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  • National Forest Land

    For a while now we've talked about doing a very very small immersion type event with maybe another unit or two. Nothing big. What are the laws/ rules for doing that type of thing on National Forest Land. Who do I need to talk to to get permission. I don't want my picketts popping at each other and an army of game wardens swoop in and try to take us out. Whats yalls experience?
    Captain Andy Witt
    52nd Geo Vol Inf Co I CSA
    Blue Ridge Mess

    http://www.52ndgeorgia.webs.com

  • #2
    Re: National Forest Land

    It's been a few years but we put on four small events at Land Between The Lakes and they were a joy to work with. Except for horses it was more or less anything goes and we were never monitored during events. Our preliminary scouting trip we went dressed out and drove past several NO GUNS ALLOWED signs. Ten feet from the car a ranger pulled up to ask if we had permits for our guns. Told no he says "Well I better write you one then." Meet with them sooner rather than later and be honest. Other folks on here have also put on events on public lands and can give good advice. The recent Fort Donelson event even got horse restrictions relaxed. Good luck.
    John Duffer
    Independence Mess
    MOOCOWS
    WIG
    "There lies $1000 and a cow."

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    • #3
      Re: National Forest Land

      Admiral Duffer

      For my own edification, do you know any of the rationale for 'no horses' ?

      I know that we had riding horses, wagon mules, and oxen for the Ground Hornet's Banks Grand Retreat and Into the Piney Woods. And remembering that one of your LBL events had horses, is this something that varied from one season to the next?

      As In The Van was on private land, there was not a restriction on that Adventure, but as we continue to look for more history and locations for similar efforts, we'd rather not spend time looking at impossible settings.
      Terre Hood Biederman
      Yassir, I used to be Mrs. Lawson. I still run period dyepots, knit stuff, and cause trouble.

      sigpic
      Wearing Grossly Out of Fashion Clothing Since 1958.

      ADVENTURE CALLS. Can you hear it? Come ON.

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      • #4
        Re: National Forest Land

        Mrs Lawson

        They seemed worried the horses would eat bark and damage trees !? The one where we had horses they weren't allowed to camp and had to move every night to one of the designated trail riding area. The Fort Donelson-Fort Henry area was especially forbidden because of environmental issues but Jerry Ross and associates got them to relent.
        John Duffer
        Independence Mess
        MOOCOWS
        WIG
        "There lies $1000 and a cow."

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: National Forest Land

          I think that Jerry convinced Mr. Jobe at Donelson that the average horse will eat no more that six trees during the course of a weekend.......

          Actually, this is easing at many of the National Battlefields across the country and it is largely due to the efforts that many of us have put into being good stewards of the grounds and proving to them that we are not a bunch of yahoos, etc. John, your success at LBL, Jerry's at Donelson and our own success on the Shiloh battlefield and also Stones River is an indication that the good reputation of those who have horses (or weapons) on these grounds is one that is worth gold. I would defend that good name to the highest levels as I know how quickly it can evaporate with a couple of knuckle-heads.

          I would suggest that Andy approach them with respect and point out that their peers in some of the aforementioned parks allow this type of thing for those who are respectful and responsible. But......don't just talk the talk, but walk the walk. You will be representing all of us who have worked very hard in this realm.

          regards,
          Mark
          Last edited by Mark Choate; 08-13-2012, 10:12 AM.
          J. Mark Choate
          7th TN. Cavalry, Co. D.

          "Let history dictate our impressions.......not the other way around!"

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          • #6
            Re: National Forest Land

            For the Fort Donelson event we had the Superintent on our side. Steve went with us to get the LBL folks on board . They had a directive to help promote the 150th anniversary event. It helped that Gentleman like Mr.Duffer had been a great example of past event host . Fort Donelson had many ducks in a row to pull it off with the Horses. It might not happen again ,but it did this year !It made many people happy around Dover.So ...maybe it could again .......
            Jerry Ross
            Withdraw to Fort Donelson Feb 2012



            Just a sinner trying to change

            Hog Driver
            Lead ,Follow or Get out of the way !

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            • #7
              Re: National Forest Land

              Andy,

              The gents here have pretty much covered the basics with NPS land. Here is a little something that I've learned over the years. Each NPS or forest site can be different be it how the management/rangers like/dislike reenactors, or specialty rules for the specific site, as in wildlife or flora sensitivity. So, short story is if Site A says no, have a back up site. Also, check into state or county sites too if your first choices do not work out. Good luck!
              Herb Coats
              Armory Guards &
              WIG

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              • #8
                Re: National Forest Land

                Gents,

                For an event on USDA Forest Service property (which is not the same thing as USDI Park Service property), the best thing to do is contact the Ranger District on the National Forest you’d like to hold your event on (find your forest and district here: http://www.fs.fed.us/).

                Typically, you will need to talk with the District Ranger or Other Resources Assistant (ORA), (the technical title for the person in charge of recreation), about a Special Uses Permit (SUP). Read up on that here: http://www.fs.fed.us/specialuses/spe..._process.shtml

                If you are not charging a fee or have fewer than 75 participants, you probably won’t have to go through this permitting process, but it is a good idea to find out what else is going on at that time, or if there are any obvious conflicts (hunting season, other recreation events, controlled burns, timber sales, etc.).

                The Forest Service is set up to accommodate a variety of uses. Be honest about what you want to do and where, and you will probably get a lot of help in working it out.

                Regards,

                geoffrey lehmann
                geoffrey lehmann

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                • #9
                  Re: National Forest Land

                  To help lay the background on what we had to go through at the last 150th LBL / Donelson event.

                  First off the event was held on two pieces of government property, the US Department of Forresty and the National Park Service, and I'll tell you now, that those two government agencies do not often play well with each other. Both initiatives of these two services are different.

                  This leads us to the issue with horses used at LBL, Horses are allowed in designated areas and are done so for various reasons. However, the big ones we had to overcome where 1. Picketing the horses on the trees. (Damage to trees) 2. Using horses on hiking trails. (erosion). Here is how its listed on their website: "3.Horses, motor vehicles, and mountain bikes are prohibited on hiking trails except for approved organized events and on designated segments of the North/South Trail."

                  In regards to weapons, as it stated in the agreement, all weapons had to be black powder muzzle loading and breech loading and firing blanks only.


                  What helped us at this event was 1. Previous relationships, 2. Current Local relationships, 3. Time of year we had it (out of season), 4. It was the 150th (with alot of support), 5. Fort Henry is on LBL and both the NPS and USDA Forresty are pushed to combine efforts in historical preservation / acitivies.

                  We made a very good effort to play give and take with the Forresty Service, We took our wagons off the hiking trail, but they let us have our cavalry go along with us. They wouldn't let us camp right on the Fort Henry property, but they gave us an ample location for logistical and period camping.

                  You will need to fill out a special use permit and if your event is less than 75 people, you'll have a better chance at getting approval.

                  Not sure if this helps or not, but dealing with the Forrestry Service is alot different than dealing with the NPS.

                  John Walsh
                  John Walsh


                  "Is a gentleman with a brostache invited to this party?''

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