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View Full Version : School Me, shooting on private land, unincorprated land.


meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 9:06 PM
Ok,
recently I moved back into the country, where I belong. However, the idea dawned on me that I might be able to shoot on my property.

Before I even broach the topic to those about me I want to fully understand the laws, regulations, attitudes, gotcha's etc.

So to help let me describe the location.

We are on about 10 acres located in unincorporated area of butte county. We are surrounded on three sides by working orchards. The nearest domicile other than ours is 100ft or more to the north and south side of the property. The rear (east) of the property is pure commercial orchard that runs for at least 1000 yards into a local creek then beyond that is even more working orchard.

The idea would be to put up a large berm if we did this on the eastern property line. This, however, is California, *sigh* which means reason and rationality go out the window. So, school me...

Vipersx911
04-22-2011, 9:15 PM
Ok,
recently I moved back into the country, where I belong. However, the idea dawned on me that I might be able to shoot on my property.

Before I even broach the topic to those about me I want to fully understand the laws, regulations, attitudes, gotcha's etc.

So to help let me describe the location.

We are on about 10 acres located in unincorporated area of butte county. We are surrounded on three sides by working orchards. The nearest domicile other than ours is 100ft or more to the north and south side of the property. The rear (east) of the property is pure commercial orchard that runs for at least 1000 yards into a local creek then beyond that is even more working orchard.

The idea would be to put up a large berm if we did this on the eastern property line. This, however, is California, *sigh* which means reason and rationality go out the window. So, school me...

To the letter of the law and someone else may have better insight on this, but unincorporated land should be alright, make sure of course everything is legal. No shooting at dwellings either occupied or unoccupied as well as vehicles anything of that nature. How close is the nearest building? what is the longest distance you can shoot that is on your property?

Cokebottle
04-22-2011, 9:15 PM
Should be good to go, but check your county codes for local restrictions.

Librarian
04-22-2011, 9:18 PM
First place to go is the ordinances (http://library.municode.com/index.aspx?clientId=16065&stateId=5&stateName=California&customBanner=16065.jpg&imageclass=L&cl=16065.txt) for Butte County: doesn't seem to be anything.

Then, contact the County (http://www.buttecounty.net/) - probably zoning folks.

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 9:21 PM
To the letter of the law and someone else may have better insight on this, but unincorporated land should be alright, make sure of course everything is legal. No shooting at dwellings either occupied or unoccupied as well as vehicles anything of that nature. How close is the nearest building? what is the longest distance you can shoot that is on your property?

Already said the closest structures are over 100ft from the north and south property boundaries, most are over 400ft. On the property itself, we would have about 150ft of range lane with a distance of about 100ft to the nearest perm. structure (a stable).

The real core concerns for me are: The "working" Orchards (risk to people working there) and flighty neighbors. I heard one gunshot today, but that was it some distance off. I am reminded of what happened to a certain gentleman in SLO when I think of this and am arguably very restrained when it comes to this idea. If I could legally use silencers it wouldn't worry so much.

The Librarian is an awesome man. No specific restrictions found in the butte county municipal code listed. Zoning listed wineries but nothing on firearms discharge. Parks and Recreation restricts discharge in all parks and no hunting.

So that leaves... the neighbors.... >.<

Cokebottle
04-22-2011, 9:31 PM
Head off the neighbors at the pass by chumming up to the local deputies and invite them over for an afternoon of shooting for your range's "grand opening". ;)

The Geologist
04-22-2011, 9:31 PM
Check this out. This guy was doing what you are planning on doing legally

http://kccn.tv/slo_sheriff_take_guns.cfm

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 9:35 PM
Check this out. This guy was doing what you are planning on doing legally

http://kccn.tv/slo_sheriff_take_guns.cfm

Yup, I am very familiar with that story. That's the asking here and such. I have been paranoid ever since hearing about that a while back.

llamatrnr
04-22-2011, 10:03 PM
Check this out. This guy was doing what you are planning on doing legally

http://kccn.tv/slo_sheriff_take_guns.cfm


Any updates on this? (Hart)

jeffsenpai
04-22-2011, 10:14 PM
Here is the CA fish and game code that may limit your shooting. Are you target shooting, or hunting? that is the key as you read this law:

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."

