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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I am wheeling east of Bishop, Ca. Checking out the Bristlecone Pine Forest and hitting trails in the White mountains. I take the Wyman Canyon trail east to get back to the blacktop. It is a marked forest service road and on my gps.

No problem, down into a canyon and after 5 miles I come to a closed gate. OK, so I open the gate, drive through and close the gate. (hunting background, leave a gate the way you find it.) I figured it was the winter gate the forest service uses to close the area and maybe someone is goofing around.

Then I pass a herd of horses. Look like ranch stock and then a little cabin and a barbed wire fence and gate. The canyon is only 150 yards wide and I know I am on the correct road. Wife is getting nervous and I don't like it. No one around the cabin, so I open the gate, go through and close it. The road gets really overgrown. Now we have cattle everywhere, gps says we are on the right road. Hit a third barbed wire fence and same routine. 10 miles later I hit the highway.

The first gate may have been FS, but not the other "gates." I have never come across this on a public trail. I felt like I was driving through someones private ranch. Anyone familiar with this area or this situation? What are your thoughts on barbed wire gates on public trails?

As an aside, there were no signs of any sort at the gates and yes I have verified I was on the correct trail.

Regards, SSC
 

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That's pretty common in ranching areas of Nevada and probably in CA too. BLM or Forest Service leases out the land to ranchers and sometimes they put up internal fences and corrals across trails. It probably should have sign though:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the info. I am familiar with the leases to run cattle, but I have never seen internal gates across public trails. I have seen cattle guards. I would think a rancher would be taking a chance to do so. What would stop someone from opening the gate and not closing it?

Regards, SSC
 

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Yeah, probably not the smartest thing. Sometimes ranchers think they own the land they've leased and don't give people the benefit of the doubt.

Like you, I was taught that you leave a gate as you found it. Recently I actually read documentation regarding BLM guidelines when managing and passing through leases...I'll see if I can figure out where I saw it.
 

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Not a lot of public leases in our are but the National Forest has all kinds of private holdings interspersed. I always carry a pair of vice grips and a crescent wrench just in case you have to take a gate off just to get back home when it's dark and you're low on gas. DAMHIKT Our maps around here were last upated in 1988 and are getting pretty stale. What shows to be an open road is sometimes closed when you get 3 miles down it.
 
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