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nosmatt
07-18-2009, 1:56 PM
i hear neighbors shooting regularly. i have three acres in unincorporated madera county. there are many safe areas to shoot on my land, i just do not want the sherrif showing up telling me it is not legal.
my 9 y/o son cannot go to any of the ranges around here.

professorhard
07-18-2009, 1:57 PM
Sounds perfectly legal to me. Just make sure you're shooting in a safe direction.

Turo
07-18-2009, 2:01 PM
Yeah, as long as you aren't in the city, you should be able to shoot. And it's a plus since you are on your own private land. Like prof said, make sure you shoot in a safe direction, and have fun!

strangerdude
07-18-2009, 2:02 PM
As long as you are 1 mile away from freeways and homes, a cop told me this.

nosmatt
07-18-2009, 2:03 PM
200 yars to the house you can see from my property, and 150 yards from the one you cannot see.

i live at 3600' amongst the pines and cedars (very heavy tree cover)

Turo
07-18-2009, 2:03 PM
As long as you are 1 mile away from freeways and homes, a cop told me this.

Like I've said before, a cop can legally tell you anything he/she wants.

wildhawker
07-18-2009, 2:05 PM
As long as you are 1 mile away from freeways and homes, a cop told me this.

:rolleyes:

leitung
07-18-2009, 2:09 PM
I would check the books, make sure there is no county law saying you can't.

nosmatt
07-18-2009, 2:23 PM
[I] cannot seem to find anything on the internet for this area.

one could aways just call the sherrifs office ehh?

Decoligny
07-18-2009, 2:24 PM
As long as you are 1 mile away from freeways and homes, a cop told me this.

NEVER believe what cops tell you without first verifying the information.

There is nothing in the Penal Code that says you have to be 1 mile away from any freeway, road, or even building.

Penal Code PC374c makes it illegal to shoot on or across any public road.

Fish & Game Regulation 3004. (a) It is unlawful for any person, other than the owner, person in possession of the premises, or a person having the express permission of the owner or person in possession of the premises, to hunt or to discharge while hunting, any firearm or other deadly weapon within 150 yards of any occupied dwelling house, residence, or other building or any barn or other outbuilding used in connection therewith. The 150-yard area is a "safety zone."
(b) It is unlawful for any person to intentionally discharge any firearm or release any arrow or crossbow bolt over or across any public road or way open to the public, in an unsafe manner.


So, as long as you have a safe backstop to keep you from shooting into an unsafe area or across a road, you should be perfectly legal to sit on your back porch and target shoot. You could even legally hunt from your back porch.

Decoligny
07-18-2009, 2:26 PM
[I] cannot seem to find anything on the internet for this area.

one could aways just call the sherrifs office ehh?

And the sheriff's office will just tell you whatever they feel like telling you. They will NOT necessarily tell you what the law actually says.

nosmatt
07-18-2009, 2:27 PM
NEVER believe what cops tell you without first verifying the information.

There is nothing in the Penal Code that says you have to be 1 mile away from any freeway, road, or even building.

Penal Code PC374c makes it illegal to shoot on or across any public road.

Fish & Game Regulation 3004. (a) It is unlawful for any person, other than the owner, person in possession of the premises, or a person having the express permission of the owner or person in possession of the premises, to hunt or to discharge while hunting, any firearm or other deadly weapon within 150 yards of any occupied dwelling house, residence, or other building or any barn or other outbuilding used in connection therewith. The 150-yard area is a "safety zone."
(b) It is unlawful for any person to intentionally discharge any firearm or release any arrow or crossbow bolt over or across any public road or way open to the public, in an unsafe manner.


So, as long as you have a safe backstop to keep you from shooting into an unsafe area or across a road, you should be perfectly legal to sit on your back porch and target shoot.

Decoligny, thank you. this is exactly what i was looking for.

donstarr
07-18-2009, 2:39 PM
You probably want to check county ordinances... years ago, when I wanted to shoot in Ventura County on a big chunk of private land in an unincorporated part of the county, I found, by actually reviewing (and printing out!) the ordinances on microfilm at the library, that it was OK as long as I was (paraphrasing here) "at least 300 yards from any dwelling or any structure used in conjunction with a dwelling".

Just for fun, I just looked it up for Ventura County... The above is essentially correct, but there's an exception if you have the permission of the owner of the building. If you were in an unincorporated part of Ventura County with no neighbors nearby (i.e. within 300 yards), you could shoot from your back porch.

Now, if you happened to be in San Luis Obispo County, there are no such "distance from dwelling" restrictions. You just cannot shoot toward a highway or public place.

