the sticks but this is ridiculous! Didn't their parents teach them to respect others?? Just venting but any suggestions would help--serious or not!

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Sounds like a fence might be the only answer. Or plant some evergreens and stake them well. In a few years they will grow into a hedge and act like a fence.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2000 at 10:05PM
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First, for your own liability's sake, remove the chains-I know of a few cowboy snowmbilers who've sustained serious
neck injuries...and the way things are today, you, unfortunately would probably be the one to be sued for their stupidity. Secondly, I'd get myself to a good attorney asap;if you don't get answers there, see another, and another until you find one who can put a stop to this madness. Also, having worked in law enforcement communications here in the north country,I know that something can be a pain in the _ss and keep calling every single time they show up. After a while, the dept. will get more tired of hearing from you than making excuses and they will take action. All they have to do is catch and prosecute one of them (and drunken snowmobiling is illegal in some states);the word will get out to the rest of the group and they might decide not to follow suit. If constant complaining fails, go in to speak with the police chief himself. If you get the same lame excuse from him, tell him you will be bringing the problem to your town council (i.e., his "bosses"). Contrary to what a lot of
chiefs like to think,they are not the end of the line and they have superiors to answer to, namely the people who hired him for the job. Good luck!

    Bookmark   September 14, 2000 at 12:14AM
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Thanks for the input, I did talk to my lawyer about the liability issues. He said to make a police report for later evidence. I tried but they would not take it. It is a double bind. If I put chains up they get hurt on the chains. If I take them down they go on the land and get hurt on the seedlings, fall in the stream and flip over in the ruts. I am reluctant to fence the whole property because it takes away the legitimate access that we like to have to the state lands above. I too am in the law enforcement field and I have researched the legal issues. I am aware that the sheriffs are not doing their job properly, but part of the problem (aside from their lack of response) is that they only have three patrol cars and can never get here in time. This is a bit of a lawless town, I am afraid. Don't get me wrong, I love it here. We chose to live here because of the remoteness and wild lands. I also understand both sides of law enforcement--the law enforcers and the general public. I am just frustrated is all. The town council has no authority over the county sheriff or state police--we don't have a local police or constable here, and unfortunately my own legal authority only extends to my probationers. I suppose I could turn them in to their own PO for violating laws and hence probation, but I have to see their faces to know who they are!! I may write the county a letter while it is still summer, asking them while they are not in the middle of snowmobile season (which is pretty long I am sure you know) and also will probably write to the paper here. But thanks for the input. Like i said I am mostly just venting.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2000 at 12:32PM
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AB, I know how you feel. We bought this 25 acre property several years ago and are still considered the new guys. Our property is almost all open field. (It is all posted, don't want people hunting here, we are a sanctuary.) The nieighbors on the other side of the woods ride their horse through the field, then she runs through the fields with her dog each day. I truly don't mind that it is done, but doesn't common decency say that you should at least ask? They have never come up to introduce themselves to us in the 5+ years we have been here. They do allow their dogs and cat to roam, I have chased them more times than I can count. The dogs have killed many of the wild critters, the cat has killed the birds at the feeder. I finally started shooting buckshot at the cat, got her one day and voila they called! I was told that their families had lived in this area forever and had even owned our property at one time! They were then asked if they wished to pay my taxes and mortgage. They weren't receptive to that idea. We are the most highly assessed property in the township, so I was quited sure they wouldn't want my tax bill.

I don't know what has happened to people, they don't seem to respect other's property. When a couple of new folks moved in up the road they asked if they could drive their ATV through our field, of course we said there was not a problem with that. And I think that is the only way to be, respectful of another's property.

Good Luck AB, I know how you feel.


    Bookmark   September 16, 2000 at 10:58AM
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thank you Lynn, I know how you feel. We were "told" by neighbors that they have "always" gone through this field, and they think they have a right-of-way, which they do not (believe me, we talked to our lawyer). I get so frustrated just because if one of them ever even came to say hi they would be welcome to use the land. But they don't. I guess it is the facts that those who respect private property will ask you, and those who don't, it won't matter what you do, what obstacles you put up, they just don't care. Of those who have asked we have gotten mutal permission to use their land, which is great. I'm just waiting to be sued when some dingbat hits a seedling or flips over in the creek. THAT is why I call the police, because I want evidence that I attempted to stop them.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2000 at 9:13PM
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AB--that is just exactly why we posted the no trespassing/posted signs on our property. Each state may have different laws, but our atty. had told us to makesure we did this to prevent being sued.


