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Thread: When Road Hunting becomes illegal?

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Default When Road Hunting becomes illegal?

    I have seen videos (I'm sure we all have) where the robo deer is used to catch poachers. In the videos the "poachers" are road hunting and generally pull out binoculars and watch the buck from the truck. Some shoot and some move on. I have seen where some are on public property that is legal to hunt.

    My question is when it becomes illegal? Perhaps I fail to understand all of the pertinent laws (never really needed to). If they leave the roadway and then shoot are they okay? Are they only being prosecuted when shooting from the truck or roadway?

    So what is the legal method that so many road hunters, that we all see (or are), use once they spot game from the highway turnout in the truck?
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Default road hunting

    The illegal part is shooting from the vehicle, or roadway. Also you can't shoot across a roadway. Different states have different rules, but generally there is a certain distance you have to be from a PUBLICALLY maintained road. There are different rules for roads on private land such as farms and privately owned timberlands.

    The other illegal activity which goes along with the guys getting busted for shooting the robo deer is the use of artificial light. A lot of the robo deer are placed on a corner of a road so the headlights will flash across the eyes. Then people will spot them at night and will either use their headlights or a spotlight when they shoot.

    Each state is different so be sure you know the local rules.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    According to Alaska laws, "hunting" from the road is not illegal - it is the shooting from, on, or across a roadway that is illegal. Of course, some of those "robo-deer" stings are also done using does in buck-only areas or on land closed to hunting. Alaskan hunters are legal in using the side of roadways to spot game, as long as they remove themselves from said roadway before firing a shot.

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    So then, does any right of way or easement count as the road? In other words how far off is safe?
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    The law reads the drivable surface of a constructed road.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Unfortunately the actual definition of a road is difficult in this state, as there are many gravel roads, or things that appear to be trails that may be defined as a road. There are also old trails that may not be currently or well maintained that could be considered a road.

    To be safe, simply don't shoot from or across a road or trail. It is all about safety, and if you don't have time to take a few steps to get off the road, you shouldn't be huryring the shot.

    You also need to be familiar enough with the area you are hunting so that there isn't a road between you and the game you are shooting at.

  7. #7

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    Like the earlier posts state "you may not shoot on, from, or across a highway" Here is the regulation that states that:

    http://www.touchngo.com/lglcntr/akst...section085.htm

    So the next question is what does the state consider a higway? Well according to the reglulations a highway is the "drivable surface of a constructed road"

    http://www.touchngo.com/lglcntr/akst...section990.htm

    I personally don't have much respect for road hunters, I find the act of hunting for game from your vehicle not sporting. True sportsmen get out and stalk the animals. But legal opinion and personal opinion are not the same, so as long as you step off the drivable surface of the road (sanding in the grass is a safe bet) and as long as your bullet doesn't cross the road or another roadway your good to go.

    I attached links to the State regulations concerning this so you can read for yourself. Good luck hunting!

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CapnCrunch View Post
    I personally don't have much respect for road hunters, I find the act of hunting for game from your vehicle not sporting. True sportsmen get out and stalk the animals.
    Good post, Capn. Thanks for the accurate definitions. Whose a sportsman? Alaska law requires meat salvage. We're all meat hunters trying to feed our families............right? Long as we obey the law it's all good, eh?
    I think your required to join the Back Country Hunters to throw ethical stones at others on this site. Probably someone who could help you with that somewhere here.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CapnCrunch View Post
    I personally don't have much respect for road hunters, I find the act of hunting for game from your vehicle not sporting. True sportsmen get out and stalk the animals.
    You know, I tend to agree that road hunting isn't "sporting", but marten brings up a good point about feeding our families. I never set out to go road hunting, but if I'm driving home from an unsuccessful hunt and see a legal moose from the road, am I going to pull over and try to harvest it? You bet I am. God has provided well for my family, and I am not about to pass up an opportunity that he provided for me. I've harvested some animals after brutally tough hikes through the mountains that are immensely satisfying, but I've also filled my freezer with spike bulls that were standing within 30 yards of my atv. Just as sporting? No, but just as filling for the stomach. The ends don't always justify the means, but sometimes taking an animal on the side of the road is perfectly justified, in my humble opinion.

    (I'm reminded of a story a friend has shared with me of when he, his wife, and his four kids were living on a single meager salary out in Kenny Lake. He hunted long and hard that year to no avail. On the closing night of the season as he was driving home dejected at the thought of not being able to feed his family, he spotted a young bull standing in a pond being photographed by Japanese tourists. He respectfully waited for them to get into their van and leave after taking pictures, but then he got out his rifle and pulled the trigger. He had never been a road hunter either, but that single moose did more to pull his family through the winter than any other animal he has harvested before or since.)

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    I have to agree with MT and Brian... Not all hunters are out there to be "Sporting". Last year I had a cow tag for a portion of 14A and did a lot of road hunting in the evenings after work because that was all I had time for. On the weekends though, I would get out and stomp the brush.

    I ended up taking one near a road and don't have any problem with it. I intended on filling my freezer and since road hunting was another way of spending some time looking, thats what I did.

    Being "sporting" is great, but sometimes the end goal is simply stocking the freezer.
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    Default If It"s Legal?