I'm getting county ordinance info from: http://www.municode.com/Resources/code_list.asp?stateID=5

Scarecrow Repair
07-18-2009, 7:52 PM
I have 16 acres. Near as I can tell by Google Earth, the nearest neighbors are 1000 feet away. Next closest is down the road with a 20 acre parcel between us.

Backstop from my front door is a good steep hill 100 feet away. Gully to the west, my property, has some scuba tanks hanging 240 feet away.

If I am going to do lots of shooting, if friends want to bang away like crazy, I go elsewhere. But sighting in or just shooting a few to take a break, I shoot here all the time. I don't shoot before 9am, I don't shoot when it gets middling dark, I try to use common sense. I also hear gunfire every day when I am around, some days more than others, but not always in the winter.

The 1000 foot neighbor (I call him Noisome) came up one day when I and friends were shooting. He said the big guns were scaring his dogs, and would I mind calling before I shot them? Well, I figure if he lives up here and has dogs afraid of guns, he is doing something wrong. Plus, if they run away, he is violating the county virtual leash law. But what the heck, I agree.

The agreement soon fell apart. If he didn't answer the phone, he complained that I didn't leave a message and wait for a callback (how long should I wait?). When I fired 22s, he complained (if I saw a ground squirrel, was I supposed to tell th eground squirrel to hang around, call, leave a message, and wait -- hwo long? -- for a callback? I don't think so!) and so I eventually wrote him a letter saying the agreement was off because he had unilaterally changed it. Tough titties.

He has since retaliated by twice calling the sheriff's with complaints of full auto gunfire. First time, three squad cars (on this dirt road!) showed up, and I was just coming around the deck with a Mauser. They made it clear they were NOT there on a noise complaint or to tell me to stop shooting, it was my property, I had every right to shoot, but they had to investigate. I told them of the agreement and letter and they had a talk with him after.

Second time, the local resident deputy showed up a couple of hours afterwards, same message, plus he said he had reviewed the history file, and reckoned it was just a grumpy old man.

I have since found from friends that his dogs are deaf as a post. Friends who were at his house when I fired Mausers and Garands and ARs said the dogs didn't even perk up their ears. (They sent text messages saying Do It Again, Sounds Good. :-)

The moral of the story is that you may get complaints, so you need to know your rights for your area, and need to stand your ground if the deputies show up. It might be worthwhile telling your neighbors, finding out what they think of it, and you should definitely be cautious about that 350 foot neighbor, sounds a bit close for some areas. The deputies here seem to know the rules well enough. You might try yours; if you see one in a store or parked, stop and say hello and ask.

RandyD
07-18-2009, 8:13 PM
Check the county codes and write the sheriff a letter asking him to confirm in writing the legality of shooting on your property. That letter from the sheriff confirming that you can shoot on your property would trump any deputy sheriff from telling you otherwise.

1923mack
07-18-2009, 8:30 PM
Like other have said, each county and most cities have their own rules. Check with your County rules and then you should be good to go.

tombinghamthegreat
07-18-2009, 8:31 PM
Check the county codes and write the sheriff a letter asking him to confirm in writing the legality of shooting on your property. That letter from the sheriff confirming that you can shoot on your property would trump any deputy sheriff from telling you otherwise.

Umm writing the police dept is a bad idea because one they do not understand the law and they can give out the wrong answer. If there is no county or state codes then just make a back stop and shoot.

CSDGuy
07-18-2009, 8:40 PM
If you're in unincorporated county land, check the county codes for any description of a "restricted shooting district" or something along those lines. If you find one, get out a map and trace the outline of what is described. If you're INSIDE that area, you're not allowed to shoot unless it's for defensive purposes or you have a permit for shooting. If you're OUTSIDE that area... just make sure you have a good backstop and you're not otherwise violating any CVC, PC, or F&G codes... DEFINITELY no shooting ACROSS any roads...

nosmatt
07-18-2009, 8:56 PM
idea for a good backstop?

the hill i was going to use will pose some other issues, now i have a good area picked out, but there are tons of massive pines/cedars behind, i do not want to kill the trees.

thanks

Blackhawk556
07-18-2009, 9:19 PM
hey nosmatt, if you ever need a shooting buddy let me know I live in madera :rolleyes::gunsmilie:

Turo
07-18-2009, 9:19 PM
idea for a good backstop?

the hill i was going to use will pose some other issues, now i have a good area picked out, but there are tons of massive pines/cedars behind, i do not want to kill the trees.

thanks

Unless you've got one of these, I wouldn't worry about killing any trees :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QC8jnSaCqxY

tombinghamthegreat
07-18-2009, 9:23 PM
idea for a good backstop?