    Bookmark   September 19, 2000 at 1:27PM
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Our land is posted thoroughly. I took a picture of some of the posted signs so I can then take a picture after the bozos run over them. My lawyer says that posting should be done but will not necessarily prevent someone from suing you and taking up a lot of your time and money. I also added signs that specifically said "No snowmobiles, No 4-wheelers" but I doubt my neighbors can even read. We have the largest open field in the neighborhood, in fact so open that we can't post everywhere because there's nothing to put a sign on. I think are just jealous because our pick up truck is nicer than theirs, har har. (and that doesn't take much)

    Bookmark   September 20, 2000 at 12:36PM
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Mark Dahle

I have had the same problem that you have had, with snowmobilers that is. i only have an acre, so not as much area, but they go on my lawn.

You sound like you just want to catch them in the act. this solution might work for you and not make you liable. An avid snowmobiler told me when i was having my problem that if you want to catch them in the act try this. he said that many snowmobilers ride in the same tracks. And, once a track is there, it's like a green light to any snowmobiler. Sounds like maybe your problem is from the same group of people. Anyway, here it is. he said to go buy some white nylon rope (not real thick, but decent thickness). cut long strips and lay them parallel inside the tracks. When they go over the tracks with the string, it gets all tangled in their snowmobile track and stops them instantly. It's a mess he said to get out of the track. Once that happens you have them on your property long enough to get the police out there. I figure once you catch a couple the rest won't come near your property. Hope this works for you. The bad thing is that snowmobiling is actually fun. it's just a small few law breakers that make it a problem for the ones you probably wouldn't mind having utilize your area. Good Luck!

    Bookmark   September 27, 2000 at 5:34PM
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Thanks Mark, it IS the same bunch of people over and over, a rather large group unfortunately, comprised of the entire neighborhood (or so it seems). The rope could be a good idea if it works. Oops, did I leave that rope there? Sorry. As long as they won't get hurt and sue me. I agree that snowmobiling can be fun, as well as mountain biking, 4-wheeling, jet skiing etc. As long as you are respectful of your neighbors and aren't destroying their land. I found out that our state DEC has free "rules" signs for posting as well, that say things like "stay on marked trails", "misuse will result in no use", etc and include messages about respecting private property. We have tried to go up in the fields to catch them, and when they see us they turn around. But at 11 at night in January when they are all drunk up there, NO WAY am I going out after them. Thanks for the advice.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2000 at 11:25AM
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My husband and I can relate to your dilemma. We have a similar problem with deer hunters on our farm/woods. One day my husband caught a guy in his tree stand. The guy asked him, "do you know Jim Davis?" he said "I am Jim Davis, and you're in my tree stand!" He reported him to the game warden who could have fined the man big time but he came to our house later boo-hooing and begging us to drop the charges. We did. One other guy put up a new tree stand on our farm, my husband found it and brought it home. When the guy came to hunt, boy was he surprised! We did give it back to him. If you have an open field, everyone assumes they have the right to hunt, ride horses, ride 4 wheelers, jog, walk or do anything else they please. It makes you mad.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2000 at 11:30PM
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I have the same problem at my mountain cabin. It is on the edge of a river. Folks come and park in front of my cabin and go to the river to swim (often in the buff) and some want to camp. There are posted signs on a zillion trees. I have seen folks back up their trucks so they could stand in the bed and tear down the signs. Calls to the local police go unheeded. If you tell them to leave, they threaten to come back and burn your house down. Yet, as you day, if someone gets hurt on your property, they can sue you. Keep the signs up and plant natural vegetation barriers is our only hope.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2000 at 3:32AM
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My parents have 1200 acres, try keeping people off that. It is extremely hard and almost cannot be done. It's posted every 50 yards with no hunting/tresspassing. The only thing I can suggest is to get some buffalo or bulls after a fence is built. Some people have no respect. My parents moved into the country to get away from the city and people, and to protect the wildlife. It's a very sad heartbreaking issue. Wish you luck!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2000 at 4:38PM
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Is there any way you can take pictures or videotape them, close enough to be able to identify the snowmobiles in the pictures, or even the people? Unless it's at night, this might be the way to 'catch' them. Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2000 at 1:41PM
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Bill D.

