Questions tagged [legality]

The legalities associated with aspects of the outdoors. Ask questions using this tag if you wish to know if an activity is legal or what legal constraints are associated with a particular outdoor activity.

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55
votes
8answers
14k views

Why is it prohibited to sleep in a tent?

In many European countries like Germany, it's prohibited to sleep in the great outdoors with a tent. While I understand that downright camps are a problem due to littering, fire etc., I don't get why ...
36
votes
6answers
7k views

What is the responsible way to sell a firearm?

I am moving to a different state soon. In order to make the move easier I have decided to sell some of my firearms. I live in a state that doesn't have universal background checks, unfortunately. ...
33
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4answers
6k views

In the US is it legal to travel on any river/creek my canoe will navigate?

I have always assumed that if my Canoe will float, and the waterway ultimately reaches an ocean it is legal to travel on. I looked around for documents that said it clearly one way or the other. ...
23
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3answers
53k views

Is it legal to light bonfires on UK beaches?

Assuming a lack of signage indicating the legalities, is it legal to light a bonfire on a beach in the UK? I haven't been able to find an authoritative source on this either way, hence the question. ...
22
votes
2answers
581 views

When do I need a permit to go into nature?

When on holiday, I want to get as far as possible from civilisation — the furthest I've come is seeing only a single cairn during a full day. In Scandinavia, hiking and camping is permitted unless ...
21
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2answers
11k views

Am I allowed to sleep in the wild in the Austrian Alps?

I don't mean to use a tent, just a mat + a sleeping bag, or possibly a bivy sack if the weather is foul.
21
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2answers
16k views

Canadian Law with respect to knives

I keep seeing slightly different answers for some of these questions. In summary of what I know already, please tell me if I am wrong. You can own any knife of any length, with the following general ...
20
votes
1answer
312 views

Is it legal to camp on private property in Russia?

In some places, like Scandinavia, you can camp pretty much anywhere you like as long as it's only for one night and you don't leave a mess. The freedom to roam, or everyman's right is the general ...
19
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2answers
3k views

How long does it take for trash to become a historical artifact (in the United States)?

How long does it take for trash like beer cans, old mattress springs, or glass bottles to go from trash and need to be packed out to being a historic artifact with archaeological significance?
18
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4answers
13k views

What are the consequences of — illegally — using a 446 MHz PMR in the North American wilderness?

I've recently bought a pair of PMR446 walkie-talkies with some 5–10 km range, operating at 446 MHz. We've happily used them in Sareks Nationalpark in Sweden. Now I'm moving to Canada, where this ...
18
votes
1answer
607 views

When stranded at sea, should I not ask for a tow?

I've been told that you should never ask for a tow when you are stranded at sea. The reason given is that the person towing can claim a huge share of the stranded boat, potentially all of it if it's ...
17
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2answers
344 views

Am I allowed to swim in the Austrian Alps lakes?

The title really says it all, is it legal to swim in the lakes in the Austrian Alps?
15
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4answers
6k views

Legality of “semi-permanent” wooden structures in state and national forests in the US

Imagine the following situation: A group of friends found a remote spot in a state or national forest that they really like. They keep returning to the place quite often, lately there are at least ...
15
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4answers
1k views

What are lawful wilderness activities in Canada?

I am in process of immigrating from Russia to Canada. While I've fallen out of... Well, everything that includes movement... I have plans to resume wilderness trips after I finish immigration ...
14
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3answers
2k views

Legal situation for camping in the German Elbsandsteingebirge

Am I allowed to bivouac in the German Elbsandsteingebirge (Elbe Sandstone Mountains)? If no, is it considered as a peccadillo/unenforced law (Kavaliersdelikt)? In both countries ((Czech and ...
14
votes
2answers
150 views

Legal liabilities of non-profit guiding in adventure sports

I am a whitewater kayaker and I often show people down rivers I'm familiar with on their first time down. I take special joy in doing so and consider it community service. The only compensation is ...
13
votes
1answer
315 views

Are PLBs banned or otherwise useless anywhere?

