Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

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Dustin DuBois
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by Dustin DuBois » May 14th, 2018, 1:34 pm

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2018, 1:30 pm
I'm just trolling here:

"When the Eagle Creek Overlook group site is occupied, the public should not go in there or around that area."

Is there a regulation or is she just saying it would be nice if people didn't go there?

Is there a sign saying not to enter?

Me - I don't care about any of that. If my presence is annoying, I will go somewhere else even if it's not illegal.

As long as I'm trolling here, the NW Forest Pass is legal. People misrepresent legal rulings. If a trailhead has a toilet, picnic table, and garbage can they can charge. It has to be for just the area around those facilities, you can't require the pass over a long stretch of highway just because there's those facilities at one spot.
Troll =P.

By all means, see if they'll use a more suitable word than "should", but pedantic semantics aside, I think you know what it means ;D.

They've deemed the area reservation-only, and defined when/what that means. I've provided their trail of authority.

---

I return to my initial point of this thread: that the Field Guide be amended to more accurately portray the limited access during the reservation season, to wit: no public access (foot or vehicle) beyond the gate when it's occupied (which it almost always, and you have to break that rule to find out if it's occupied, so best to just not try during rental season -- or, better yet, contact them and see if there is an unreserved period). If there isn't enough proof in this thread for that, then there won't be. =)

Either way, feel free to bin this thread. Discussions about the authority/regulations/definitions can be opened up in a new thread. Didn't intend for this to be anything more than "Field Guide Support" lol.
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retired jerry
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2018, 2:14 pm

That's not my page in the field guide so I was just ignoring this.

To pay penance for my trolling I just looked at the page. I think Bobcat added something. Do you still have specific edits that should be made?

Now that I've stuck my foot in it, the next time I'm there I'll have to check it out and see if there are any signs. Could be a while since it's closed.

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Dustin DuBois
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by Dustin DuBois » May 14th, 2018, 2:15 pm

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2018, 2:14 pm
That's not my page in the field guide so I was just ignoring this.

To pay penance for my trolling I just looked at the page. I think Bobcat added something. Do you still have specific edits that should be made?

Now that I've stuck my foot in it, the next time I'm there I'll have to check it out and see if there are any signs. Could be a while since it's closed.
I did see, and appreciate, his edits. I would still like it to be less ambiguous, but those were edits that he made while still waiting to hear back from CRGNSA.

Yeah, I'm itching to get out there. As it looks now, the campground is still closed entirely through mid-June, so the exit may not open until closer to then. The timing of the campground opening may also be due entirely to the exit closure - they still have safety concerns at the exit itself.


-edit--
To be a little more helpful, these are changes I would suggest, if appropriate to the field guide (at bobcat/etc's discretion).
  • I'd list the Seasons as: Oct 1st - April 30th
  • I'd note that the trail leading up to the campground (and only to there) is a *part* of the campground itself, as is the "use trail" that's only accessible in the middle of the campground.
  • I'd note that, during May 1st - September 30th, the campground is only accessible when unoccupied, but Forest Service may still ask you to leave without a reservation. And if you do go up the hill anyway, and it's occupied, then turn around and go back down - don't wait to be asked to leave.
  • Emphasize the loveliness of the area in the Spring and Fall (it really is lovely!).
  • I'd change the following line:
    Group campground (reservations required) open May 1st to September 30th
    to say:
    Group campground, reservations required May 01 - September 30, open Oct 01 - April 30.
  • I'd emphasize that this is Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area land, not general public land, and is under the management of the Forest Service and the Gorge Commission.
Since this is a field guide for a specific "hike", mostly I'd like to discourage people from treating it as open public land (as it isn't), and to only treat it as a "hike" in the off-season. It's better for everybody that way. You don't irritate people expecting privacy, and you don't have to get involved in a potentially inflammatory situation for being where you aren't supposed to be (whether with Forest Service, or with renters).
Last edited by Dustin DuBois on May 14th, 2018, 5:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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retired jerry
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2018, 2:37 pm

Do you have a specific suggestion?

Change "xxx" to "yyy"?

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Water
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by Water » May 14th, 2018, 2:37 pm

the designation of scenic area is not really what's in contention here. I don't think you'll find too many people in this forum that find the 'national scenic area' to be controversial. Maybe some though. Is the specific land with the campground privately owned land? or is it publicly owned? Do your camp reservation dollars go to specifically maintain it or do they go to a general fund of user-generated revenues in the same way that the FS gets tax money from all tax payers to use as they see fit?

Is the place where you rent a beach house and people aren't even allowed to walk on the sand in front of it on public land (not private property?) if it is private property, that's not even germane to this conversation so why bring up that example?