how about a battery operated video camera with a motion sensor or noise activated system to turn it on and off. I am thinking of the motion sensor flood lights. my Ace hardware had something battery opperated to turn on sprinklers when it saw motion to scare away cats and dogs. I believe it was called a scarecrow. A nice pond with thin ice should stop most such people. If it is only a foot or two deep they motor will stop and the person will walk away. cold and wet.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2000 at 11:31PM
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thanks for the funny ideas. A lot of times it is at night so it would be hard to videotape. I think I might chop down some scrubby trees and leave the brush across the trail. Motion sensor lights might work then maybe they will think I am coming after them. My parents also have 18 acres of land and they have the same problem. They go chasing after them every time but it never works. Maybe attack geese?? I still like the white rope idea, I would give anything to see them stuck in my yard while the police show up. And if I thought I wouldn't get sued, I'd set it all up so they land right in the creek. We have already had snow here and I can see all the neighbors tuning up their snowmobiles.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2000 at 12:18PM
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AB: I'm just amazed reading all the posts on this site. My husband and I live in the Washington, D.C. metro area and frequently muse about moving to a less conjested area (traffic and people) where our young son can grow up in a more "natural setting." But after reading these posts, I don't think I could deal. Both my husband and I are definately "follow the rules" types, much to the amusement and harrasement of some of our friends, who think that "if it's there, then it's open season and free for all." They do have other redeeming qualities, thus the friendship (I knew you would ask!). I'm a firm believer that "respect" of others, property, etc. is learned at home (although a few kids/people just never learn, despite the best of intentions.) One thought...if you do use the white rope (or some other method of deterance) and someone (hopefully NOT) is injured, you might want to think about what you post on the internet. In this litigious society, everyone is cut-throat and uses whatever means possible to prove a point. Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2000 at 11:04AM
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BS Workman

Re: Trespassing on private property, lands. I believe that
we need more responsible parents, children all understanding
the laws better, if it isn't yours and you do not own it, then do not bother those who own property and have paid for it and paid the taxes and maintain the insurance. Society has become lawless, no respect for others. We are seeing this everywhere, at home, on our own lands, and in our schools. No Respect or values in remembering that you do not
break laws. If one does, be ready to suffer the penalties of the law of the land.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2000 at 8:15AM
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I am also amazed at these posts. Where I come from (central Texas) I and everyone else I know, were raised to understand the meaning of private property, fenced or not. We are on a 1600 ac hunting lease along with several other familys that we know. We would never hunt, ride our 4 wheelers or even step a foot on the adjacent propertys, it's just common sense and courtsey.

We had a game warden knock on our door one night, he wanted to use our phone to call our next door neighbor and let him know he was coming to arrest him and just wanted to warn him without upsetting his wife and children to much. Seems he had been seen crossing a barbed wire fence on private property to go fishing, without the owners permission. Thats just the way it is around here.

I can't understand why you folks can't get law enforcement officials to help you out. Good luck and hope everything works out OK for you.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2000 at 9:40AM
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Bill D.

A ha ha is a type of fence that used to be built on great estates in Britian to keep livestock corraled and the view clear. The idea is a fairly narrow trench with safe sloping sides, similar to a irrigation canel in end view, is dug along the fence line as deep as the fence must be tall. Then the fence is built in the bottom of the trench but it's top is below ground level and can not be seen from the house. This way the land is fenced but the view is preserved. of course a bridge must be placed at crossing points for vechiles.
Bill D.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2000 at 11:54PM
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We were talking about this type of thing just this past week with some friends. I think that part of the problem is that so many times (I know this is our situation) the property owner is the new guy in the area, and that the trespassers have lived there forever, have never had to ask permission and don't realize they are upsetting the new owners, I don't think they necessarily mean to be, but they are inconsiderate. I know this is the attitude of our neighbors....our families have lived here for years.....and in some cases may have owned the property at one time. So I don't think they even give it a second thought, they always rode the snow mobiles, or the horses or hunted there so they simply continue to do so. Now don't misunderstand, I do not think this makes it okay, I am simply trying to think of why they do it. And please don't misunderstand my next some cases this may be a different type of thought process. Living in a suburban setting we get used to asking permission, introducing ourselves, etc. Being rural folks, they just don't seem to be aquainted with some of the more 'civil' manners we adhere to, they lead a simpler life. This became somewhat evident to us when we moved to the country.


    Bookmark   October 23, 2000 at 10:47AM
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Marilyn C--Texas coast

I can relate to all the above---but here it isn't snow
mobiles, but 4 wheel drive trucks and people going "muddin'", as they call it. Saw a girl working at a
convience store, yawning, and she said, "Oh, excuse me--I
was up until 4 a.m. this morning, muddin'." I said, "Oh,
so you are one of the people who delight in tearing up
other people's property?" She hesitated, and said, "Oh,
we had permission." I said, "yeah, right---that's why you
do it at 4 a.m."

