Judge Hands Blaine County, Silver Creek Outfitters Win In Public Access Lawsuit

Photo: Dorene MacCoy, USGS Idaho Water Science Center

A district judge gave Blaine County a favorable decision in a public access lawsuit against a Hailey homeowners association earlier this month. Some lawyers think the decision has broader implications for public lands access in Idaho.

The main question was whether an easement that gives the public access to the Big Wood River along a private road in a subdivision also includes the right for visitors to park along the road.

Though people had used this access point north of Hailey for fishing, kayaking, and horseback riding for many years, the Flying Heart Ranch homeowners association began obstructing it last year by putting up ‘No Parking’ signs and towing at least one car.

After back and forth negotiations and animated public hearings, Blaine County filed a complaint last fall. Later, Silver Creek Outfitters, a Ketchum-based fly-fishing apparel and guide company, joined the county in the lawsuit.

LINK (via: Boise State Public Radio)

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