Are RVers about to lose their freedom to camp on public lands

October 31, 2014 by Bob Difley ·

Special interests are increasing the pressure on the federal government to turn over to the states public lands that fall within their bouondaries. So far these efforts have failed, as they should. As an RVer and boondocker, I have a particular intererst our public lands and have been an advocate of thier use by RVers for camping and boondocking for many years. Even my nickname, “boondockbob,” comes from my love of camping on the millions of wide open acres of public lands managed by the National Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
But if the special interests that are trying to transfer these public lands out of the American citizens’ hands and into the coffers of opportunistic politicians in the states, imagine what could be the ramifications of what would follow. First, the states would have to start coughing up the money required to manage these lands. The federal wildlife management agencies spent almost $4 billion in 2014 alone to manage just the wildlife refuges. And isn’t the enjoyment of our beaautiful and scenic public lands the very reason why many of us have chosen the RV lifestyle?
Do you think the states, in the current political climate, are going to suggest raising taxes to manage these lands? Of course not. So what will they do? The only possible option is to start leasing or selling the public lands (which are our lands) to the highest bidder, whether it be amusment part developers, hotel chains, mining and exploration companies, or any other organization whose main interest is extracting what they can take from the land and rewarding their shareholders, and not what they can do to preserve the land for its current uses – camping, hiking, boondocking, paddling, hunting, and other outdoor recreation opportunities.
That is not what I want to happen to our public lands that we pay taxes on to keep them out of private hands. I don’t want to see locked gates going up across forest service roads and “No Trespassing” signs appearing on all the dirt roads I like to explore and camp on. The states will be forced to sell off the best of our public lands leaving the taxpayers to foot the bill for what is left. And can you be sure where all that money will go when these lands are sold or leased?
There couldn’t be any possible benefit to RVers in turning public lands over to the states, unless you are a major shareholder of the corporations that will come in like the robber barons of the old railroad expansion days and reap the spoils of the taxpayers’ land. But can we do anything about it? We can, but it will take our diligence to watch the manipulations laid on us by those who wish to benefit at our expense. Watch for the legislation they put out and vote against it – loudly. It is your land and you have the right to demand – yes, demand – that it remain out of state politicians’ hands.

Boondocking in Colorado's national forests

Personal and financial interests are increasing the pressure on the federal government to turn over to the states public lands that fall within their boundaries. So far these efforts have failed, as they should. As an RVer and boondocker, I have a particular interest in our public lands and have been an advocate of their use by RVers for camping and boondocking for many years. Even my nickname, “boondockbob,” comes from my love of camping on the millions of wide open acres of public lands managed by the National Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

But if the special interests that are trying to transfer these public lands out of the American citizens’ hands and into the coffers of opportunistic politicians in the states, imagine what could be the ramifications of what would follow. First, the states would have to start coughing up the money required to manage these lands. The federal wildlife management agencies spent almost $4 billion in 2014 alone to manage just the wildlife refuges.

Do you think the states, with the current political climate, are going to suggest raising taxes to manage these lands? Of course not. So what will they do? The only possible option is to start leasing or selling the public lands (which are our lands) to the highest bidder, whether it be amusement part developers, hotel chains, mining and exploration companies, or any other organization whose main interest is extracting what they can take from the land and rewarding their shareholders, and not what they can do to preserve the land for all Americans and for current low-revenue producing uses such as camping, hiking, boondocking, paddling, hunting, and other outdoor recreation opportunities.

That is not what I want to happen to our public lands that we pay taxes on to keep them out of private hands. I don’t want to see locked gates going up across forest service roads and “No Trespassing” signs appearing on all the dirt roads I like to explore and camp on. And isn’t the enjoyment of our beaautiful and scenic public lands the very reason why many of us have chosen the RV lifestyle?

That’s not all. The states will be forced to sell off the most attractive of our public lands, those where private parties can extract the most revenue, leaving the taxpayers to foot the bill for what is left. And will you be comfortable with where all that money will go when these lands are sold or leased?

There couldn’t be any possible benefit to RVers in turning public lands over to the states, unless you are a major shareholder of the corporations that will come in like the robber barons of the old railroad expansion days and reap the spoils of the taxpayers’ land. But can we do anything about it? We can, but it will take our diligence to scrutinize the politicians and special interests that will attempt to manipulate us for personal or corporate benefit at our expense. Watch for the legislation they put out and vote against it – loudly. It is your land and you have the right to demand – yes, demand – that it remain out of state politicians’ hands.

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About smokeycamping

Well let's see have lived in NY for my whole life, have always loved the outdoors (as long as it is warm out) have always hated the cold, and like a dummy have stayed in NY. But now with my second try my wife, we have been camping now for well over 25 yrs. We currently own a 2010 Cedar creek silverback 35TS and can not wait to get out on the highways and see this great country we all call home. Hope to see every National park before my medical issue becomes too bad to travel. I love my African gray parrot (she is my baby) and have two dogs at the time brother and sister mutts, but love them all the same. Have always been a big Nascar fan, love computers (have a number of certificates to build and work on them) am trying to learn photography, enjoy light hiking, being with good friends and folks. country music, pop music and just being outdoors. So I hope someday to meet some of the great people who like what I like and post out there in some great campground somewhere in the country, till then I will keep posting and I hope you keep liking.

Posted on November 2, 2014, in The world as i see it as a camper and who loves his country and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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