I also have acreage that at one time was all the locals
hunting and fishing property. I have had constant trouble
and heartbreak from people who allow their dogs to run
wildlife on my land. The people around here would pay
$1500 for a coon dog, but wouldn't pay 10 cents for land
to run them on. They live on an acre, and let the dogs
run on other people's land. As much as I hate to, I have
had to shoot several. I feed sunflower seeds to the
cardinals and titmice, table scraps to the crows and
coon dogs to the vultures. Before I ire any dog lovers,
let me say that these dogs drowned a pet pig in the bayou,
have run my horses, killed a cat, and killed a mother
raccoon and her babies that nested in my yard. I called
animal control---the dogs were picked up and held for
rabies observation. The owners never got the dogs back---
they bought 4 new dogs. I'm waiting on them. The shotgun
is by the door.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2000 at 4:13PM
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Marilyn, I can't fault your actions, if these dogs are taught to do this type of destruction there is no unteaching it at this point. Unfortunately it is the owners who need training (or shooting--LOL). We also have a lot of wildlife living and visiting our property, and have had to threaten to take appropriate action with some animals that run through our property. Last night a young may called our home and asked for permission to hunt on our property this weekend (turkey & small game), of course the anwer was no with an explanation that this would not be hunting...we feed all the animals, but I'm encouraged....he asked.


    Bookmark   October 26, 2000 at 12:26PM
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I love to target practice. Big bore black powder.
Try building a target backstop out of old railroad cross ties on the back side of the property.
Just schedule your bench rest target practicing the days the snowmobilers or 4x4 cowboys show up.
It's amazing how the sound of a big bore rifle discharging downrange convinces people to seek somewhere else to play.
thanks for listening

    Bookmark   November 2, 2000 at 3:29PM
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thanks for the advice, all. A few weeks ago we caught one kid red handed on his 4-wheeler, then jumped in our car and drive to the other end of the trail where he would come out. When we saw him we told him to stay off our land. He did--for two whole days. Then he came back. SO I put up a sign that said "stay on trail or it will be closed". He ignored it. So we put up a fence. Someone--we assume him, tho we did not see him do it--broke off all the STEEL fence posts at the ground and then ran over then fence, posted signs and all. THEN the police decided they would take a report. We are waiting for them to get back to us (yeah right) whether they were able to locate the guy and question him. We didn't know his name but roughly where he lives and we can ID him and the 4-wheeler, which is bright yellow.

Anyway, re: the "ha ha" pit or whatever, there is already a stream there similar to what you had described, unfortunately fences mean nothing to them and putting a bridge for US to cross over it also means he will go over it.

Interesting point about the new people, we are the newest people there, true. However the previous owners had the same problem, till finally after about 10 years the bozos learned that if they'd just stay on the trail no one would care. I think when we bought the place they just thought they could change the rules.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2000 at 3:27PM
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Kathy Pomeroy

I'm afraid I'd be in court all the time, for taking potshots at these hilljacks. I can't believe the b@lls these people have!!!!
Good luck to you. Remember, it IS your property.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2000 at 10:20AM
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Ya know sounds like they really like this land. Makes me think... humm wonder if the land was fenced and you started charging admission on the hours YOU wanted them to use it.....making people pay usually puts an end to the action because you are allowing the activity but only on your rules..Had a pond and had neihbors climbing the fence.when we started opening the pond and charging then it just was no fun anymore... makes one wonder....

    Bookmark   November 19, 2000 at 9:19AM
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Just found this website. Yeehaa, I'm NOT the only one who goes "irate" when some of those off-roaders go through my property. Yes, I'm the new kid on the block, whose 7 acre lakefront property backs against national forest, and just my luck a perfect off-road trail runs through it. Well, I posted the signs, I barricaded the road, but unfortunately the " off roaders" ran over the sign and moved the barricades! My wife was on the property at one time and these kids on their dirt bikes told her to get off the land because "it's private property" (what nerve!). I guess reading from all of your input, this problem will never stop! I am considering digging a "ha ha" fence - fill it with water - add a couple of sharks - then it will really be a "ha ha" fence - LOL! (my co-worker suggested this idea) -- Anyway, I'll try some of the suggestions on this site. It's incredible - you try to move out into the country/mountains to get away from traffic,gangs, people, rudeness, & drive-by-shooting (we live in So.Calif) but you end up with the same situation just different settings. Instead of traffic you got off-roaders and snowmobilers -- instead of gangs you got hillbillies -- instead of rude people you got more rude, uneducated hillbillies -- instead of drive by shootings you're resorting to shooting at drive bys on your land!! HA HA HA! Just had to get this off my chest!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2001 at 3:12AM
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I am glad, but frustrated to learn that my husband and I are not alone on this topic. We purchased 27 acres of woods with a stream, pond, wetlands, hills.. absolutely beautiful. We are in the process of builing on it, but want it to remain mostly a nature sanctuary. Last fall we were constantly battling hunters, and yes we called the police although there was little they could do since they would always be gone before they arrived.. unfortunately we failed to stop the killing of a 12 point buck, which the hunters must have lost track of, or just didnt care. Everyday people go through our property. Many just let their dogs roam. Also.. they all poach our morels! Seriously though, the hunting has to stop. We just got electricity to the property, so we are going to install cameras. Unfortunately everyone in the area considers it their "park", so we have a long battle ahead of us.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2001 at 6:03PM
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They may not take it seriously now and realize you are bluffing, but when I first got my 6 wooded acres I agonized on how to stop people from wandering around my place. I finally decided to post "Caution-Mean Bull" signs. Figured tresspassers would worry more about what a bull would do since, unlike a person, it would attack rather than worry about consequences. Whether the sign did the trick or I have just been lucky, to my knowledge I have never had anyone on my property.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2001 at 8:30PM
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Lori in MN

