Unlocked gate

jryoung

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
5,297
Location
Unable to determine due to velocity
Came across an unlocked gate lastnight and it got me thinking so I was wondering what the internet opinion of the situation is.

The specifics, huntable timber company land (classic checkerboard with National Forest), spur road with gate, gate closed but unlocked. Unlocked but there were two holes for the locking pin, the first hole put the pin into a cylinder housing so no one could cut it. The second hole was fully exposed and just through the bar of the gate (more of a pin holder). The pin was in this hole and the padlock was locked at the bottom. There was no catch that would have held open or otherwise indicated that the gate should have been open. Another tidbit was earlier this summer they brought in some equipment in to clear the growth on the edges of the road to open it up.

So my question is, with the pin intentionally outside of the secure housing is this gate technically open? Was the locker of the gate unaware of how the system actually worked? Was it unlocked for the work done and likely someone forgot to lock it back up so it technically is closed?

I treated it as locked, but with a moose tag in my pocket my thoughts ran wildly. I was curious at to those that may have come across something like this before. I mean, what if a stiff wind blew it open when I first came across it. All signs would then indicate it should be open.
 
Last edited:

elkantlers

Well-known member
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
1,418
Location
UT
If I went through that gate you can bet when I came back out it would be locked up tight.
Unless I had permission I wouldn't go through.
 

Dan O

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
1,054
Location
Seeley Lake, Mt
I would say check the map and see what the travel plan say's. Were there any sign's near indicating the open and closed times for the various modes of travel ie; Vehicle, atv, side by side's or snowmobiles. Anymore in Mt the USFS say's unless the map say's it's open treat it as closed to motorized travel. You have to be careful anymore as they have no sense of humor if you get caught on a closed road. Ignorance is not a defense.
Dan
 

double_a85

Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2014
Messages
431
Location
Roundup, MT
Ignorance is not a defense.
Dan

But that is the defense of most people running closed roads... or driving around closed gates.

I would say it was a closed road. You mentioned it was Timber Company land? See if you can find a contact number and give em a call. They may thank you and either go out and swing the gate open or make sure it gets locked... and if its a Forest Service road a call to the local Ranger Station may get an answer too...

I would hate to go ahead and swing that gate open, spend all day up there, and come out at dark to that gate now being locked... But yet, I would also cuss like a sailor if I parked, walked up that road, get a few miles in... and some ass clown comes driving by me.
 

mtmuley

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 11, 2009
Messages
10,753
Location
montana
Yep, if you have questions about it, find out the answer. Saves trouble later. mtmuley
 

mtmander

Active member
Joined
Apr 29, 2014
Messages
846
Location
Philipsburg, MT or NC
it is our responsibility to know where we are hunting (open or private) so if it is open beyond the gate then
I would go thru , if I did not know then I would not go thru the gate.
 

Straight Arrow

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
4,989
Location
Gallatin Gateway, MT
Since attempting to contact someone who would verify open or closed might result in losing a morning hunt, park and hunt on foot. If you end up with a moose on the ground, then it's time to determine whether or not you may drive your vehicle closer for retrieval.
 

TheTone

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 14, 2002
Messages
4,573
Location
ID
So closed gate but not locked? I'd say its closed and I wouldn't drive it. My guess would be a contractor, technician or fire crew opened it and just never got back to locking it like they should have. No signage to indicate that it is closed to full size vehicles? Most timber company land up here signs roads as being closed to full size vehicles, but commonly are open to atv use.
 

johnp

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 20, 2009
Messages
269
Location
sourthern wis.
What I would do if I had time would be to walk up the gated but unlocked road the first day , Any vehicles that come by would be great for getting the information about why the gate is as it is. Contact information might be available from anyone you meet on the road .
 

Sytes

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 25, 2009
Messages
10,622
Location
Montana
Gate closed is a gate closed, in my opinion. Locked or not, that is how I treat my property.

I did however run into an interesting situation one year... A forest service gate was closed though my map showed it as open. It was not locked. I swung it open and went in to hunt for 4 days. On my way out... Well, you guessed it, it was closed and not only that, locked with a forest service lock!!!

I was peeved - no cell service, I hiked a good ways until I found a house and the gent was a good soul whom offered a pipe wrench (and a ride back :) ). The forest service road gates have that soft metal " T " type bracket easy to twist and snap. I also called the forest service and expressed my frustration only to find out they did not lock the gate. A person broke into a forest service truck and stole a bunch of locks that happened to be present. There was an active investigation into the asshat whom is trying to make OUR land his own private hunting grounds and or run some form of illegal operations. They did not elaborate for reasonable reasons.

Anyhow, short story turned long for sake of some down time at work. :)
 

the nikster

Well-known member
Joined
May 4, 2005
Messages
1,481
Location
Idaho
I go through at least 3 gates to get to my hunting area, all 3 have locks on them but the chains can be lifted over the post. I have been using these gates for 30 years and the chains only showed up in the last 10. I am 100% certain I still have legal access to go through the gates or I would not.
 

Forum statistics

Threads
102,445
Messages
1,651,049
Members
31,996
Latest member
_John_John_
Top