This comment raises the idea that PLBs may not be allowed inland in the UK. A later comment refuted this, but I never even considered they would be disallowed anywhere, but simply rented one and took ...
12
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5answers
1k views

What are the laws for backcountry (“dispersed”) camping in the US?

I'm planning on taking a trip across the US and was planning on doing as much dispersed camping (a.k.a.backcountry camping) as possible. I wanted to educate myself on where it is legal to go off trail ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it legal to collect firewood (to take away) from woods and forests in the UK?

I've seen lots of people do this, and unless it was clearly stealing en-masse for profit I doubt there'd be a problem, but is it legal to pick up dead logs, kindling etc. and take them away to use ...
12
votes
1answer
610 views

Where can I find if a fixed blade knives is legal to carry around in a given country?

I am always uneasy at the idea of carrying around a fixed blade. For this reason, my backpack knife is a multitool (A fantastic Leatherman Blast, which saved the day already many times). I would like ...
12
votes
3answers
996 views

Am I allowed to “wild-camp” in my car?

It's generally prohibited to camp in the great outdoors in a few European countries like Germany (check out this related question). Speaking for latter, it's allowed to sleep in your car however. So,...
11
votes
5answers
17k views

How do you safely and legally dispose of old, damaged/unsafe camp stove gas canisters that are still full?

I have a number of old gas canisters commonly used in camp stoves. They have been around for over 5 years and have rusted - that is to say their condition is questionable. They are all 80% butane, ...
11
votes
1answer
164 views

Am I liable for damage or injuries caused by my dog?

If I am in my woods with my dog, and it kills a protected species of songbird (which it knows it shouldn't), should I report this? If so, to whom? Should I expect a fine? This hasn't happened yet, but ...
11
votes
1answer
4k views

What kinds of knives are allowed while camping in California?

I have read that California has some of the strictest weapons laws in the US. What types of knives are allowed when camping, hiking, or hunting? What should someone camping in California know before ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

Where in New Zealand is wild camping permitted?

Basically this question, only for New Zealand (both islands). I know that the Freedom Camping Act exists, which basically allows camping everywhere unless it's forbidden. So, where is it actually ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Is a hand chainsaw legal to carry in the UK

I've picked up a hand chainsaw for the woods as it's cheap and an amazing bit of kit. UK law states the legal carry for a knife is less than 3 inches and must be a non-locking folding blade. Will I ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Legal situation for roving in Sweden

I want to go on a trip to Sweden next summer. However, the plan was to do a little roving in the untouched nature. Note: I'll bring my own field target with me to not harm any nature. Roving can ...
10
votes
1answer
162 views

What exactly constitutes a “road” in Iceland?

In Iceland, off-roading is strictly prohibited. Unfortunately, it still happens and one can find tracks of off-roading all over the central highlands. On the other hand, in the landscape, some roads ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

What would happen if I use a USA (GMRS/FRS) two-way radio in Europe?

This question is the opposite from this one: What would the consequences of using a US two-way radio (GMRS/FRS) in Europe? I know Europe has their own frequency range for two-way radios (PMR), but for ...
10
votes
1answer
462 views

What are the repercussions of entering National parks during the 2013 US Government shutdown?

What are the repercussions of entering National parks during the US Government shutdown? There's a trail near my house that I go to almost every week. It's really just a fence with a gate in it. I ...
9
votes
2answers
243 views

Are pets allowed to thru-hike US National Scenic Trails?

In the US, National Scenic Trails span many different land types (state/federal parks, forests, etc). While these all have different rules on pets, I was wondering if the National Trail System ...
9
votes
2answers
320 views

Legal issues when entering school areas while geocaching in Europe

What are the legal issues when entering school areas while searching for geocaches? Some caches are located in such places. The first is available without problem for children and teachers, but what ...
9
votes
1answer
302 views

What does the status “W: Available at the Facility” mean regarding trail permits?