My husband has the same problem. He leases hunting land (sorry to all those who ae against it)and it is posted all over with no trespassing, no hunting, no horses, no dogs, no ATVs,this means you signs. The morons park their vehicles in front of the signs!!! When we confronted the parents of some girls who were in the woods during hunting season (with BROWN pony tails and no blaze orange clothing as the hunting regulations call for), they could not understand why their daughters were in danger! People seem to feel that the rules do not apply to them.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2001 at 11:29AM
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Subj: The ATV Trespass Problem
From: Mark Rock Ferran BSEE scl (RPI '92) JD mcl
You folks are not alone in suffering trespass by ATVs.
This essay collects articles about the ATV Trespass problem occurring in NY and throughout the US and Canada, and about the way some landowners are fighting back (tooth and nail) against ATV trespassers. Also included is a discussion of the New York statutes that purport to authorize citizens to forcibly stop and to perform citizen's arrests of ATV trespassers in NY. The author is a NY Forest Landowner who manages 600 acres of forested private family land in Rensselaer County, NY. I recommend that if interested you save, and print copies of the linked articles in case they cease to be maintained online. Your comments and criticisms are welcome. Feel free to forward as fair use.
In 1988, a Time Magazine article (excerpted below) titled "Invaders on The Black River" described how "roaring ATVs are shattering the peace" and introduced America to a lawless American subculture whose members are unified by the presumption that by buying (or stealing) a certain type of "vehicle", they are entitled to intrude upon any and "all terrain":
"Villages on Missouri's Black River like Lesterville and Centerville used to be oases of tranquillity, the destination of weekend canoeists, tube floaters and fishermen. No longer. All too often the solitude of the Ozarks wilderness is shattered these days by the whine and rumble of powerful engines. ... Locals call it "the Invasion." The ... four-wheel vehicles, running up and down the riverbed with abandon. ... For the ATV crowd, it was all just good fun. But for conservationists and others interested in keeping the river pristine, the Invasion is a nightmare ... and the law has failed to halt the nightmare. "These things destroy the ecology of the river," says Larry Koeler, a Centerville lawyer, of the ATVs. ... Horror stories abound. Former River Guide Eric Dunn recalls ... "a young boy tried to run down me and my wife and son." ... County Sheriff Gary Barton ... and his two deputies can hardly make a dent in the rampant ATV challenge. On Memorial Day weekend they wrote scores of tickets to ATV riders who trespassed on private property or were intoxicated. ... The sheriff, who owns three ATVs himself, takes no chances. "I don't equip my patrol car with a regular rifle," he says. "I have an M-16. I leave it in the patrol car where you can see it. You have to make a show of force." Although the state conservation commission sent five agents into Reynolds County to help Barton out, it was not enough of a show to make much difference. "The ATVs still go anywhere they want." ... Sierra Club Director Hattoy charges that the ATVs permanently scar the land, kill wildlife and destroy vegetation, as well as cause noise, safety and pollution problems. Says he: "We recognize their right to use public lands, but no one has the right to chase jackrabbits...

    Bookmark   April 2, 2002 at 1:37PM
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Here are just some comments through out in no particular order.

I was an avid ATVer for many years.
I only drove my ATV on authorized public land.
The places I used to ride closed.
Thought I could afford to purchase some land to ride, I elected not too (other priorities).
I ended up selling my ATV and loosing $2500 in the process.

