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Thread: Huron-Manistee National Forests Firearm Information

  1. #1
    Regular Member PDinDetroit's Avatar
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    I have been in contact with the Huron-Manistee National Forest Service Office in trying to determine information about firearms rules/regulations in their National Forest in preparation for a Guys Camping Trip. I could not determine the detailed information that I was seeking from their website, so I decided to contact the Forest Service Office via email. This topic post lists the interaction and the information I now have.

    From the interaction, it appears that the "Public Information Specialist" has a definite anti-gun bias but was not over the top. More importantly, it appears that the Forest Service Office may be unaware of Open Carry in MI. Since their officers enforce the rules/regulations, I think it best to provide them some Open Carry Information. Any suggestions on what to send and how to approach the situation would be welcome!


    *** First Email ***
    Hello,

    I have a few questions about Recreational Activities within the Huron National Forest that I could not find on the website. I am specifically looking for information on requirements about hunting, target shooting, and firearms handling at the Primitive Camp at Loud Pond. The following are my questions:

    1. Do the Huron National Forest Laws/Rules/Regulations follow the Michigan Laws, including DNR Regulations, pertaining to Hunting, Target Shooting, and Firearms Handling?

    2. Do the Huron National Forest Laws/Rules/Regulations follow the Michigan Laws for Open Carry of a Pistol?
    Reference: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/ms...6_238184_7.pdf

    3. The Loud Pond Unit Map shows the area directly to the North and East of Sites 24-C, 25-C, and 26-C to be National Forest/Federal Ownership. There is a Powerline within that area that comes from Loud Dam and runs North, then Northwest, and then West. Is that area actually under National Forest/Federal Ownership or the Power Company that maintains it? If it is Power Company owned, can you provide the general guidelines for property boundaries and possible contact details for them?

    4. Are there any safe shooting zones established for Hunting or Target Practice at Loud Pond?

    Please contact me with any needed clarifications on my requests. Thank you for any assistance you can provide.

    ***First Response***
    Dear xxx:

    Thank you for your request for information regarding hunting, target shooting and firearms handling on the Huron-Manistee National Forests.

    We definitely follow all state laws and regulations regarding hunting, target shooting and firearms handling. Target shooting is allowed in the forest, however, there are some strong guidelines to follow. There is no target shooting or hunting allowed in the Loud Pond area or any other camping area where people are recreating.

    You must possess a legal permit to carry a firearm and again follow all state laws and regulations.

    Please refer to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Hunting Guide for open seasons as the DNR determines when the seasons are.

    All the land you are referring to along the powerline is owned by the Huron-Manistee National Forests.

    Thank you again for your interest in the Huron-Manistee National Forests.

    Carol Nilsson
    Public Information Specialist
    Fire Information Officer
    Huron-Manistee National Forests
    1755 S. Mitchell Street
    Cadillac, Mi 49601
    (231) 775-2421
    Cell: (231) 878-3802
    cnilsson@fs.fed.us

    ***Second Email***
    Carol -

    Thank you for the quick response! Your email was very helpful.

    I wanted to make sure of things before our annual camp-out there, which has been going on for more than 10 years now. We absolutely love that area and the fact that you have to boat in to get there! You guys have always done right by us while we were there and we appreciate the way things are handled. We are probably one of your safer groups as we are a No Alcohol Camp (don't need it to enjoy the woods). I have been on trips down the Pine River for 17 years now and look forward to the day that there is less alcohol there as well.

    Can you help me with further guidelines for Hunting and Target Practice in the area? Would it be defined as being more than 200' from the water, as is the Dispersed Camping rule about not setting up camp within that distance? If not, what guideline should be used?

    ***Second Response***
    Hi xxx!

    Target practice with a rifle or bow and arrow is permitted on National Forest land provided you abide by all State Laws and Federal Regulations. A state hunting license is not required if you are shooting at an identifiable, artificially constructed target and there is no attempt to take game.

    Discharging a firearm is also prohibited across or on a Forest development road or a body of water adjacent thereto, or where any person or property is exposed to injury or damage as a result of such discharge

    Discharging a firearm is also prohibited within 150 yards of any campground, recreation area, trails, roads, etc. This would include the Loud Pond Camping area.

    When target practicing, be sure persons involved use a good safe backup and pack out what they pack in (paper targets, shells, cans, etc.) Using glass and trees for target practice is prohibited.

    Target shooting with a rifle (including a .22 caliber rimfire) or shotgun with slug, buckshot, ball loads or cut sheels is prohibited on public land 5 days prior to deer rifle season (November 10-14.)

    I hope this answers your questions. My recommendation is to leave your firearms at home and enjoy your camping experience!


    Carol Nilsson
    Public Information Specialist
    Fire Information Officer
    Huron-Manistee National Forests
    1755 S. Mitchell St.
    Cadillac, Mi 49601
    (231) 775-2421
    Cell: (231) 878-3802
    cnilsson@fs.fed.us

    The secret of happy living is not to do what you like but to like what you do!

    Rights are like muscles. You must EXERCISE THEM to keep them from becoming atrophied.

  2. #2
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    hah! "leave your firearms at home..."

    Quite the line.

    Not anti-gun at all... :-P

  3. #3
    Regular Member Michigander's Avatar
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    I'm as likely to leave my guns at home when going to a National Forest as I am to sell all my guns and join the Brady campaign.
    Answer every question about open carry in Michigan you ever had with one convenient and free book- http://libertyisforeveryone.com/open-carry-resources/

    The complete and utter truth can be challenged from every direction and it will always hold up. Accordingly there are few greater displays of illegitimacy than to attempt to impede free thought and communication.

  4. #4
    Regular Member PDinDetroit's Avatar
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    Yeah, I was PO'd when I first read that "leave your guns at home" garbage. The thoughts of "don't tread on me" and calling her boss to give him a piece of my mind danced in my head. I decided to let it sit for a few days and then decide what to do.

    Being the respectful citizen that I now am, I decided to post here and send Open Carry info to her and her manager's attention.

    Kill 'em with kindness generally works better!!!
    Rights are like muscles. You must EXERCISE THEM to keep them from becoming atrophied.

  5. #5
    Regular Member autosurgeon's Avatar
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    Carry in National Forests and BLM land has never been a problem as they follow the rules in each state for state parks. It was National Parks and Monuments that were a problem. However when that new bill goes into effect next year they will follow the same rules as state parks in each state.

    So basically right now National Forests and BLM land are ok in MI because MI allows carry in state parks. National parks and Monuments are off limites untill next year. Specific date eludes me.... The part that it is good to know is about discharge of firearms for the purposes of target practice!!
    Anything I post may be my opinion and not the law... you are responsible to do your own verification.

    Blackstone (1753-1765) maintains that "the law holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."

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