FWP statement on corner crossing in Montana raises public land access advocates' hackles

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks’ deputy director has raised the hackles of some Montana land access advocates.

A recent federal court ruling in Wyoming regarding public access at the corners where a checkerboard of public and private parcels meet has prompted questions about how the ruling may apply in Montana, an FWP spokesman said. As a result, on Thursday the department issued a short press release.

“Corner crossing remains unlawful in Montana, and Montanans should continue to obtain permission from the adjoining landowners before crossing corners from one piece of public land to another,” Dustin Temple, FWP deputy director, said in the release. “Wardens will continue to report corner crossing cases to local county attorneys to exercise their prosecutorial discretion.”

Billings attorney Jake Schwaller disagreed with Temple’s characterization.

“Saying it is unlawful is an incorrect statement,” said the Eastern Montana conservation leader for the Montana Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers.

Read more from the Billings Gazette here...


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