A dirt hill or a bunch of sand bags? I mean if the military used it stop bullets in battle it should work for target practice.

http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot7.htm

Meplat
07-18-2009, 10:07 PM
idea for a good backstop?

the hill i was going to use will pose some other issues, now i have a good area picked out, but there are tons of massive pines/cedars behind, i do not want to kill the trees.

thanks

It would take one hell of a lot of hits to kill a tree. Don't worry about it.

packnrat
07-19-2009, 8:09 AM
In my county all that you need (other than living in town) is land over 5 acres.

But always pay heed to "other" laws.

nosmatt
07-19-2009, 8:58 AM
i looked up the muni codes, only restriction is.... well, here, read for yourselves.
and btw, i do not live in these areas..

[i] A. "Firearm" means and includes pistols, rifles, shotguns, pellet guns, BB guns and all other instruments used in the propulsion of shot, shell, or bullets by the action of gunpowder exploded within it.
B. "Discharge" means to shoot.
C. "Prohibited area" means and includes all of the following:
1. The Bass Lake Area. This area includes that area designated as Bass Lake and within one thousand feet of the land perimeter measured from the high water mark thereof;
2. Sierra Lakes Tracts I and II. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Sierra Lakes Tracts I and II as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 6 of Maps on page 140 and Volume 8 of Maps on pages 90 and 91;
3. Goldside Estates Units 1, 2, and 3. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Goldside Estates Units 1, 2 and 3 as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 18 of Maps on pages 33 and 34, Volume 22 of Maps on pages 118 and 119, and Volume 25 of Maps on pages 14 and 15;
4. Griffin Park. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Griffin Park as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 29 of Maps on pages 175 and 176;
5. Hidden Lakes Estates No. 1 and 2. This area includes all territory lying within the boundaries of Hidden Lakes Estates Nos. 1 and 2 as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 7 of Maps on page 72, and Volume 9 of Maps on page 121;
6. The Thornberry Area. This area includes all that territory bounded by Highway 41 on the west, Road 420 on the north, Mudge Ranch Road on the east and the National Forest Boundary on the south;
7. The Madera Ranchos Area. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Madera Ranchos Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 7 of Maps on pages 89--93 and 145--148, Volume 8 of Maps on pages 58--63, 64--65 and 97--105, and Volume 9 of Maps on pages 64--71;
8. The Bonadelle Ranchos Areas. These areas include all that territory lying within the boundaries of Bonadelle Ranchos, and Bonadelle Ranchos Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 7 of Maps on pages 102--116 and 139--143, Volume 9 of Maps on pages 1--9 and 126, Volume 8 of Maps on pages 140--144, Volume 10 of Maps on pages 46--61, 112 and 129--135, Volume 11 of Maps on pages 120--135 and 96--119;
9. The Rolling Hills Area. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Rolling Hills Nos. 1, 2, 3 and 4 as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 8 of Maps on pages 6--7, 53--54, and 70--71, and Volume 9 of Maps on pages 27--28;
10. Redwood Creek. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Redwood Creek as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 6 of Maps on pages 88 and 89;
11. Ponderosa Acres. This area includes all territory lying within the boundaries of Ponderosa Acres as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 7 of Maps on pages 32--35;
12. Yosemite Lakes Park. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Yosemite Lakes Park as shown on those subdivision maps recorded at Volume 16 of Maps on pages 37--70, a portion of which was amended and rerecorded at Volume 23 of Maps on pages 1 and 2;
13. Valley Lake Ranchos. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Valley Lake Ranchos as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 11 of Maps on pages 30--63 inclusive, and in addition includes the bed and banks of Dry Creek between Roads 28 1/2 and 30;
14. Lake Madera Country Estates. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Lake Madera Country Estates as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 10 of Maps on pages 84--104 inclusive;
15. Indian Lakes Estates. This area includes all that territory lying within the boundaries of Indian Lakes Estates as shown on the subdivision map recorded at Volume 13 of Maps on pages 1-19, inclusive.
(Ord. 481E 1, 1993; Ord. 481D 1, 1992; Ord. 481C 1, 1992; Ord. 481-B 1(part), 1991: Ord. 481-A 1, 1986: Ord. 481 1(part), 1984).

9.94.030 Discharge of firearms prohibited.
No person shall discharge any firearms within a prohibited area or from, on, or into any roadway or highway open to the public, whether within or without a prohibited area, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.
(Ord. 481-B 1(part), 1991: Ord. 481 1(part), 1984). [i/]