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Montana Stream Access Law
The Best in the West

The Bridge Access Fight

It isn’t over yet folks

Many folks have the idea that the stream and bridge access is settled for good with the Public Land Water Access Association victory in court and passage of HB190.

Well, it isn’t.

HB 190 applies only to “county roads”. The status of right-of-way and access on prescriptive roads is not settled. (Prescriptive road right of ways are those acquired by public use rather than by petition.)

In the Ruby River case Judge Tucker did not rule on the Seylor Lane road and bridge portion of the PLWA case. It is likely to go to a trial which will determine access on roads deemed ‘prescriptive easements’. The prescriptive status of Seylor Lane is an issue as is the width of the right-of way at the bridge . Even if Judge Tucker finds that Seylor Lane has a prescriptive easement (which is likely) he could still rule that the easement narrows at the bridge and public access is not possible without trespassing.

What’s more, our anti-access adversaries may choose to appeal Judge Tucker’s rulings. While they have little chance of success, they have deep pockets.

related articles

Ruby River Stream Access Victory
( 07/01/2016 )   7/1/2016PLWA, once again, has been victorious in the battle for the public's stream access on the Ruby River, from the Seyler Lane Bridge, likely the original stagecoach route from Salt Lake City, north to Virginia City and Helena.It has been over a decade that PLWA (formerly known as PLAAI) has been involved in a lawsuit over public access to the Ruby River from Seyler Lane and the Seyler Bridge, a public prescriptive easement right-of-way in Madison County.

"Dark Money" Brought to Light
( 07/01/2016 )   The June-July, Newscasts section of Fly Fisherman reported on the recent investigation by Montana's Commissioner of Political Practices, Jonathan Motl, into a dark money campaign that could overturn Montana's Stream Access.Fly Fisherman recounted the Montana Growth Network's campaign contributions to District Judge Laurie McKinnon's run for our Montana Supreme Court.

public land issues

Seyler Lane Update
9/24/2015Seyler Bridge Easement - More Than Just RecreationUpdate - Kennedys attorney requested a postponement of the September 21 hearing.

Tenderfoot - Four Years and Counting
9/24/2015Tenderfoot Creek is a tributary of the Smith River, joining the Smith a mile or so north of Camp Baker.

    18 more public land issues

Result of Bridge Access Law

Public Land/Water Access Association Inc. or PLWA, is a citizen group organized and operated under the Montana nonprofit corporation act.

Articles and Information on this site represent the opinion of the writer and are not intended as legal advice. Legal counsel may be needed in dealing with specific access situations and issues.
      PLWA.ORG   -   Public Land & Water Association