Beach access question....

Bradley Miller

Dances with fish
#1
Ok, so I had a half a day to go fishing yesterday and thought I would give SRC fishing a shot since I've never done that and it looks pretty amazing sooooooo.....I drove up and down hood canal looking for a likely looking place to get on the beach, with no luck. Private property signs, no trespassing signs, fences, etc. all were pretty discouraging. Unknowns regarding public right of way, signs warning of 'felony trespass', and an informative chat with a helpful fisheries dude ( at the Hoodsport hatchery) are all ingredients in the recipe of ' how the heck to you fish without a boat?' question, at least for me. I'm not interested in breaking any rules or laws, but I am interested in my right to access. Help.
(Side note: I would love a good excuse to buy a little pontoon boat if that helps me solve the problem....)
:)
 

Greg Armstrong

OldRodsHaveMoreFun
#4
You can also check for DNR lands.

A boat is a definite help though, because a lot of the public beaches are only accessible by water - go for it!
 

Bradley Miller

Dances with fish
#5
You can also check for DNR lands.

A boat is a definite help though, because a lot of the public beaches are only accessible by water - go for it!
One of the things the Fisheries guy told me was that private tidelands are only private if you are touching the beach: so theoretically, you could be floating on a private beach but not trespassing; just as long as you don't stand up. I'm kind of thinking that if you park on the side of the road, you're in the public right of way..... the trick seems to be getting from your car to the water. Hmmm.......
 
#6
One of the things the Fisheries guy told me was that private tidelands are only private if you are touching the beach:
Am I correct to think that below the mean high-water mark on a puget sound beach is public? I thought that if the location was boat-navigable (at high tide,) then it was not private...
I could be way off-base here, though.
 

Bradley Miller

Dances with fish
#7
Am I correct to think that below the mean high-water mark on a puget sound beach is public? I thought that if the location was boat-navigable (at high tide,) then it was not private...
I could be way off-base here, though.
I've no idea! However, if you're not in a boat, then it seems like what the fisheries guy said is reasonable. I am starting to think I need to drive to Olympia and try to get someone from F/W to sit down with me and fill in the 'black hole' of ignorance I seem to be in. :)
 

Stonefish

Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater
#8
#10
Am I correct to think that below the mean high-water mark on a puget sound beach is public? I thought that if the location was boat-navigable (at high tide,) then it was not private...
I could be way off-base here, though.
Negative. It varies from property to property in Washington, but some folks (like me) own their tidelands down to mean low tide or extreme low tide (again, varies from property to property). I let folks walk on my beach and fish, but not take crabs or shellfish. You may float in the water above the tidelands and fish without the landowner's consent, but can't take crabs or shellfish off the bottom without the landowner's consent. Of course, Native Americans have treaty rights that allow them to take one-half of the naturally occurring (not planted) shellfish on private tidelands, but have to go through some hoops to do so.
 

Tony

Left handed Gemini.
#14
This comes up almost yearly and has been discussed in depth the laws in Wa. are convoluted at best do a search on the web and make your own decisions on what you are willing to do
Tony
 

Pat Lat

Mad Flyentist
#15
I guess the simplest answer is that some water front owners pay taxes on the tidelands as part of their property, usually if there is a dock, oyster or clam pens or the property is adjacent to a public park the area is usually private, otherwise most people dont bother paying the taxes for the tidelands. Even if there are signs up that could just mean that the person wants to scare people off.
I usually just wade in and play dumb if they come out and throw a hissy fit.

Besides, you cant own the water maaaan, its gods water. -super troopers