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Thread: Visiting Colorado.

  1. #1
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    I hold a Texas CHL and Washington non-resident CPL, so I expect no difficulties carrying concealed or open in Colorado over the next two weeks. I will be staying in Boulder the bulk of the time, travelling to Basalt for a 4-day weekend, and spending some time in Rocky Mountain National Park.

    I understand that in the national parks, I must leave my guns behind (or at least not be noticed) until February 2010. Aside from that, I should be free to carry open or concealed anywhere I go outside of Denver and certain (marked) municipally-owned buildings.

    Are there any other restrictions I need to be aware of that aren't obvious from the flyer at handgunlaw.us? I am a supporter of open carry, though not certain I would open carry without a second firearm concealed. For my friends' comfort level, I think I will be primarily carrying concealed to avoid LEO interference, but think I will be doing a bit of OC when alone just to see what response I get.

    If anyone is in the Boulder or Basalt area, feel free to suggest a meetup, as I'll be kicking around on vacation while I'm here. I think the folks I'm staying with will have me busy most evenings, but I try to be flexible.

    Lastly, out of curiousity, do we have many fly fishermen on this board? I've been contemplating safe carry on the water. If I fall in the Frying Pan, I'll feel pretty dumb as I clean my Kimber. :P

    Thanks to any and all responders, I'll be checking periodically even after I'm in CO.

    --ConcealedTexan

  2. #2
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    The only big thing I didn't see specifically mentioned there is that there is NO OC in Denver. It sounds like your TX CCW is good here, and if it's not you can still carry in your vehicle without a license, even through Denver.

  3. #3
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    FogRider wrote:
    The only big thing I didn't see specifically mentioned there is that there is NO OC in Denver. It sounds like your TX CCW is good here, and if it's not you can still carry in your vehicle without a license, even through Denver.
    What he said about Denver. If you are a resident of Texas and you have a Texas CHL, your license to carry is good here throughout the state.

    Your Washington non-resident permit doesn't matter here because non-resident permits are not honored.

  4. #4
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    So, I've been enjoying my stay in Colorado, and even doing a bit of OC, but ran into one strange thing: The Boulder Open Spaces and Mountain Parks prohibit weapons/firearms (refs: here and here) The second link even claims "severe fines apply."

    This doesn't seem to mesh with my understanding of Colorado preemption laws. I had guessed that at worst they could charge me with trespassing, but I'm not sure that's even possible with what is city-owned land. As a compromise, I kept my .45 under my shirt and decided to look into it later. Any comments would be appreciated, as I intend to do some more hiking tomorrow!

    --ConcealedTexan

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    It looks like the key is at the top of your first link: "The following regulations are in effect on the City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks for the enjoyment and protection of this unique resource. Please take the time to read posted regulations at each trailhead as they vary by area. "

    And here's the state law:
    CRS 29-11.7-104
    A local government may enact an ordinance, regulation, or other law that prohibits the open carrying of a firearm in a building or specific area within the local government's jurisdiction. If a local government enacts an ordinance, regulation, or other law that prohibits the open carrying of a firearm in a building or specific area, the local government shall post signs at the public entrances to the building or specific area informing persons that the open carrying of firearms is prohibited in the building or specific area.

    If you really want to OC, what you need to do is look at all the trailhead/entrance signagein the particular park or area that you want to hike in. If they ALL say that guns are prohibited, then you need to CC. CRS 18-12-214(1)(a) gives the state true andfull preemption for CC.

  6. #6
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    I think I must disagree with your analysis. First, later in the first link you will find this verbiage:
    Possession or discharge of a firearm or weapon, including paint ball guns, is prohibited on OSMP.
    (emph. mine)

    And there was signage at the Chautauqua park and at the trailhead specifically saying possession of a firearm in that area was illegal. This seems to fall squarely under the provisions of the pre-emption law for CCW, but there is no provision made for that in what I've seen.

    Now that I've been adequately provoked... I have dug up the Boulder Municipal Code chapter on weapons (here) and would like to point out Sec. 5-8-22 (a) which states:

    (a) It is an affirmative defense to a charge of violating sections 5-8-3, "Discharge of Firearms," 5-8-4, "Possessing and Discharging Firearm or Bow in Park or Open Space," 5-8-5, "Negligently Shooting Bow or Slingshot," 5-8-6, "Aiming Weapon at Another," 5-8-7, "Flourishing Deadly Weapon in Alarming Manner," and 5-8-8, "Possession of Loaded Firearms," B.R.C. 1981, that the defendant was:

    (1) Reasonably engaged in lawful self-defense under the statutes of the State of Colorado; or

    (2) Reasonably exercising the right to keep and bear arms in defense of the defendant's or another's home, person, and property, or in aid of the civil power when legally thereto summoned.
    5-8-22(a)(2) seems to pretty much OK it if carrying "in defense of the defendant's ... person", which makes this entire thing seem to be about those carrying for plinking or hunting or suchlike. This is an affirmitive defense, which means that they may arrest you, but you probably wouldn't be convicted if you were carrying peacefully. Also, there are laws against possession of a loaded firearm and carrying concealed weapons, for which there are exceptions in 5-8-22 for CCW permit holders, but only the 'possession of loaded firearms' code explicitly states:

    5-8-8 Possession of Loaded Firearms.

    (c) A peace officer shall not undertake an arrest under this section without first giving due consideration to the city's burden of proof with regard to the affirmative defenses set forth in section 5-8-22, "Defenses," B.R.C. 1981.
    So it would seem that even these defenses do not prohibit an officer from hassling you even where you are carrying legally. I don't think that would be a common issue, but it's an interesting observation. It's upsetting to see the extent to which municipal codes can infringe on your rights. 5-8-22(a) does seem to allow open carry for self-defense purposes, but 5-8-21 requires firearms be carried cased outside of one's property, vehicle or business; though CCW licensees are again exempted. This seems to disallow unlicensed OC! The more I read, the worse this gets. And 5-8-21 does not have any exceptions/defenses listed under 5-8-22. I suppose the question then is whether a holster counts as a carrying case "recognizable as a gun carrying case by a reasonable person."

    I will continue to CC in boulder and in Boulder OSMP areas. I fear Colorado may have more problems with OC than the OCDO summary lets on.

    --ConcealedTexan

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