    I also don"'t think it"s sporting to shoot roadside animals, BUT got to be carefull not to mix our own self imposed limitations with what the law allows. I've got friends that hunt bears over bait quite often, and have no desire to do the same, I guess to each his own. Even if it"s legal in Alaska i'de be willing to guess that the non hunting public would agree with Capt Crunch.
    ; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 SAMUEL 2;30

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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    Good post, Capn. Thanks for the accurate definitions. Whose a sportsman? Alaska law requires meat salvage. We're all meat hunters trying to feed our families............right? Long as we obey the law it's all good, eh?
    I think your required to join the Back Country Hunters to throw ethical stones at others on this site. Probably someone who could help you with that somewhere here.
    I don't deny that my hunting opinion is not shared by all, my opinion was formed years ago by my observations from hunters cruising up and down the highway "hunting". And yeah, seeing that gut pile just left on the side of the road didn't help. I know not every road hunter does that.

    To me hunting is more than just gathering meat for the dinner table. I look forward every year to the hunt, and if I come up short at the end of the day it doesn't really matter. The pursuit is always more fun than the catch.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKmud View Post
    I have to agree with MT and Brian... Not all hunters are out there to be "Sporting". Last year I had a cow tag for a portion of 14A and did a lot of road hunting in the evenings after work because that was all I had time for. On the weekends though, I would get out and stomp the brush.

    I ended up taking one near a road and don't have any problem with it. I intended on filling my freezer and since road hunting was another way of spending some time looking, thats what I did.

    Being "sporting" is great, but sometimes the end goal is simply stocking the freezer.
    BrianM and AKmud you guys bring up good points. I guess, I have never gone a season totally skunked, but I can empathize with your point of view. But I too am trying to fill my freezer for my family. Salmon and game meat are the staple of my diet. So I understand the need to fill the freezer. To be completely honest if I was coming back from a hunt and saw a nice moose off of the road, I don't think I would pass it up either. But the difference is that I set out to beat the brush and not beat the streets looking for my animal.

    You guys know the hunters I am talking about we all see them every year driving up and down the highways in their RVs or their trucks. I guess I view them as lazy hunters or hunters who can't stalk their game. Or quite possibly I'm just stuborn and enjoy doing things the hard way!

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the clarification.

    I know that I will draw ire over saying that but then I guess that's just the kind of guy I am.

    I hate confusing "sporting" with hunting. To me "fair" chase is a farce. If I wanted to be sporting I'd enlist and go over to the sand pit where they shoot back. I don't want the animal to have too much of a chance and I am not one to quivel over how much chance they should have. Safety and the law aside I am fine with folks shooting sitting ducks, netting fish as they go up river, using electronic callers or robo ducks or...

    I will be road hunting for the first time in my life this year because the (young) kids and the wife want to all come for the first time. (whereas before I have been often accused of diliberately picking the hardest line up a mountain). I don't know that we will be succesful, but our intent is first and foremost to get meat together.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Yep, I know the type of hunter you're referring to, Capn. It's not my cup of tea either, and I don't like it when hunters don't do their best to put forth a positive image of hunting to the non-hunting (voting) public. In the end, though, I just feel sad for these hunters. If it's all they can do, then that's fine. But if road hunting is all they know, how sad that they miss the campfires, the views from 5,000 foot ridgelines, the frost on the tent in the morning and the sound of raven's wings flying overhead. Truly these are the moments that I enjoy most while hunting.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RainGull View Post
    I will be road hunting for the first time in my life this year because the (young) kids and the wife want to all come for the first time. (whereas before I have been often accused of diliberately picking the hardest line up a mountain). I don't know that we will be succesful, but our intent is first and foremost to get meat together.
    Good luck to you, RainGull. Do you know what you'll be chasing yet? How exciting to bring your family along!

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    Member bushrat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper
    I think your required to join the Back Country Hunters to throw ethical stones at others on this site. Probably someone who could help you with that somewhere here.
    Ah, low blow, Mike. Very low blow. Way below the belt. Ouchee. I'm deducting a point from your scorecard <grin>.

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Your right, Mark, it was a low blow. I weas mostly hoping to just make folks smile.
    However, recent studies of posts on this site do show a correlation between ABCH members and the average size of ethical stones thrown by forum members. After weighing many stones, it was found that ABCH stones were on average, 3.5 pounds heavier than non member stones..........hahahahahaha.

    Hey raingull.............good luck. I hope you cruise down a back road and a 65 incher with 3 in. of fat on his back steps out and stands there while you pop him. Unspool the winch and drag him into the truck and go to the butcher shop. In my mind, hunting is all about FINDING an animal. If some are too lazy, or too preoccupied with wife and kids, to do nothing more than drive down a road and look/hunt, I see no reason they are any less deserving than myself or anyone else.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

  19. #19
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    However, recent studies of posts on this site do show a correlation between ABCH members and the average size of ethical stones thrown by forum members. After weighing many stones, it was found that ABCH stones were on average, 3.5 pounds heavier than non member stones.
    Do you have links to these studies? Was the research peer-reviewed? And who funded these studies, and what is their ulterior motive?

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    Default Ah Yes

    Yes,I think the studies were conducted on the worlds strongest man contest, you know when they run arround lifting those giant stones! I want to say the, huseaflet, stone! The winner gets to road hunt.LOL
    ; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 SAMUEL 2;30

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