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    Question: Hunting sandbars

    I was wondering if anyone with knowledge on this issue knows if you can legally hunt sand bars with out trespassing on private property? Im asking this because at some point i heard that landowners property could extend into the river. My second question is public boat ramps, when there is a sign posted no hunting how far does that extend and does it include nearby sand bars in that river. Specifically the Platte river.
    Last edited by riverrat86; 08-15-2019, 07:50 AM.
    Fishing is a dream so I dream often

    #2
    If you are hunting the river and both sides are private ground the land owners on both sides each own to a specified property line in the river. In my case we lease and hunt a mile long stretch of the Platte River. I pulled up the Merrick County GIS and it shows the property boundaries for each parcel of property along the river in Merrick County. Where we lease the property boundary fluctuates. Some of it goes to the middle of the river channel and some of it goes almost to the opposite bank. The land owners pay taxes on the river channel ground up to the property line. Sorry for the long winded explanation but in short if the land is private on both sides then you would need permission or you would be trespassing.
    SUCESS IS WHEN PREPARATION MEETS OPPORTUNITY!!

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    #3
    http://outdoornebraska.gov/watertrails/

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      #4
      Originally posted by rbhunter View Post
      If you are hunting the river and both sides are private ground the land owners on both sides each own to a specified property line in the river. In my case we lease and hunt a mile long stretch of the Platte River. I pulled up the Merrick County GIS and it shows the property boundaries for each parcel of property along the river in Merrick County. Where we lease the property boundary fluctuates. Some of it goes to the middle of the river channel and some of it goes almost to the opposite bank. The land owners pay taxes on the river channel ground up to the property line. Sorry for the long winded explanation but in short if the land is private on both sides then you would need permission or you would be trespassing.
      There are a large number of ways that defined line is identified in deeds, so as stated earlier if you count on it being the middle of the river you're likely wrong. Some refer to the center of the thread in a particular year, some go to where one bank or the other was at a particular time that some agreement was reached between neighbors, etc. Disputes over that line on particular parcels on the Platte have made it through all the state level courts and up into the federal system. But the short version of all this is that the sandbars belong to someone, and unless there is a tie to a public property they would need that landowners permission to hunt from. There are some stretches of river where folks tend to let certain activities such as canoeing, tubing, or even 4 wheeling go without permission up and down the river but if you try to set up to hunt on someone you're likely going to get called in for it.

      As for a specific boat ramp most are just small parcels that get you access to the water and don't have much more than that, but if there is a particular one you could call the local conservation officer for the details on that individual site.

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        #5


        all I could think of is this clip from Super Troopers. Also, when in doubt, I would call a C.O. and chat with them on whats legal and what's not.
        A man never stands so tall as when he stoops to help a child fish.....

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          #6
          If you have a public/private access in and out you can look into sneak boating. Although its frowned apon, but legal without engine powered craft. I wouldn't want to float through a landowners deek spread with a blind full of 3" BB's!

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            #7
            In the state of Nebraska the water is open to the public, but the bank and riverbed are privately owned. Meaning you can legally float any river, but if you touch the river bed or bank without permission you would be trespassing. Dropping anchor is touching the bottom. It's a pretty common issue in the paddling community, and it is usually spelled out in paddling resources.

            Theoretically you could float and jump shoot birds as long as they are shot over the water, land in the water, and you can retrieve them from the water. However, with a blind around every corner on the Platte it seems like a good way to get into an altercation with a blind full or armed hunters. It also seems like a good way to find yourself arguing waterway rights before a judge.

            South Dakota and Iowa laws aren't the same as Nebraska, so if you're hunting along the Missouri with an Iowa or South Dakota license refer to the laws in those states.

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              #8
              One thought....instead of trying to "work the system" or find a loop-hole, why not go knock on some doors or go about it with some boots on the ground? It probably is not going to be easy, as it was stated, there are blinds up and down most rivers in the flyway, but nothing worth having is going to be easy, right?

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