Though local and government agencies are sworn to provide equal access when it come to public land they do not.
In my state you have to pay sales tax and registration fees on ATVs
5% of $6000.00 + dollars is a lot of money to spend and then not have any place to ride.
Where does the money generated from this money go?
ATV sales are up 20% a year in the last few years
Public access land closures are rising.
See the issue?

That is it for nowÂ

    Bookmark   April 4, 2002 at 10:55AM
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you might want to post some signs, saying this is a private target range, and put up some used targets on trees throughout your property, leave a few spent shells here and there, i would think twice about riding on a target range.also some old tennis nets under the snow, make a tangled up mess in a snowmobile, paint the nets white and leave them on the surface.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2002 at 8:28PM
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sfowler ... how does that change the difference between public land and private land? It does not! I suspect the average landowner will loose more (in maintenance, fence repair, lost crops, dead livestock, personal time since time is money and legal fees) than the amount you lost when you sold your ATV.

If the place that allowed you to ride was closed there must be a reason. Your behavior may have nothing to do with it, but private land is private and public land is managed to maintain it in decent condition and it is the governing agencies decision. There is no guarantee of anything.

There is no issue.

What potent blood hath modest May. - Ralph W. Emerson

    Bookmark   May 7, 2002 at 9:03PM
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I have a hunter that has trespaaed on my farm for two years. I lease my farm to hunters and they tell me he is on my farm all the time. I found his deer stand in my tree and I shot it down. And I filed charges against him for trespassing with the intend to hunt. The police charged me with criminal mischief, damage to property. On my own farm. know I have to hire a attorney to defend myself.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2006 at 1:39PM
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Copied .....Posted by: sfowler (My Page) on Thu, Apr 4, 02 at 10:55

Here are just some comments through out in no particular order.
I was an avid ATVer for many years.
I only drove my ATV on authorized public land.
The places I used to ride closed.
Thought I could afford to purchase some land to ride, I elected not too (other priorities).
I ended up selling my ATV and loosing $2500 in the process.

Earthworm .....Excuse me while I retrieve my "crying towel".

sfowler......Though local and government agencies are sworn to provide equal access when it come to public land they do not.

Define "equal access".
IMO, I do not see why they should - these lands must be saved and protected !
In my state you have to pay sales tax and registration fees on ATVs
5% of $6000.00 + dollars is a lot of money to spend and then not have any place to ride.
Where does the money generated from this money go?
ATV sales are up 20% a year in the last few years
Public access land closures are rising.
See the issue?

That is it for nowÂ

E-worm ..... The ATV is usually a luxury item; NOT a necessity, nor an economy vehicle .
IMO, NO ATV, NO SUV, NO trail bike should be allowed on public game lands.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2006 at 12:59PM
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Maybe you could try clearing a nice trail through the back of your property for the snowmobiles and any one else that happened by. Put up some nice please stay in trail sings and see how much more respect you get from the locals. Maybe even throw up a pass at your own risk sing to.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2006 at 5:53PM
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I am officially staying in the suburbs forever.

Although the thought of moving to the country always crosses my mind, I could not deal with the type of hassles and mayhem you guys are dealing with. Dead animals, tresspassers, liabilities, destruction of property??? Yikes!

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 11:56AM
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PLAY DIRTY String a rope about chest high to knock them off their mobiles, stand behind A snow blind and pelt them with rocks ,shine a laser sight on them ,maybe set up targets in your back lot that happen to be in their direction when you target practice," i had a neighbor that kept driving through my yard until i burried a board with nails sticking out of it" after that i never had annother problem ...

    Bookmark   March 19, 2006 at 10:08PM
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Best POSTED sign I ever saw was:

Survivors will be prosecuted


    Bookmark   March 19, 2006 at 10:37PM
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I like that one. Keep the shotgun loaded.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2006 at 9:48AM
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Why not unroll a large roll of barbed wire, onto the trails they use? sure would be tough to get out of the tracks!
Or, you could dump all your broken glass on their trails! on your propertyy of course. anybody ask, tell them it must have been dumped there by a previous owner!
i caught 2 young punks riding thru my back lot one day. got them stopped-the ball bat looked menacing! With the bat thru the front wheel, i managed to influence them to stay off my property, and to never come back! I also told them my son wanted a trail bike, and theirs would fit the bill nicely! They said they had permission to ride there!! Such nerve!! I asked them who gave permission--they said the guy who lived there! ME!!, then they said his son had said o.k. to ride there!! What BS!! Turned out that the kid next door gave the ok! Well, he got told not to ride on my property, and if he did--replacing spokes in his wheel might make him see the light! Had no more trouble after that!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2006 at 7:14PM
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You can plant native tall prairie grasses and when mature in about 3 yrs there is no way someone can get through this stuff even in the winter and with a snowmobile.