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 10:19 PM
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

Is an interesting part though of 3004 (a) It would seem that the owner is exempt from the 150 yard rule?

jeffsenpai
04-22-2011, 10:29 PM
Yeah it seems like that is the idea. As long as you own (or have permission) any of the buildings in that "safety zone", ALL shooting is good to go. According to the wording, if your not "hunting", the safety zone doesn't apply at all.

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 10:32 PM
That is absolutely fascinating. So why so few limitations on target shooting yet so few do it and then there is the SLO incident?

Ubermcoupe
04-22-2011, 10:37 PM
Build a BIG berm and have fun! :D

Dutch3
04-22-2011, 10:56 PM
Interesting. The 150-yard rule is only in the F&G code and applies only to hunting?

I am in a similar situation with neighbors and working orchards. Years ago, there were few neighbors and open fields all around. Now there are neighbors close by.

If I were to construct a suitable backstop (berm) for a 25-yard pistol range and I am not hunting, would my neighbors have justification for complaint (in unincorporated Butte County)?

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 11:00 PM
If we could shoot without the trip to the pits would be fun and nice.

jeffsenpai
04-22-2011, 11:00 PM
The Fish and Game code is just one of the laws to be aware of. Know all county ordinances that may apply in your area. Maybe even check into things such as noise ordinances and such.

Of course, expect Law Enforcement to be entirely clueless about the law. I would have all applicable laws printed out and ready to go if you decide to do this.

Dutch3
04-22-2011, 11:05 PM
Now wondering how much fill would be required to build a 6' high x 100' wide berm...

meaty-btz
04-22-2011, 11:05 PM
Nothing in butte county municode. So good there.

Dutch3
04-22-2011, 11:20 PM
Regarding noise, most of my neighbors play loud circus music at random hours. I don't think it likely they would notice some small caliber shooting.

Then again, you never know.

Mstrty
04-22-2011, 11:28 PM
Thread jack on.....

You said Butte. Made me want to plug our private range. Come on out and play if you ever have time. North Valley Shooters Association (http://www.nvsa.info)

Thread jack off......

ColdDeadHands1
04-22-2011, 11:43 PM
Check here, your County Assessors office. Type in your parcel information:

http://www.buttecounty.net/Assessor/Parcel%20Search.aspx

Some counties have GIS maps with various layers you can turn on or off like flood zones, zoning, earthquake zones, no shoot zones, etc.

See if there is anything regarding "no shoot zones" in Butte County and specifically whether or not your parcel is in it.

Dutch3
04-23-2011, 5:57 AM
Check here, your County Assessors office. Type in your parcel information:

http://www.buttecounty.net/Assessor/Parcel%20Search.aspx

Some counties have GIS maps with various layers you can turn on or off like flood zones, zoning, earthquake zones, no shoot zones, etc.

See if there is anything regarding "no shoot zones" in Butte County and specifically whether or not your parcel is in it.

That link delivers static maps. The layered GIS maps are here:

http://www.buttecounty.net/Assessor/Maps.aspx

VaderSpade
04-23-2011, 8:42 AM
I think courtesy for the neighbors should be considered. I had a neighbor just below my property that had a weekend cabin on 20 acres. Every 3 day weekend (when us full timers want to relax) this guy his 4 grown sons and their families would come up and shoot from daylight until WELL after dark, sometimes until 2:00 or 3:00am (I know 10:00pm is the law but who wants to call the cops at 2:00am?). I wish I had the money these guys spent on ammo. The first time I checked out their setup I found MY property was their backstop which of course directs ALL the sound to my house, not to mention the lead they were depositing. I told them I would be doing some clearing along the property line (which I was) and ask that they not use my property as a backstop, and to please clean up 20 years of glass and cans left on my property. They cleaned things up and put in a lighted night silhouette range.
It should be noted that we have a great shooting range (out to 200 yards) just a half mile away at an abandoned gravel pit with high wall that muffles the sound. Everybody that lives here full time shoots on their property from time to time, BUT we have all agreed (Thanks mostly to the weekend guys) to do most of our shooting at the gravel pit. We get together for a few organized shoots every year, the biggest of which is Christmas day where we have about 100 shooters.
I have 50 acres with timberland on three sides and I limit my shooting to .22 caliber near the timberland. Everything else I take to the gravel pit.

