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  1. Default Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Hi all, my name is Kelly and I am new to the site. I'm 36 from northern Utah and I have been fly fishing since that day in Boy Scouts when I picked up my dads fly rod with the automatic reel and began my life long obsession. As some of you may know, there is a stream access battle going on here in the sometimes fine state of Utah. Since the beginning I have been a strong supporter of stream access in this state. From Utah's beginning it has been said that the rivers and streams in Utah will always belong to the public. A lot of river miles have been taken away from me and my fellow Utah fly fishermen. Sometimes I find myself being a little philosophical. I often ask myself, "if I owned some property that had a few miles of blue ribbon trout stream running through it, would I allow everyone and anyone to come fish?" I think it's quite possible that I would have a problem with that. But as a non-property owning fly fisherman, I feel I have the right to fish the public waters and public fish that my tax dollars and license fees pay for, no matter who ownes the substrate beneath. Selfish, hypocritical..... maybe. I guess for now I will follow my belief that the waters should be public. Chances are i will never be faced with the decision to allow fishermen on my land.
    "Bait is for little fat kids"

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Its pretty easy. In most states the citizens own the land up to the mean high water mark (like an easement), and the stream bed is public property, beyond that its private property. So, in theory, if your feet are wet you should be good. At least from a moral perspective. The law on the other hand? Lord knows, it varies by state. But....as a former poli sci prof? I'm betting there are more fishermen than land owners. Common sense and simple justice (as in we're collectively paying for this stream so we should all get to enjoy it, not just the guy who bought property on the bank) should carry the day. Get organized, and good luck.

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  5. #3
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by utah kelly View Post
    Hi all, my name is Kelly and I am new to the site. I'm 36 from northern Utah and I have been fly fishing since that day in Boy Scouts when I picked up my dads fly rod with the automatic reel and began my life long obsession. As some of you may know, there is a stream access battle going on here in the sometimes fine state of Utah. Since the beginning I have been a strong supporter of stream access in this state. From Utah's beginning it has been said that the rivers and streams in Utah will always belong to the public. A lot of river miles have been taken away from me and my fellow Utah fly fishermen. Sometimes I find myself being a little philosophical. I often ask myself, "if I owned some property that had a few miles of blue ribbon trout stream running through it, would I allow everyone and anyone to come fish?" I think it's quite possible that I would have a problem with that. But as a non-property owning fly fisherman, I feel I have the right to fish the public waters and public fish that my tax dollars and license fees pay for, no matter who ownes the substrate beneath. Selfish, hypocritical..... maybe. I guess for now I will follow my belief that the waters should be public. Chances are i will never be faced with the decision to allow fishermen on my land.
    Kelly,

    What waters are you fishing in Utah ? to the Forum.

    Paul

    Nature, Cheaper than Therapy

    LIVE TODAY

  6. #4
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    I don't post my land.
    There no fishing on my property (never seen a trout in my brook larger than 4"), but people do hunt there
    The way I see it, signage is not going to keep anyone out and may even attract the curious.
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rip Tide View Post
    I don't post my land.
    There no fishing on my property (never seen a trout in my brook larger than 4"), but people do hunt there
    The way I see it, signage is not going to keep anyone out and may even attract the curious.
    That's a different ballgame. Walking across private property is a no go. Keeping your feet wet in a public river bed is something else. Two different animals. But thank you for helping out your fellow fly addicts, lord knows we need it.

  9. #6
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by fq13 View Post
    That's a different ballgame. Walking across private property is a no go. Keeping your feet wet in a public river bed is something else. Two different animals. But thank you for helping out your fellow fly addicts, lord knows we need it.
    We have accessibility issues too.
    A certain fresh-faced young country/pop superstar recently dropped 17.75 million on a local ocean front cottage where I fish. The legal right of way to the beach goes through her land. Let's see how long that lasts

    Actually sign on her property.

    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

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  11. #7
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by fq13 View Post
    Its pretty easy. In most states the citizens own the land up to the mean high water mark (like an easement), and the stream bed is public property, beyond that its private property. So, in theory, if your feet are wet you should be good. At least from a moral perspective. The law on the other hand? Lord knows, it varies by state. But....as a former poli sci prof? I'm betting there are more fishermen than land owners. Common sense and simple justice (as in we're collectively paying for this stream so we should all get to enjoy it, not just the guy who bought property on the bank) should carry the day. Get organized, and good luck.
    Not so in Utah. Legislation has decreed that the property owners own the stream bed thus they can keep you from fishing that water high water line or not. Now, in Idaho, where I live, what you say is true and reasonable access is granted as long as you stay within the high water line.

    This has been a long, dirty battle in Utah but the fishing community is organized with the Utah Stream Access Coalition fighting hard in this matter. Here is their website Utah Stream Access Coalition

    There is no common sense in this matter from the land owners...

    Kelly.
    I fish, therefore I am - but I gotta go to work first..."piscari ergo sum"

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  13. #8

    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Quote Originally Posted by kglissmeyer1 View Post

    There is no common sense in this matter from the land owners...

    This is a capitalistic country! The guys with the money can kick you off his private land..... and I'm sure he will!

    Sharing is a socialist or commie thing (everybody hates the pinko commies, don't you?)! Same thing with your income or your health bennies? No unions here, and no government paid healthcare for everybody! The few with big bucks will get the good health care and they will also live in nice houses.

    The people with money in this "free enterprise" system will catch a lot of trout, not you! ..... you have to work all the time and try to sneak on his property when he's not looking! LOL Even if you could stay in the water all the time! .... is that really fun fishing? Think of the long walk back upstream on those slippery rocks!

  14. #9
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Water and the land beneath it belong to everyone and access to it should always be provided to it. The high water mark rule works here and if it doesn't in your area, band together and pressure your elected officials to change it or change them. Big business and money always seen to be heard first. If they allow water rights to be sold to a few then they (government) should also provide sufficient public water for all of the tax paying fishermen (and ladies).
    "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken" - Oscar Wilde

  15. #10
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    Default Re: Am I a hypocrite, a little selfish maybe?

    Fortunately for me, NH is very different.

    The general rule is, unless it's posted, you can use private land for fishing, hunting and other recreational activities.

    In exchange for access, you usually (there are few exceptions) can't sue a landowner for something that happens to you while you're on his land.

    It's a pretty fair exchange in my opinion.
    Today is always the first day of the rest of your life.
    Use it wisely.

    Paul

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