Although this does not apply to snowmobiles, we did have a problem with trespassing at our last house. Several stategically placed bee hives and we never had another problem with anyone on our property.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 3:54PM
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Wow. I'd add to the harrassment mix, a motion sensored loudspeaker big voice. When triped by motion, the voice shouts the tresspassing message. After a few weeks of no improvement you could change the message to something a bit more salty. Should ruin their experience a little.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2006 at 2:26PM
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Thought I could afford to purchase some land to ride, I elected not too (other priorities).
I ended up selling my ATV and loosing $2500 in the process.

What an absurdity. If you can't afford a hobby, pick another one instead of asking tax payers to support it. I'd recommend something without noise and air pollution. Your neighbors will love you for it.

Idea for the OP:
Post a note in town, offering free Christmas tree pickup after Christmas (no tinsel or decorations). Pile up the trees at the points where the snow mobiles enter to create a cheap, environmentally friendly barrier which is a pain to remove. Plant new evergreens behind this barrier, as some suggested. By the time the christmas trees are degraded, the new barrier may be dense enough.

Write a letter to the editor of the local paper, as a sort of public announcement. List the hazards that are present on your property to give people official notice. Make up a few good ones while you're at it (i.e. rifle range on site :) No idea if this will keep you from being sued, but it's another piece of paper to have on hand if things end up in court or as an insurance claim.

I like the idea of charging admissions but then you definitely have an insurance issue if one of those yahoos gets hurt.


    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 1:25PM
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I think that you people have to realize that all snowmobilers and ATVers are not all hellions bent on trespassing and destruction.

Just like all environmentalists are not pot smoking hippies with poor personal hygiene.

The people that you are talking about are the same jerks that are in and out of prison, constantly write bads checks, commit fraud, litter, smash mail boxes, etc, etc. It just so happens that in this case they are using snowmobiles to ruin a good thing for everybody else.

I know that is extremely frustrating when people trespass and don't respect our property. But you have to realize that it is a very small percentage of people that act this way. You will be a lot better off if you learn not to make it so personal and try to come up with a rational solution.

The only known way to keep these ignorant people off of your property is with lethal force. This would solve a lot of the other problems we also have with these jerks. But it will never happen in this country.

A possible solution would be to try to work with local riders and clubs to develop an alternate trail around your property or to permit use of a trail through your property as far away as your home as possible. Believe it or not most people are riding are just trying to get from point A to point B the easiest way possible. I don't think to many people are going to go through the trouble of moving large barriers to ride somewhere when there is an alternate trail in the same area (most of these ignorant jerks are also pretty lazy).

There are many snowmobilers and atv riders that are responsible and incredibly appreciative of any area that they are legally allowed to ride. These are also the same people that would whoop the azz of anyone they seen destroying private property making off roading more difficult than it already is.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2007 at 1:02PM
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The problem with ATV's, snowmobiles, moto cross bikes and even mountain bikes is that the nature of their use promotes destruction of the environment. Also, hunters, fishers and other recreational users can be destructive as well.

It is a fundamental disrespect to those who keep the land open, pristine and available by paying their taxes and protecting it, to not even acknowledge their hard work and effort with even a cursory, "Do you mind if we...?"

Also, land is a valuable assset that unfortunately is drying up all over the world, figuratively and literally. We need to learn to respect what we have, cherish it and take care of it as a community as well as private citizens.

Crashing through the woods at top speed, spilling pollutants, disrupting wildlife habitats, water run offs, plant life and natural land formations only further contributes to our own demise.

When I owned ten acres of rural farm land in Michigan across from a small river, we had no problem with people enjoying the property as we did. As long as they a) let us know of their presence by asking first b) respected our privacy and space by staying clear of the house c) left the land as they found it. There was never anything more distressing than going out to fish at the river and finding beer cans, plastic containers, fast food wrappers and fishing hooks and line strewn about. Same with a nice walk in the woods to find a broken fifth, old shotgun casings and other debris.

Worse was dealing with washouts made by motorized vehicles barreling through the property on the same path over and over again.

And don't even get me started on the THanksgiving holiday hunters who would converge on our property with their weapons and camo gear like a surging gorilla army close enough to my house to kill either one of us if a bullet were let loose in the wrong direction!