All that being said, I think some shooting on one’s own property SHOULD be done just to keep the universe aligned (use it or lose it) BUT keep the neighbors in mind.

meaty-btz
04-23-2011, 9:37 AM
Zone is AG-20 (20 acre minimum) Agriculture.
100 year flood zone.
No restrictions.

That is some good info. All surrounding parcels for about 2 miles are AG-20.

I would never dream of being a noise nuisance. That just isn't my style, I am a quite person who like quiet and quiet areas. Wish california didn't have stupid suppressor laws.

Why have one? So I am not a dick to those near me while shooting.....

tileguy
04-23-2011, 10:22 AM
good idea meaty-btz. i have a 30 acre olive ranch i might consider doing something like this. the bottom section has a seasonal creek with a 8 to 12 ft tall bank that could be a natural backstop and the the hill side slopes up at least another 50 ft in elevation closest house is at least 2 to 3 hunrded yards away. now you got me thinking. maybe a bbq range day at the ranch.

smokeysbandit
04-23-2011, 10:35 AM
Thread jack on.....

You said Butte. Made me want to plug our private range. Come on out and play if you ever have time. North Valley Shooters Association (http://www.nvsa.info)

Thread jack off......


Hehe, Jack off. Sig worthy.

SilentPea
04-23-2011, 10:52 AM
I would never dream of being a noise nuisance. That just isn't my style, I am a quite person who like quiet and quiet areas. Wish california didn't have stupid suppressor laws.

You could always build a shooting tube style setup. Somthing like this: http://www.louisianasportsman.com/details.php?id=181

I've seen a ton of variations on the basic concept. Some people partially fill their tubes with expanding foam, some use big rubber curtain/wipes. The basic idea is a giant non-moveable supressor (to avoid stupid laws about firearm attachments) that reduces the sound signature of your shooting and also redirects it in away from your neighbors.

The Shadow
04-23-2011, 2:50 PM
Here's something that might be worth looking at.

http://www.hss.energy.gov/SecPolicy/pfs/Range_Design_Criteria.pdf

If it's good enough for the department of energy, why not use it ?

Dutch3
04-23-2011, 8:33 PM
good idea meaty-btz. i have a 30 acre olive ranch i might consider doing something like this. the bottom section has a seasonal creek with a 8 to 12 ft tall bank that could be a natural backstop and the the hill side slopes up at least another 50 ft in elevation closest house is at least 2 to 3 hunrded yards away. now you got me thinking. maybe a bbq range day at the ranch.

tileguy, I will volunteer to help set up/cook/clean up, whatever, if you decide to do this.

Cokebottle
04-23-2011, 8:44 PM
good idea meaty-btz. i have a 30 acre olive ranch i might consider doing something like this. the bottom section has a seasonal creek with a 8 to 12 ft tall bank that could be a natural backstop and the the hill side slopes up at least another 50 ft in elevation closest house is at least 2 to 3 hunrded yards away. now you got me thinking. maybe a bbq range day at the ranch.
Careful with the creek. Not sure how it would apply on private property, but you can't shoot across a road or water on BLM/unincorporated county land.

I would assume that it's to protect anyone that may be traveling the road/waterway, so if the creek is too small to be navigable, you should be okay... but it's worth it to verify with the local LE.

meaty-btz
04-30-2011, 6:15 PM
Just got the OK. In the coming months I will be setting up a backstop.

Everything is in order.

I am sooo excited. Hell I could legally go out and crank off some rounds right now but I am one of those.. do it right and play nice folks.... so backstop first. Going to use dirt with some sand-bags.