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Dave G

Checking Blm Mining Claims To Avoid Trespass

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I'm sure I read an article in ICMJ about how to "suss-out" the BLM website to make sure you aren't on someone else's claim, but no amount of searches has been successful. I'm aware of the markers and have belonged to a number of mining clubs (canceled due to moving north to Oregon). I'm primarily a metal detector looking to shoot nuggets in California, Oregon, Nevada and Arizona.

 

I know how to access the BLM website, but understanding how to check claim status to avoid trespass escapes me... (tried BLM "help page", but got lost...   :)

 

Thanks,

 

Dave

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Start here and make sure to read all the tutorials and help guides. Then search the respective state you wish to prospect in for land status maps and legal descriptions so you know what to enter into the LR2000 system.

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Appreciate the reply/link, but I'd gotten to the "introduction page" and the comment on the BLM website (disclaimer?) says it all... With all the mapping grids available, plus a good, collating, software program & using a government computer this could be made easier for the recreational prospector.

 

 

"LR2000 is not simple, but it is very powerful. Please read the Report Summaries and the

Report User Guide on LR2000 before you run a report."

 

I guess the old saying "nothing good ever came easy" is the word of the day... (Back to school)


                

            

        

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BLM has discontinued (a cost cutting measure) the interactive mapping software tool Geocommunicator. Geocommunicator was a reasonable reference because the issue of trespass actually begins with who "owns" the land you are planning to detect. The ownership could be private or state or any one of a number of other possible owners (not just BLM). Much of the lands are mixed estate, i.e. Federal minerals and State surface. smile

 

What remains of LR2000 is a "database". BLM maintains an "internal" version of the database. The one we have access to via internet is the "public" version. What that means is the public version is often inaccurate and always 6 months to one year out of date. The database isn't updated in "real time". It's updated in "government time" which involves manual entry into the database by BLM clerks as they are assigned to enter the last six months worth of over-the-counter transactions.

 

The lack of current, up-to-date information can lead to confusion on the status of BLM lands. My personal opinion is that there are entities that have an interest in keeping it that way. Many users of the public lands will not risk mineral entry into areas that involve uncertainty of mining claim status. So, it indirectly keeps many users out of the field.

 

To add further to the confusion, BLM has changed the rules. Used to be that all Affidavits of Annual Labor were filed at the county recorder and BLM. Now, the BLM filing is mandatory and the county filing is optional. So, the county recorder is no longer a certain point of recordation for Annual Labor.

 

- Geowizard

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But all Location Notices must be filed with the County Recorder in the county where the claim is located.  Many County Recorders have an online searchable database these days with more adding that feature as demand warrants.  It does take time to learn to navigate the LR2000 but it's what you have to do to obtain the info needed.  The BLM is slooooooow to update the LR2000 especially now during the fee and filing season.  So cross checking with the county recorder is necessary to find the latest claim filings in a county you may be interested in detecting.  In Arizona the AZLand.gov site has a Parcel Viewer feature that shows land ownership.  As stated before it is difficult to determine land status but it can be done with a lot of work.  Probably why clubs are so popular.
 
Clay and Ruby have a good tutorial on their site for the LR2000: http://www.minerdiggins.com/Ripple/rc/read/tuts/LR2000F0.html

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Very good info.... thanks to all posting help here. I can see it's a swamp of alligators, but the important thing is trying to show due-diligence goes a long way to mending broken fences.

 

I tip my hat to those offering advice..!

 

Dave G

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"To add further to the confusion, BLM has changed the rules. Used to be
that all Affidavits of Annual Labor were filed at the county recorder
and BLM. Now, the BLM filing is mandatory and the county filing is
optional. So, the county recorder is no longer a certain point of
recordation for Annual Labor.:

 

Where did you see this Geo! I hadn't see this. I think I'll continue filing mine anyway.

Leonard

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The LR2000 and the geocommunicator are unrelated, this is a common misunderstanding. The LR2000 is a database management system (DBMS). The geocommunicator is a Web Mapping Service (WMS). Although at one time they seemed to have a relationship that was due to manhours spent inputting links into the geocommunicator. The LR2000 has never been a mapping system. The geocommunicator has never been a Database Management System. Apples and Oranges.

The LR2000 is always out of date and often inaccurate. It is only as timely as the input from BLM employees is. It is only as accurate as the input from BLM employees is. The common factor here is the lack of training and initiative on the part of BLM employees. There is nothing inherently wrong with the LR2000 DBMS, it's perfectly capable of doing the tasks that it was designed for.

The LR2000 is difficult to navigate. It was designed to handle all of the records for all land status, leasing, grazing and mining claims in the lower 48. It was not designed for easy use by miners to study mining claims status.

We have tried through tutorials (like the one linked above) and many many personal contacts to help miners educate themselves on the use of the LR2000 tool. We have met with some success but the critical missing piece for most miners seems to be the lack of a mapping interface to access the mining claim information in the LR2000.

We are using our knowledge of mapping services and databases to bring miners a free online mapping system to provide LR2000 mining claims information with a single click on a map. This will include land status maps and historical claims information. This won't be available for a few more weeks and full implementation will be over the next few months so I'm not sure this will be timely enough for Dave G. We hope it will be a solution for other prospectors going forward.