When looking for trail permits for a particular trail at recreation.gov, I almost always see the status "W: Available at the Facility" for today and the next day, and rarely anything available for 2 ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

Legality of parking and setting up camp on side of mountain roads in California near Los Angeles

I plan on living out of my car for a while, and was trying to find out about the rules/legality of pulling off on the side of mountain roads to setup camp; roads like the San Gabriel Canyon Road. On ...
9
votes
1answer
542 views

Legal situation for Parkour in the EU

I often wonder if it's even legal to practice Parkour in the cities of the EU? The runner is kind of trespassing the plots, isn't he?
9
votes
1answer
61 views

Is there a Canadian equivalent to Forestry Rangers

In the States, we have a Ranger structure, whereby you can call a ranger district that can answer questions about that district. Similarly, you can call higher up the food chain for questions ...
9
votes
1answer
262 views

Is it legal to sail a personal-size boat in the ocean in Massachusetts during a thunderstorm?

When I was younger, during the late 1960's and 1970's, my Dad had a personal-size sailboat, called the Sunfish. He loved it because it was lightweight, easy to sail on his own, and had room to ...
7
votes
1answer
368 views

Legal permits required for trekking in Canada

I will be travelling to Canada for a business trip, and I can spare a weekend in between my schedule. I'd be keen to trek/hike near Vancouver, and I have banked upon hiking The Stawamus Chief. As I'll ...
7
votes
1answer
55k views

Which wildlife is it legal to hunt in the UK?

Does someone have a list or a link of exactly which UK wildlife it is legal to hunt & safe (& tasty) to eat? For example, are rabbits safe to eat, or is myxomatosis still a problem? ...
7
votes
2answers
260 views

How to assure safe searching for cache hidden in my own backyard?

You shouldn't place a cache on someone's property without permission, that's for sure. But when the property belongs to me, I can hide cache on my own backyard. However, what should I do to assure ...
7
votes
1answer
258 views

Why is it legal to hunt over planted food but not placed food?

I am from the Midwest and it is very common to plant food plots for deer hunting or hunt over a flooded cornfield(with planted millet for ducks). This is completely legal here. But as soon as you take ...
7
votes
1answer
407 views

Law on hunting wild pigeon? (UK)

Pigeon meat is good! 1 squab (whole pigeon) has 37g of protein which is the majority of most people's daily needs. On top of that wild pigeon has practically no carbon footprint, which is impressive ...
7
votes
1answer
92 views

Municipal invasive species committee experiences?

Our town (Groton Massachusetts) formed a town committee a few months ago to concentrate on invasive species issues. Since we are new, we are trying to find our way and decide what exactly we should ...
6
votes
2answers
294 views

Consequences of crossing railroad tracks when looking for caches in Germany?

It happens quite often by geocaching: the cache is situated somewhere near the rail track, but it seems that you are on the wrong site... The legal passage is quite far, and you have still a lot of ...
5
votes
2answers
159 views

How do permits for US/Canada public land work?

I recently read an article stating that to access Banff National Park, you need several permits: A park permit, a backcountry permit and, if you want to, a fire permit. I also read about these ...
5
votes
1answer
740 views

How do you become a New Forest commoner?

Exactly that... I've done some searching and it looks like a catch-22 situation: To be able to move there you need to do commoning already. But to do commoning, you need live there already. (Hmm... do ...
5
votes
1answer
187 views

When fishing in the Ocean off the US coast, at what point do fishing laws stop?

If you are fishing in the ocean off the United States Coast. At what distance from shore do US fishing laws no longer apply? The US Coast Guard listes, boundaries at 12, 24 and 200 Miles. ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Is emergency overnighting using hammock/canvas tent considered wild camping (Europe/Germany)?

Is (more or less planned) emergency overnighting with usage of hammock and/or canvas tent considered wild camping in Europe (especially in Germany)? In many countries, such as Germany, wild camping ...
5
votes
1answer
340 views

How are minimum legal calibers for hunting decided?

For most big game species in the United States there is a minimum legal caliber where in order for a cartridge to be used for hunting it has to be of a certain size. For example, For all big and ...
4
votes
4answers
348 views

How to avoid trespassing in the United States?

Sometimes in the United States private land won't be marked clearly or there won't fences along the lines or maybe there aren't any "no trespassing" signs. Especially in the western parts with big ...