A little over 35 years ago, Michigan faced a similar problem. As "clubs" with huge tracts of land began selling off fringe parcels of their properties, the new riverfront property holders didn't quite get the whole "fly-fishing" crowd and the "violating" of their
stretch of this or that river. The premise of high-water marks, "public waters equals public access" that had long been the norm in the state was put to the test in a number of court battles. Always, the accessibility issue was upheld by the legal system, and Michigan continues to have outstanding public access to its waterways.
That said, I'll qualify it a bit more with the fact that I could understand some of the frustrations of a few of the "new" landowners. Even some 30+ years ago, the "common sense/common courtesy rules" began to erode. A handful of anglers would march through somebody's property to access the river without taking the time to knock on the door and ask... just because they'd always
had permission from the old landowners. Then, to add insult to injury, "discards" such as tippet wrappers, cans and the like were left laying around. The "thoughtless few" cast a bad light on all us fly anglers, and the landowners struck back.
Fortunately-- and I'm talking more about my beloved AuSable River than anywhere else --angling groups like the local Trout Unlimited chapters, the Michigan Fly Fishing Club and the Anglers of the AuSable came to be-- the latter spear-headed and driven for years by the late Calvin R. "Rusty" Gates, Jr. --and changes started taking place. The groups were instrumental in changing the opinions held by some landowners through efforts like annual river clean-ups, bank stabilizations and the like. And, the general consensus that we had to "police" our own ranks astream became more of a reality, thereby smoothing out things in many areas and shrinking more than a few court dockets.
Group involvement and cooperative efforts between all parties are almost always positive things. At times, whether we like it or not, keeping the relationship channels open between anglers and landowners is akin to a good bit of PR
work. While the acess laws of the state are on our side, it never hurts to cultivate a little good will along the way...
Just my humble opinion...