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To add further to the confusion, BLM has changed the rules. Used to be that all Affidavits of Annual Labor were filed at the county recorder and BLM. Now, the BLM filing is mandatory and the county filing is optional. So, the county recorder is no longer a certain point of recordation for Annual Labor.

 

- Geowizard

 

 BLM filing is mandatory only if you are submitting the Maintenance Fee Waiver, holding 10 claims or less.

 

 I would urge everyone to always file Annual Labor forms at their local recorders office.

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Yes, all true. :)

 

Apples and oranges. And the oranges got flushed.

 

Geocommunicator WAS an interactive mapping tool with a link from LR2000. Problem was, problem is and problem will remain the "disconnect" between the Federal bureaucracy and the public. Why? The political system remains disconnected from the needed functionality of the public. The Federal Bureaucracy "promises" but never delivers. When the delivery comes, it is either outdated, non-functional or fraught with bugs. Several examples are related to the issues with LR2000 requiring the user to enable cookies and the TNS requirement to print copies of database pages. To begin with, LR2000 required leading zeros on township and range inputs related to the search function and even for reasonably savvy computer users, was a PITA. Half of the time, I was "not certain" when I get a blank search return that the data base REALLY didn't find claims or there was a snafu in the data base lookup. 

 

The gov farms out online data base projects like OBAMA CARE dot GOV and I shouldn't have to go there... But it is the poster child of bureaucratic performance.

 

- Geowizard 

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Leonard,

 

This is an Arizona reference to the subject:

 

http://www.admmr.state.az.us/Publications/circ056assessreq.html

 

 

Yes, I advise filing at county. Many miners have followed the rule that BLM has total jurisdiction and the BLM filing replaces the county filing.

 

- Geowizard

 

 

Thanks. I think I'll continue doing as I have in the past.

 

I mentioned this the the lady in the Public Room at BLM in Cheyenne Wyoming and she hadn't heard anything about it.

 

Leonard

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So, yes, another variable is the public room personnel having different levels of training and/or understanding. Their experience may go back 6 months or 15 years. :)

 

There was a period when the official position was to answer questions (in the public room) precisely as asked. If you asked a question in a vague manner, the reply would not include intelligence inferred by the person you were interacting with i.e. they didn't make any assumptions about what you were really asking. I asked about locating claims on a Spanish Land Grant in southern Arizona. The reply was ... "Well, that land belongs to Spain." So, there you have it.

 

- Geowizard 

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Yes, Wyoming and Alaska recognize the importance of their natural resources and encourage mining. Both states remain tax free and manage to have tax surpluses. :)

 

At one time, I lived in Casper and had mining claims around Oregon Buttes, south of Atlantic city.

 

- Geowizard

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 Many miners have followed the rule that BLM has total jurisdiction and the BLM filing replaces the county filing.

 

There is no such "rule".

 

There must be a public record made at the county recorder's every year.

There must be a filing with the BLM State office every year.

 

Both are required, by law, to keep your locations valid.

 

The public record has been required since 1866.

The informational notice at the BLM has been required since 1980.

 

The BLM's role is entirely administrative and does not fulfill your obligations under the mining acts.

The public recording is a legal duty and does not fulfill the requirement for a yearly informational filing with the BLM.

 

The rules of filing with the BLM State office are the same in every State.

The laws governing public recording dates, forms and requirements vary per State, and in the case of California they can vary between counties.

 

Eliminating either the required public recording or the informational filing leaves you without a valid mining claim.

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Three things I need to do before I go to stake a claim

 

1)  BLM records Search as mentioned

 

2)  County Recorder search

 

3)  Land Status search:  You'd be surprised how many people have filed with the BLM for a claim that reflects in GEOCOMMUNICATOR or LR2000 and its invalid because its state trust land.  This is the AZ site https://land.az.gov/.

 

Going through the records above take me about a week to narrow it down to an area I want to go through.  Still, with doing everything above, what you've researched can still be 100 days out of date and you can find yourself on a piece of land that has been staked, but not yet showing in any records.  You don't need to file with the county until after 90 days of putting the posts up.  Wandering upon these posts on a 160 acre recetnly staked claim that does not reflect in the records may be impossible.  Only one post needs to have claim info on it.  It then can take a couple of weeks for Yavapai County and BLM records to update.  You can do everything right and still be on someone's claim.

 

Took me eight months to learn everything above on my own.  I like the mining claim programs out there, but they are not updated daily, so you can still get more accurate records by doing your own research.

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Geowizard--

 

 

Thanks. 

 

Probably should have started out as saying "things I need to do before leaving my house to go prospecting to stake a claim."  I try to leave the house with at least three or four areas to check out when looking for a new claim.  Sometimes putting eyes on the unclaimed territories turns out to be completely different than the I thought'd be from the research.

 

Kind of enjoy the exploring, and hope to some day get a claim worth the effort.

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Even checking monuments on the ground is no sure thing. Even the spaniards left stone monuments behind. In an area that is rich in mining history it will always be a best guess scenario. I have filed several claims over the last 20 yrs. for myself and had to still eat a couple of them. It is simply unavoidable until the system is changed.

For those of you who think buying a claim is the way to go remember you could be buying a claim from someone that doesn't own it.

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