For the one year we were there, there must have been a total of a hundred trespassers and only ONE person ever asked permission to recreate on the land. And it was posted by the way.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2007 at 11:44PM
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I also think that the litigious nature of the american system, prevents people with good natures to ever allow people to use their property with or without permission because of a distinct possibility of getting sued.

Even if trespassers do not bother you and they are not hurting anything, if they get hurt while on your property, they could sue you. Ridiculous.

We live on waterfront and had lots of problems with trespassers for the first 5 years. When the word in the neighorhood finally got out that we would shag people off our property if they were on there without asking, they stopped fishing there without our permission.

What is truly weird is that - we will let them fish there - if they ASKED. But almost NO ONE would introduce themselves and ask permission first. Although I always though it was stupid that they wanted to fish on our yard anyway because there is a public park next door. But Is it wrong to want to know who is using our property?

I can't even imagine dealing with hunters... I feel for you newengland builder!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2007 at 10:55AM
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No one said anything derogatory about all ATV/snowmobilers, but about the trespassers. Who are doing it without permission and leaving destruction behind.
And your response is:
....try to come up with a rational solution.

The only known way to keep these ignorant people off of your property is with lethal force.

Murdering people to prevent them from trespassing is not rational.

I live in a rural area on a farm and have some issues, but we are a tight community and look out for each other.

Personally, I think the OP should go up the road where the perpetrators are drinking and befriend them. Then you'll know who they are, what they ride and eventually shame them into leaving your property alone. Or make them understand the limitations you want imposed.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2007 at 4:31PM
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Since the OP wrote the post 6.5 years ago, I hope s/he has planted a nice screen of trees that is grown thick and high and keeps all of the machines off their land by now! LOL!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 9:20PM
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Put barbed wire up or rope? Yeah, if you want to get sued for manslaughter.

People can get decapitated if they run into something like that. That would not be wise.

Put up a ranch style fence, and get an attorney involved.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2007 at 7:20PM
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I have found the perfect way! This is a natural fence/border>>>>> Plant Black Berrys on rows! They spread fastThey grow HIGH with thorns, AND You can pick them and eat them............... Grapes make a great border let them go wild will very small grapes but the vines stop all quick.
And they are cheep.................

    Bookmark   February 27, 2008 at 8:08AM
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My mom used to live in the inner city on a large corner lot. Her problem was cars cutting the corner onto her property, usually on warm summer nights at a rate of speed that was unsafe. I thought she might be exaggerating until I experienced it myself.

So what happened? A cousin of mine who worked driving a city truck was working nearby excavating a large stone. My mom saw him in his truck and they stopped to talk for a few minutes. He said he was on his way to a nearby dump station to drop the one ton boulder. My mom asked him if he could just put it in the corner of her yard instead, so he did. During the next couple of weeks he excavaed at least six more boulders that she placed strategicly around her yard. It actually looked good! She doesn't live there anymore but she never had problems again with those crazy late night drivers!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 9:40PM
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My tracts of rural property are scattered. The problem of trespassers on one tract sort of solved itself. Fellow in that area wanted to lease the hunting rights. Decent, honest fellow, prefers to bow hunt. So I wrote a lease that permitted only him to harvest game in legally-prescribed season by any legal method. Forbade the cutting or killing of any vegetation or use of any motorized equipment on the property. Also granted to him the right to prosecute for trespassing except for me, my son-in-law and my son. He agreed and I leased to him for about 60% of the going rate. Got his surveillance of the property and got paid for it!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 8:22AM
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I live on 5 acres, backup to a wildlife pond and have neighbors with even more acreage. I have not experienced any trespassing in the 15 years I've lived here. The little bit of garbage that I do pick up, I assume blew out of trash or recycle bins on windy days.

I posted one or two posts above about my mom and her inner-city neighborhood. The few people that I know that live in the inner city have some serious trespassing issues. They have had statues stolen out of their gardens, a threat tacked to an outside deck and one of them even had her purse stolen right off her kitchen table (which you can see from the sidewalk!)

On the other hand, my lake property isn't nearly as big as my home property. It is about a half acre and sits next to a public boat launch. The problem there is many fishermen bring their dogs. There is a porta potty at the access. When the fishermen stop by to use the facility, sometimes the dog will use my property to go #2. Of course the dog owner will just wait for the dog to finish his busiess, and off into the boat they go when he's done. I've never once seen one clean up after their dog. I don't have a dog so it's discouraging to go up to the cabin and have the yard littered with dog do-do. I have, on occaision, waited for the offending fisherman to leave and then scoop the do-do and put it in their vehicle. But only when I know for certain which vehicle it is and it has to be unlocked.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 1:50PM
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