07-23-2012, 07:46 PM
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It looks like the person above sort of beat me to it...but I was going to play devil's advocate for some of you who don't give a second thought about threatening/getting the law involved in these cases. Now, I have HIGH respect for people's property and understand that people have every right to be upset. I have twice been the "bad guy" though due to not having anyone to teach me the trails in my area. The first time I was lost in the woods with my horse and could not find my way back out. I allowed the horse to find her way and she did get me home, but took me right through someone's property and they were not happy, BUT they were very understanding and listened to my explanation and it didn't happen again, so it was water under the bridge. The other case was not so simple. I REALLY learned my lesson this time. I called a property owner about a trail, described it, they said yes it's theirs, yes its posted, yes you can ride on it....awesome! Unfortunately, there was a trail that continued off of it, that had the same signs, looked the same, etc, and belonged to someone else. I thought it was the same trail set, same owner, permission already set to go until I had a very scary encounter with two drunk men blocking the trail, yelling at me and demanding all my personal information. They finally backed off after posturing at me and threatening me for a good half hour. They then handed me a business card for the land owner(wait...you just threatened me and trapped me on someone else's land???). Anyway, I tried to do the right thing and call the land owner to apologize, explain the mistake, and promise it wouldn't happen again. He then used my number to report me to authorities, and gave them a picture of me on his property and tried to have me arrested. Thank goodness the authorities did their job and warned me, understood that it was a simple misunderstanding, but told me I was okay as long as I was never seen on his land again. ANYWAY...not saying it was right that I was on his land, because it wasn't. Just saying that mistakes do happen, trails can be very confusing sometimes, especially in heavily wooded areas that aren't well marked. I lost a lot of sleep over my mistake and felt it was taken way too far. I am going to try to obtain a map of property lines because this was just absolutely crazy. I thought I was pretty careful about asking permission, but obviously not careful enough!! Please don't subject other well-intentioned people to this kind of treatment. I would NEVER intentionally go on someone's land that I wasn't wanted on...and I was an inch away from facing trespassing charges.