You tell me an instance of public lands and privacy rules.. There can be permit entry sure, but that is spelled out, and going without a permit puts one in violation. Likewise if someone is occupying a cabin or a lookout.. but that does not prevent someone from for instance.. walking around fish lake when someone has the cabin rented. Or walking around the base of a lookout when it is rented.

and with deference Jerry, you know me too well!!! you think I wouldn't respond to that about NWFP?! haha In the Mt. Lemmon case in Arizona it was that they could not charge for a big swath of road, but the judge very clearly (in the discussion part of his ruling) states the FLREA cannot be used for just parking. In a separate case in the Los Padres National Forest in Southern California people used this same ruling, it was upheld, and they did a willing compromise with the FS who now must provide parking within half a mile of the fee area. In that case the plantiffs were polite in the sense that satisfied them enough, and they didn't want to spend more resource or break the FS's ability to still have their fee areas. But the FS was ruled against entirely that you are required to pay to park. Only for those certain amenities, if you use them.
"GETTLEMAN, District Judge:
The Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (“REA”)
prohibits the United States Forest Service from charging fees
“[s]olely for parking, undesignated parking, or picnicking
along roads or trailsides,” for “hiking through . . . without
using the facilities and services,” and “[f]or camping at undeveloped
sites . . . .” 16 U.S.C. § 6802(d)(1)(A), (D) & (E).
Despite these clear prohibitions, the Forest Service collects
fees from all drivers who park their vehicles in a mile-wide
piece of the Coronado National Forest running along the 28–
mile Catalina Highway, the only paved road to the summit of
Mount Lemmon, a heavily used recreational area an hour’s
drive from downtown Tucson, Arizona. "
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Dustin DuBois
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by Dustin DuBois » May 14th, 2018, 2:46 pm

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2018, 2:37 pm
Do you have a specific suggestion?

Change "xxx" to "yyy"?
lol I added that to the post right before yours, right before you posted. I thought, "I should really add something helpful". Then I made my edit, went back and refreshed the thread, no new posts. Submitted edit, and bam! There you are lol.
Water wrote:
May 14th, 2018, 2:37 pm
the designation of scenic area is not really what's in contention here ...
Again, the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area is different from every other cited example I've seen. Go read through the links I've posted, and then find a relevant example. I mentioned the originally-controversial nature of the CRGNSA Act, because it gave a tremendous amount of control of the land to the government. Other National Scenic Areas created since haven't been quite as grasping.

The designation as a National Scenic Area is the heart of it, really.

It's not "public land". It is not a "wilderness". It is not a "park". It's a congressionally-defined "area" that is a mix of public and private lands, with oversight of the Scenic Area given to the Forest Service and the Gorge Commission. That means the Forest Service controls all of the campgrounds (or this one at the least, I dunno if there even can be a campground they don't manage inside of the Scenic Area).

And the "trail" that goes to the campground, isn't any sort of exempt official trail. It's just a path that goes to the campground. I asked, specifically, if the public is to remain outside the gate, and the Forest Service response was that the public is not admitted while the location is occupied (for which a reservation is required).

Since the CRGNSA is a "special case", as far as legal authority & precedent, the Forest Service does have that authority.

Regardless, it's up to bobcat at this point (at least as far as the Field Guide is concerned - debating the regulations themselves is for another thread).

And fine, my beach house analogy was weak lol. But given the exhaustive lengths I've gone to in order to provide the relevant facts, I've just been mocked and had facts ignored. So why not throw something out there? =P
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retired jerry
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2018, 3:42 pm

I'll let Bobcat edit that :)

"Despite these clear prohibitions, the Forest Service collects
fees from all drivers who park their vehicles in a mile-wide
piece of the Coronado National Forest running along the 28–
mile Catalina Highway, the only paved road to the summit of
Mount Lemmon, a heavily used recreational area an hour’s
drive from downtown Tucson, Arizona."

It seems like the judge is saying the FS can't charge for parking in a mile wide section.

But that would imply it's okay to charge for parking in a smaller area next to the amenities.

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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by bobcat » May 14th, 2018, 7:25 pm

I have no problem editing the page based on the information given. It can always be changed later if there is a change/clarification.

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Water
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by Water » May 15th, 2018, 12:30 am

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2018, 3:42 pm
I'll let Bobcat edit that :)

"Despite these clear prohibitions, the Forest Service collects
fees from all drivers who park their vehicles in a mile-wide
piece of the Coronado National Forest running along the 28–
mile Catalina Highway, the only paved road to the summit of
Mount Lemmon, a heavily used recreational area an hour’s
drive from downtown Tucson, Arizona."

It seems like the judge is saying the FS can't charge for parking in a mile wide section.

But that would imply it's okay to charge for parking in a smaller area next to the amenities.
You forgot to read the first part Jerry! It's entirely prohibited under the FLERA, and by being overly ticket-happy the FS opened themselves up to have the meat of their activity gone through with a fine tooth comb.
"The Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (“REA”)
prohibits the United States Forest Service from charging fees
“[s]olely for parking, undesignated parking, or picnicking
along roads or trailsides,” for “hiking through . . . without
using the facilities and services,” and “[f]or camping at undeveloped
sites . . . .” 16 U.S.C. § 6802(d)(1)(A), (D) & (E)."
The FS is not abiding by the law when they charge a fee solely for parking, if you are not using any of the facilities (bathroom, picnic table, trash, etc). This is why they will not ticket anymore or will drop it if they do. They've had multiple rulings against them on this point.
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retired jerry
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Re: Eagle Creek Overlook Hike

Post by retired jerry » May 15th, 2018, 5:35 am

You're taking out of context

It says "[s]olely for parking, undesignated parking, or picnicking
along roads or trailsides"

It's okay to charge for parking at an area with facilities.

Not okay to charge for parking along road nearby

Sort of like 2A, you can't just discard the part before the comma about militias, unless you're the supremes, in which case you can do whatever you damn please :)

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